CTP-1 Ritual Mechanics

  1. Explain why purification is important prior to ritual, and what you do to purify yourself before you lead a rite. Include any prayers said, items used, and any stage directions needed to help your reviewer understand what is happening. (min. 150 words, not including prayers, items, and directions)

Purification is a necessary step in ADF ritual for a couple of reasons.  First, it gets rid of any unwanted energies or thoughts (Bonewits 26-27).  Second, the actions or words used can serve as a trigger for participants to shift into a more prayerful or sacred mindset in preparation for the rite (Bonewits 23).

My pre-ritual purification process varies depending on where the ritual is held.  If I have access to an outdoor area where I can be undisturbed for a few moments, I will find a tree and lean against or touch it.  I will take a few deep breaths and establish connection to the Two Powers.  I feel the ground beneath my feet and let any hyperactivity or stress sink into the soil to be carried away and recycled by the deep-water currents.   I feel the air on my face and allow it to blow any negative thoughts away.  I feel the warmth of the sun, or imagine the warmth of the fiery distant stars, on my face and allow that fire to burn away any other negative emotions or energies.  I touch the tree and feel myself strengthened and re-energized. I take a few more deep breaths, thank the tree for sharing its strength and steadiness and re-enter the venue.

2.  Explain how you position your body and hands when inviting the Kindreds and making Key Offerings, what that position means, and why it is important to have a position that is (or several positions that are) consistent between rituals. (min. 100 words for description and meaning, min 150 for importance)

                I use different body positions depending on the Kindred being invited.  My general stance throughout is to have my feet shoulder width apart with knees slightly bent.  This allows for a nice solid base and helps eliminate the possibly of passing out from having my knees locked.  It is the position of the arms and hands where the variation generally occurs.

For the Ancestors, I stretch my arms out about 45 degrees from my body and have my palms facing downward. This allows me to direct energy through the earth and into the Underworld.

For the Nature Spirits, I raise my arms to waist level or just above and have the palms facing away from me.  My elbows are bent slightly.  The Nature Spirits reside in Middle Realm with us, so I want to direct energy outwards at their level.

For the Shining ones I raise my arms up so that my upper arms are parallel to the ground and my forearms are perpendicular to the ground.  My palms face upwards.  This allows the energy to be directed upwards through the sky and into the Upper Realm. By keeping my upper arms perpendicular to the ground helps to ease fatigue so that I can hold the position for longer periods of time.

For the Key Offering my position can change slightly depending on who or what the Being of Occasion is and the nature of the offering.  In general, I will hold the offering in both hands.  My hands will be above my head with arms extended as far as safety and stability allow.  I do this to present the offering as well as to use my hands as a channel for directing the energy of those present into the offering before it is given.  If the offering is large, or something that cannot be safely lifted, I will place my hands near the offering and use them to direct the energy and as a designation that the material is the offering being given to the BoO.

Having a set of repeated postures or hand positions for certain ritual steps is important to the ritualists as well as those attending the ritual.  For the ritualist, having a set action frees them from worrying about what to do next with their body.  This, in turn, allows them to focus on the energy and deeper meaning of the actions they are performing and the words they are saying.  This also allows then to more closely monitor how the attendees energies are responding as well as making it easier to make changes to the ritual “on the fly” if needed.

For the Attendees, set motions and hand or body positions offer a sense of familiarly that may help them feel safe and comfortable during the ritual.  They can anticipate what is going to happen.  This allows their brains to shift out of an active, anticipatory mode and participate more fully in the actual energetic flow of the ritual.

 

  1. Describe your meditation practice as it stands today. Include its regularity, any positions you may use or prayers you may say, and the method(s) you typically use. (min. 200 words)

My meditation practice is fairly basic.  I do a structured session at least one evening a week.  During this session, I am either sitting or reclining depending on how my body feels that day.  I generally use music to induce an altered state.  I prefer instrumentals so that my brain doesn’t try to latch onto lyrics although I seem to respond well to some of Lorena McKinnett’s vocal works.   I begin my sessions with several deep breaths as I connect to the two powers.  I envision a flaming purple protective shield around me and my meditation space.  If I have a particular issue or theme I am working on, I ask the Gods that it be addressed in the meditation.  There are also times when I do not specify a theme and “go with the flow” so to speak.  Once I begin, I try to get inside the music.  I imagine myself surrounded by, and floating on, the sounds.  I let the sound waves reverberate through me as I sink deeper and deeper into a trance state.  I deepen my breathing as I sink deeper.  If images come, I allow them to play out, but don’t actively engage.  I only observe.  At the end of the playlist, which usually is 10 -15 minutes long, I change my breathing which gradually lifts me out of trance.  I begin to wiggle my fingers and toes until I am all the way “Back”.  I then spend a few minutes reflecting on what I learned/observed.  I take down the shield and go about my evening.  As an alternative to music, I have also used Philip Carr-Gomm’s guided meditations and would highly recommend them to anyone.

In the last few months I have also started to drive to and from work without the radio on. While this is not meditation in the strictest sense, I have found that it allows me to leave the stress of work behind and shift into a more relaxed mindset in the evenings as well as allowing me to sharpen my focus in the mornings so that my brain takes less time to “warm up” once I get to work.

 

  1. Explain how two different active ADF Priests light a ritual fire. Describe the actions done, any prayers or magical work done. Explain how you light a ritual fire, including actions, prayers, and magical work you may do.

               

Rev. Jan Avende and Rev. Melissa Hill were kind enough to tell me how they lite their ritual fires.  I will begin with Rev. Avende’s methods.

 

Rev Jan Avende:

To light the fire, she will light a long stick on incense, preferably with a match instead of a lighter.  She uses this to light a candle dedicated to Hestia.  This allows the incense to be, not only a method of ignition, but an offering as well.  At indoor rites, this ends the fire lighting.

At an outdoor rite, the main fire would already be laid and lit.  Rev. Avende prefers not to use any kind of lighter fluid or other combustible chemical and instead carefully lays the kindling and stokes the fire to life.  She will then use the incense stick to add the flame from the Hestia candle to the main sacrificial fire, once again using the stick of incense as both ignition device and offering.  Once the fire is lit and has taken hold, she sees the embers of the fire connect to the earth and the smoke connecting to the heavens.  The smoke also serves as the method of transmission for prayers and sacrifices from us to the gods.  That role makes having a good fire vitally important.

For either type of rite:  Rev. Avende will visualize her personal hearth fire.  She states that she” carries this fire with her” and when she lights a ritual fire she envisions joining that inner flame to that of the ritual fire.

 

This is the prayer she uses for public ritual:

The Children of the Earth call out to Hestia!

First-born and last-born,

You are the Lady of our Hearth and Heart.

Your fire burns strong in us,

And we ask that it burn brightly here on our hearth now.

Hestia, sweet fire-maiden,

Join us here.  Be our good fire and sanctify our hearth.

Warm us and light our way.

Hestia, accept our sacrifice!

 

For Druid Moon rites, which are typically private grove affairs it is a little different. First she lays the fire.  She then calls for the fire from everywhere and visualizes it being kindled.  As she physically lights the fire she often uses the following as a prayer:

This fire,

born of the waters,

kindled upon the land,

and rising into the heavens,

Draws down the fire in the sky,

and draws up the fire burning deep within the earth,

Marking this as our sacred space.

It burns strongly here, at the center of all,

and carries our sacrifices to the gods.

 

Rev. Melissa Hill:

 

Rev. Hill believes that the most important part of lighting a ritual fire is having the proper knowledge of how to start the type of fire that is needed and what material to have on hand to create it.   Like Rev. Avende, Rev. Hill avoids using any kind of chemical accelerants when building and lighting a sacred fire.

Once all material is on hand, Rev. Hill lays the fire.  For her, lighting a fire efficiently is a way to respect our ancestors and honor the fact that a good fire was essential for their survival.  She used as match or lighter, but has learned a few ways of lighting the fire without them.  As she feeds the fire additional kindling she will pray over it.  She will have one hand, palm up, facing towards the fire and feed the fire with the other.

Whereas Rev. Avende has set prayers that she uses, Rev. Hill prefers to use themes or motifs.  One that she especially likes is linking the current fire to the fires that are, and have been, kept by ADF Flamekeepers.  She also often works with Gabija, the Baltic Goddess.  When she breathes on the fire it not only helps the fire grow physically but also allows her to share her life force with the flames.

 

My Method:

                Thus far the rituals I have lead have either been in an indoor space or an outdoor space where open fires were not allowed so I use groupings of three candles as the ritual fire.  I have a special copper three candle holder that I use.  The first thing I do is get fresh candles for each rite.   I place each candle in its holder with the intent that once placed and lit, the candle’s flame will join with the flames from the other two candles to create the ritual fire.  I always remember that fire is so important that it is the one thing that I MUST do for a rite.  Next I connect to the Two Powers and light the candles.  I generally use a lighter or a match although spaghetti works for tall glass incased candles as well.   Once the candles are lit, I envision them morphing into a large blazing bonfire around which we sit and to which we invite the Kindred and the Beings of Occasion.  If I am using other candles for illumination I kindle these from the central fire.

I look forward to eventually leading a ritual in which I get to lite a “real” fire.  While the physical acts will certainly change, the magical and energetic portions remain the same.  I will still connect to the Two Powers before lighting the fire.  I sill still see the flames blazing and offering warmth and light to those who sit at the fire.  As far as the physical act of lighting a fire,  I see myself using a lighter or long match to catch kindling on fire.  I would watch and tend the burgeoning flames until they catch and the fire burns bright and strong.

 

  1. Describe three different methods of (Re)creating Sacred Space, as used by at least two different active ADF Priests. Explain the actions done, the reason for those actions, and any specific magical work the Priest does during the (Re)creating of Sacred Space portion of the ritual. Provide an original script with stage directions for (Re)creating of Sacred Space based on one of these methods.

 

I am blessed to have had the opportunity to, not only meet, but share ritual space with a lot of ADF Druids clergy members.  Three of them have agreed to assist me with this submission by explaining how they perform various parts of the ADF Core Order of Ritual in questions 5-7.  They are Rev. Jean “Drum” Pagano, Rev. Jan Avende, and Rev. Melissa Hill.  I will start by describing Rev. Avende ritual methods, then Rev. Hill’s, and finally Rev. Pagano’s.

 

Rev. Jan Avende:

Rev. Avende focuses on the interconnection of all sacred space and all sacred time. Part of her method includes making sure all the dimensions line up properly.

To begin, she hallows the space as well as the attendees. She goes this to clear out any unwanted energies or influences, leaving the raw chaos to be shaped.  She uses the fire as her connection.  The embers connect to the earth and the smoke to the sky.  She then hallows the well and the fire.  As a Hellene, she uses an omphalos stone instead of a tree.  She moves away from the altar or altar space, retrieves the omphalos, and then places the stone on the altar and states that it is the “center of all Realms”.  The omphalos is then anointed with oils.  These actions are accompanied by the following:

 

“Let this area around us be purified sacred space where we go to meet the gods, and the gods descend down to meet with us.

Let the smoke from our sacred fire carry our voices to the heavens to be heard by the gods.

I place this omphalos at the center of worlds, just as it marked the center of the ancient world.  My hands, like two eagles, flying to meet in the middle and establish this as the sacred center of worlds.

Through this sacred center, let the World Tree grow, plunging deep within the earth to touch the Sacred Waters below and reaching through the sky to embrace the Sacred Fires above.”

 

 

Rev. Melissa Hill:

Rev. Hill uses the Fire, Well, and Tree as the elements of her sacred center.  She invites attendees to tone as she speaks or prays.

For the Well:  Rev. Hill offers silver to the Well then holds her hands over it.  She visualizes the waters from deep within the earth coming up and joining the water in the well.

For the Fire: Rev. Hill offers oil to the fire.  She holds her hands over the flames and visualizes the fire intensifying.

For the Tree:  Rev. Hill lights a stick on incense from the fire then censes the tree from the top down, and them back up. As she does this she says:

This is the sacred tree which connects all the realms. Let the roots of this tree reach deep into the otherworlds, let its branches span the heights.  We are connected with all the realms by the will of the tree.

 

Rev. Jean Pagano (Drum):

In this method, Rev. Pagano focuses more on each of the Kindred rather than objects.  He begins with the Ancestors.  He stands with arms open as if to embrace them.  Next he moves the Nature Spirits.  Rev. Pagano first centers himself and then begins a quiet communion with the Nature Spirits.  He extends his arms out so they are at about 90 degrees in relation to his body keeping his forearms parallel to the ground.  His palms are up.  This posture shows that he is open to the spirits we share the middle realm with.  Finally, he focuses on the Shining Ones.  He holds his hands level with his face, palm open.  He uses this posture to indicate offering and that he is open to receive “grace and blessings” from the Shining Ones.

 

Original Script:

My script uses the standard Fire, Well, and Tree to serve as the elements of the Center.  First to be hallowed is the Well, followed by the Fire, then the Tree.  The Well will be silvered, the Fire offered oil and the Tree will be watered using water from the Well.  I chose to use water from the well instead on incense because I like the imagery of the sacred waters feeding the sacred tree.  I think it helps tie the imagery and reminds us off the interconnection and interdependence of all things.   I have used some conventional phrases like “Sacred well, flow within us.”  This lends a sense of familiarity of the rite.

 

Well: (Put a silver coin or other silver item into the well)

We honor the sacred well.

Waters that dive to the depths of the earth.

Waters that flow to every corner of the universe

Waters that bathe the bones of our ancestors and carry their wisdom.

Accept our offering and let us know the depths of wisdom that flow within ourselves.

Sacred well, flow within us.

 

All: Sacred well, flow within us!

 

Fire: (Pour a bit of oil onto the fire into a libation bowl if using candles.)

We honor the sacred fire.

Flames that consume and transform

Flames that warm and illuminate.

Flames that spark all of creation.

Accept our offering and let the flames warm our spirits and our lives.

Sacred Fire, burn within us!

 

All: Sacred fire, burn within us!

 

 

Tree: (Pour a bit of water onto the tree)

We honor the sacred tree.

Branches that stretch up to the highest peaks of the ordered universe.

Roots that plunge into the depths of chaos and raw potential.

Trunk that stands firm and strong joining the realms.

Accept our offering and let our potential be joined with order to stand firm in this world.

Sacred tree, grow within us.

 

All: Sacred tree, grow within us!

 

The Center is established and Order established! We are connected to all other Sacred Centers that are, were, or will be.

 

 

 

  1. Describe three different methods of Calling/Hallowing/Affirming the Waters, as used by at least two different active ADF Priests. Explain the actions done, the reason for those actions, and any specific magical work the Priest does during the Calling/Hallowing/Affirming of the Waters. Provide an original script with stage directions for the Calling/Hallowing/Affirming of the Waters based on one of these methods.

 

 

Rev. Jan Avende:

Rev. Avende starts by telling a story about winning the waters. She states that the water have been won for the attendees by the shining Ones and/or the Deities of Occasion.  Rev. Avende then states that “all Waters are by their very nature sacred, but we set these Waters aside for a time for our use in receiving these blessings.”  She then thinks about the omens, making sure she correctly understands them and may also have the attendees meditate on the omens and how they apply to their own lives.  She then asks the Shining Ones and/or Deities of Occasion for the blessing

At this point Rev. Avende general does one of the following:

  1. Rev. Avende will hold the container with the waters in it up and tone or sing a key word or phrase associated with the omen while visualizing the blessings being put in the waters. She will use “awen” or another syllable if no key words or phrases were given.
  2. She will place the container on a table. She will put 3 candles around the container and direct the attendees to think about the omen. She will then light the first candle while speaking the name of the symbol or keyword associated with it and visualize the waters lighting up with the blessing. She repeats this process for the other two candles.

Once the Waters have been hallowed she states that the Waters have been “infused with the blessings” and states “Behold! The Waters of Life!”  Rev. Avende then asks the attendees if they would like to receive the blessings.  The container is then carried around and glasses are filled.  Once everyone has a bit of the water, they drink it together.  Rev. Avende uses plain water at all public rites.

 

 

Rev. Melissa Hill:

Rev. Hill starts with a bowl of water. She has two or three attendees hold the bowl.  She prefers to use people that had helped hallow the elements of the center, but other attendees may also be the bowl holders.  Rev. Hill then stands with one hand raised with the palm facing the bowl.  This allows her to become the channel through which the blessing will flow into the waters.  She then asks for a quiet intonation from the attendees.  She does then to increase the feeling of unity as well as allowing everyone to serve as a channel for the blessings.  Rev. Hill then calls on each of the Kindred and the omen they gave.  She will call to the Kindred that the Being of Occasion belongs to last.  For Example:

 

I call to the Ancestors to bring their blessings to us on this day

Let these waters be filled with their energy and their love

Let these waters swirl and move with the dark energies of potential and the strength of the lessons learned from the past.

Let them be infused with the blessings of (whatever the omen was)

Give us the waters!

All repeat: Give us the waters!

 

I call to the Nature Spirits, those of green shoot and red blood.

I call to the Alfar and the Tomten spirits great and small who guard the land

With wild eyes and glowing green light I call to you and ask that you bless these waters with your energies and gifts. As we have given to you so we ask that you give to us and let these waters be infused with the blessings of (whatever the next omen pulled was)

Give us the waters!

All repeat: Give us the waters!

 

I call to the Shining Ones, the goddesses and gods who guide the worlds

I call to those who shine in the darkness and those who dwell in the light

Blessed ones, wisest and mightiest of us all I ask that you share your powers with us and imbue these waters with your gifts! Let these waters be infused with the blessings of (whatever the last omen was)

Give us the waters!

All repeat: Give us the waters!

 

As the attendees say “Give us the Waters!” the bowl is raised a little bit until it is over their heads.  Rev. Hill then declares “Behold the Waters of life!” and the waters are distributed in a way that is fitting for the rite.

 

Rev. Jean Pagano (Drum):

 

                    To begin the Calling/Hallowing/Affirming of the Waters Rev. Pagano will hold the container on the waters at eye level.  This pose serves to present the waters to the Kindred and show that they are “soon to be elevated”.  Rev. Pagano then raises the container higher to bring it into closer contact with the Shining Ones and says “Hail to you, Shining Ones, descend into these waters and make them holy”. He then lowers the waters to chest level, hold them out and moved them horizontally from left to right.  This motion serves to present them to the ritual attendees.  While presenting the waters he states, “Behold, the Waters of Life”.  The waters are then distributed in a way that is fitting for the rite.

 

Original Script:

The vessel containing the Waters sits on the altar.  Once the omen is given and deemed positive, ask:

“Do those in attendance wish to receive the blessings of the Kindred?”

Upon receiving a positive response, instruct the attendees to think about the omens and how they may apply to their lives. Hold hands over the vessel and state:

“The blessings flow from the Kindred into this vessel that we may benefit from their generosity.  We have given to them and in return they have given the blessings of (review the omen)”

Instruct those in attendance to visualize the blessings swirling in the Waters.   Once the blessings are at full strength, raise the vessel and proclaim “Behold the waters of Life!!”

Distribute the Waters as fitting for the rite.

 

 

 

  1. Describe three different methods of Opening the Gates, as used by at least two different active ADF Priests. Explain the actions done, the reason for those actions, and any specific magical work the Priest does during the Gate Opening. Provide an original script with stage directions for the Gate Opening based on one of these methods.

 

Rev. Jan Avende:

 

Rev. Avende calls to Garanus to act as Gatekeeper for most public rites, but may also call on other spirits as is fitting for the rite.  She has called on Hekate and a being she calls “The Mistkeeper” in private rites.  Her primary focus during this portion is the at the Gatekeeper exists in all the Realms and is able to move between then.  She asks the Gatekeeper to join their magic with hers and help open the Gates.

Rev Avende first opens the Underworld Gate.  To do this she draws a spiral with her hand that begins from her center circling counter-clockwise toward her feet.  Next she opens the Gate to the Upper Realm this time drawing a spiral that begins, again, from her center but circles in a clockwise direction to her head.  This forms a corkscrew.

To connect the Realms she forms an energy ball at navel level with her right hand at the top and her left hand on the bottom.  She then extends her right hand upwards and her left hand downwards.  She then moves her hand to prayer position and moved them out to the side to fully open the Gates.

Here is an example if the words Rev. Avende uses for Opening the Gates:

 

We call out now to Hekate to guide us in walking between the worlds:

Hekate, at moonlit crossroads, you befriend the helpless.

Keyholding Mistress of Earth, Sea, and Sky.

Dark Mother Hekate,

Ghosts and hounds follow you.

You are the black puppy and the black she-lamb.

Torchbearer, we praise you for the brightness of your power.

We offer you [eggs and wine].

Hekate of the Crossroads be our Guide!

Guide us as you guided Demeter in her journey.

Reveal to us the way to walk in safety.

Radiant Hekate of the Torches,

Guiding Light, Keeper of the Keys,

Join your hidden knowledge and power with ours

and help us to open the Gates between the worlds.

Let this water become the Well, and open as a Gate to the worlds below.

Our connections deepen to the Chthonic beings as the Gate is opened.

Let this flame become the Fire, and open as a Gate to the worlds above.

Our connections deepen to the Ouranic beings as the Gate is opened.

Let this Omphalos stand at the center, and mark our sacred center here and in all the world.

Let the tree wrap its roots around the stone and sink into the Well, and let its branches stretch upwards and reach for the Fire.

We stand here, connected at the Sacred Center to all the realms of Land, Sea, and Sky.

Let the Gates be Open!”

 

Rev. Melissa Hill:

 

Rev. Hill begins the process of Opening the Gates by having the attendees sing the Portal Song.   Each gate is hallowed as the come up in the verses of the song.   The well is silvered, the Fire is oiled, and the tree is censed.  Rev. Hill then has the attendees make a pushing motion with their hands towards the center.  At the same time she leads then to begin quietly change “Open the Gates”.   The chant gradually gets louder and Rev. Hill directs the energy produced by holding her staff in one hand and pointing it where it needs to go.  When the energy peaks she raises the staff as a signal for everyone to release the energy.  At this point she says: “The ways between the worlds are open and our words will resonate to the edge of all things for we stand at the center of the all.”

 

 

 

Rev. Jean Pagano:

 

Rev. Pagano learned “that gates are opened by drawing things towards you and are closed by moving them away.” He begins the process at the Well.   Rev. Pagano thrusts his hand into the waters of the well and then spirals it back toward him.  He visualized the Ancestors coming through as his hand moves up through the water.   Next he moved to the fire.  He places his hand near the fire, palm facing the flames and spirals it back towards him.  As he is doing this he sees the Shining Ones coming forth.  Finally he goes to the Tree.  He begins with both hands joined then moves one toward the Well and one towards the Heavens.  This symbolizes the linking of the worlds.   All the Kindred now stand together.

 

Original Script:

 

Make an offering to the Gatekeeper and state:

“I call to you Gatekeeper and ask that you join your power with mine so that we may open the  ways between the Worlds”

At this point, take a centering breath and reconnect to the Two Powers as needed.

Begin at the Well.  Hold dominant hand over the Well and draw a clockwise spiral with three loops over it.  See a swirling wormhole spin and open allowing access to the Under Realm.  See the Kindred on the other side

Say “May the Well open as a Gate!”

Move to the Fire.  Hold dominant hand over the Fire and draw a clockwise spiral with three loops over it.  See a swirling wormhole spin and open allowing access to the Upper Realm.  See the Shining Ones on the other side.

Say “May the Fire Open as a Gate!”

Move to the Tree.   Hold dominant hand towards the Tree and draw a clockwise spiral with three loops over it.  See a swirling wormhole spin and open allowing access to the other dimensions in this world that were previously not accessible.  See the beings that inhabit the Middle Realm with us come into focus.

Say “May the Tree Stand as a Connection between the worlds.”

 

Clasp hands in front of you face and while visualizing a swirling tunnel move up to meet the wormhole to the Upper Realm and another meeting the wormhole from the Under Realm. Throw your arms apart and state “Let the Gates be Open!!”

 

  1. Explain the purpose and function of the Pouring of Waters for an ADF Unity Rite. Provide a script with stage directions for this portion of the Unity Rite. (min. 150 words for explanation)

The Unity Rite FAQ states that the purpose of pouring the waters is “foster growth of spiritual egregore (group mind) of ADF. (Unity)”   ADF is made up of many Groves and Protogroves as well as members that for whatever reason cannot or chose not to belong to a grove.  Festivals offer a chance for members to meet and interact, but not everyone can attend.    This separation, both physical and spiritual, can take a toll on any organization.   The Unity Rite is the method that ADF created to address this. Through it, all of the members of ADF are called and represented, spiritually and energetically (Unity).  This brings each and every one of them together, unifying them as the waters that are poured unite in an act of sympathetic magic.

I saw this rite for the first time at Summerland two years ago and thought it was a fantastic way to acknowledge all of the members, in attendance or not, of ADF. First the names of each Grove were read, then each Protogrove.  Solitary Practitioners were also mentioned as a group.  As each name was read, a ladle of water was poured into a large vessel.  Each group is acknowledged separately, but like the waters once they have been poured, mingle and blend together to form on large entity, ADF.

The Pouring can also serve as a way to bestow blessings of the Kindreds on all of the Groves, Protogroves and Solitaries at the same time, further increasing the unity and cohesiveness of the organization.  In this case, the blessings are bestowed upon the entirety of the ADF membership all at once.  Further unifying by the sharing of blessings.

By regularly holding Unity Rites and calling the names of each Grove, Protogrove, and acknowledging the Solitary members, those in attendance are reminded that there are others in the organization that they may not see or even know about, but they are no less important and deserve to be remembered and acknowledged.  It is also a reminder that we are not in this alone.  There are other likeminded individuals out there working with the Kindred and so we are never truly alone. 

Original Script:

 

This script calls for 2 people, but can be done with one if needed.

 

Have 2 containers, one with blessed waters in it, and one empty.

 

D1 “We stand here as individual beings but also as part of a large whole, thank of ADF. While we may be physically separated we share sacred space for when one sacred center forms it touched all other sacred centers joining them in a massive web.  Through this working we affirm the unification of the members of ADF.”

We are all sustained by the Earth Mother.  She supports and carries us on her back.  As the Mother of us all, we ask that she continue to bless and sustain us.

May the Ancestors bless us with the wisdom that they carry deep in their bones.  The knowledge of the chaos and the power of it’s potential.

May the Shining Ones bless us with the wisdom that lies beyond the starts, that burns with the order of the cosmos.

May the Sprits of Nature bless us with the wisdom that come from living the realm Between.  May we learn to unify order and chaos and turn potential into reality so that the work of ADF may continue in this Realm.

May our individual spirits and energies be joined and blessed as one as we name the Solitaries, Groves, and Protogroves and the pouring and mixing of the waters.

 

D1 will ladle water into the larger container.

D2 will read the name of the Groves and Protogroves.

 

D2 will pause after every name to allow D1 time to add the water.

After all the Groves and Protogroves are named, D2 will say “Solitaries” and D1 will add a last ladle of water.

 

Once the reading and ladling has concluded either D1 or D2 states:

 

“We have acknowledged our fellow Druids that they may be remembered and having blessings bestowed upon them.  ”We thank the Earth Mother for her sustenance and the Ancestors, Shining Ones and Spirits of Natures for their blessings of wisdom.  Now, may our energies flow together to be united into one energy just as the waters have flowed together and united into one body.  May we be bolstered by the blending, strengthened by the sharing and unified in our undertakings.  So shall it be!”

Works Cited:

 

“ADF Core Order of Ritual for High Days” . Ár nDraíocht Féin: A Druid Fellowship, Inc. 2015. Web. 12/16/2015.

Avende, Jan. Email Interview.  1/3/2016.

Bonewits, Isaac. Neo-Pagan Rites.Llewellyn Publications.  Woodbury, MN. 2007. Print

Hill, Melissa. Email Interview. 1/9/2016

Pagano, Jon “Drum”. Email Interview. 1/31/2016

“Unity Rite FAQ”. Ár nDraíocht Féin: A Druid Fellowship, Inc. 2016. Web. 1/28/2016.

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