The past year has been
a remarkable and progressive one for the Reform. Looking back to
the beginning of this 2nd Age of the Reform, we saw the birth of
a new Goddess, and the birth of a new vision of Reformed Druidism
– one that sees the preservation and restoration of the Earth
Mother as our primary mission. We’ve seen a record number
of new members join, and several new Groves have sprung up.
We also saw a lot of
criticism, but that is to be expected. So-called “Reconstructionist
Druids” think we’re not Celtic enough – that we
don’t emphasize studying the ancient Celts enough. I wonder
how much time the ancient Druids spent studying the Celts? I’ll
bet not much at all. If at all. And in the midst of a global environmental
crisis, is such study really worth our time? What will we say to
our children and grandchildren? “Sorry little Dalon. We were
busy learning Gaelic and didn’t take time to lobby congress
to do something about global warming. Maybe you can find a new planet?”
I also have to wonder
about people who emphasize Celticity too much. The Celts were one
ancient people out of many. Yes, I admire their art and culture,
music and language. But I don’t believe they are superior
to any other race or culture on the planet. I read once, to my great
embarrassment, that the Ku Klux Klan believed, at one time anyway,
that theirs was a reconstruction of Celtic culture. That they adopted
the white robes, the Celtic cross and, burnt the cross as a substitution
for the wicker man. Or so some of their early leaders believed.
I certainly don’t want to be compared to the Klansmen, and
I think groups like the so-called “Sinnsreachdaidhean”
need to take care lest they be accused of espousing white supremacism
under the guise of "Celtic Heathen Revivalism" (those
who claim that theirs is “the only true Druidism” are
already on the path of hate).
I think the new age of
the Reform will reflect the original values of the founders of the
Reform, but on a more global scale. This means universal acceptance
(if you say you are a Druid, than you are one) of Druids no matter
what their ethnicity, their religious upbringing, their sexual orientation,
their race, their language, etc.
I’ve said this
once and I’ll say it again: We are one people on this Earth.
We cannot separate ourselves from each other without separating
ourselves from the Earth Mother. We have to take responsibility
for each other. If one is sick, or hungry or homeless, ALL are affected
by their misfortune. Druids should be on the front lines of the
soup kitchens, the welfare offices, the food banks, and the homeless
shelters. We should be lobbying Congress and the United Nations
for and end to all wars, all poverty, all hunger. We should be lobbying
Congress for higher minimum wages, for universal health care, for
universal access to good schools, including higher education. We
should be insisting that the global trend towards deforestation
be stopped. That alternate forms of building materials be utilized
and new ones found. That alternate forms of energy be legislated
into use. We Druids are the ones who need to set an example and
do the ultra-recycling, and drive the economy cars, or take public
transportation. We need to be the ones who will encourage science
and technology to make Green technologies a priority. Our communities
need to be the ones that utilize wind, and solar and hydrogen power.
In other words, we Druids
need to be activists, who stand against the old, corporate polluting
ways of doing business for the sake of profits alone, and stand
for an economic model that puts the needs of people, and of the
Earth Mother herself, before the needs of stockholders.
In this, the beginning
of the second year of the second age of the Druid Reform, we need
to believe in ourselves, and take upon ourselves the challenge:
We can change the world.
and May the FOREST be with you.
Senior Archdruid of OMS/RDG