Druidry and Prayer – A Review

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It is just before midnight in a small, stuffy, but comfortable enough room to feel like home and I certainly am not fully aware of what I am writing; I find this is the best time to actually take it on. In my previous blog post: Experiencing The Storm I had only begun reading a book which in a matter of moments helped change my outlook on life.
I wanted to write the review in a formal manner, I  was going to research and practice until I felt I knew how best to write this (as if any formality or craftsmanship could ever do this piece justice).
When it comes to Nimue Brown’s work (the bits I have  been fortunate enough to read) I feel like a sort of groupie, never having anything but amazing things to not only say, but also feel.

‘Hello! Would it be so wrong of me to say, that I dislike religion to such an extent that I get nauseous just reading the word?’

Druidry and Prayer is not a self help book (because I cannot stomach those)… neither is it your conventional guide to being spiritual (those taste like cardboard in my mind) – it is the calming tablet for an uneasy mind…

The uneasy mind which loses sleep more often than not, because the ignorance of the world and its politics drives it to a point of maddening anger; because life is shit and there definitely would be no comfort in performing a mindless hand-me-down ritual of a religion that is filthier than the most neglected sewerage place thingy.

What I appreciate most about this book is that right in the beginning we are soothed and our doubts as to, whether or not we made a mistake opening the book  are erased as we are taken through the context of otherwise sickening words… for example,
‘ Religion: For me a religion is a formal and proscribed social structure with functions that can be understood entirely in social and psychological terms. ‘
Had this not been part of the book, I probably would have not carried on much further with it.
‘Talking about Gods’ in itself helps broaden your perspective and prepares you for an easy to swallow reality check.

I could ramble on about all the bits of the book that resonated and the bits I am certain will have an effect on any and every person who does read it all the way through, but why spoil this magical journey for the rest of you?

‘Dear whatever is out there, I climbed out of my self made grave because you threw at me a thing I would have never imagined could exist.’

Let’s forget all we have been spoon-fed, let’s work on the magic within ourselves and in the process empower those around us who need it most.

If there is one book I would say is a necessity to have read; Druidry and Prayer by Nimue Brown would be it. I’d have someone read it to me when the time comes and I begin chasing the white light – really… I would.

Experiencing The Storm

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These past few weeks have been ludicrous and the rollercoaster seemed endless. I have been struggling with issues of self for many years and I guess those issues will never end… however the last while they have been more difficult to handle than before.

Only yesterday I was given a deadline to work through my past, and I knew that this step was crucial. I knew this as I sat down today and chose to begin reviewing a book instead of dealing with my own problem; the problem with soul ties is that; they are unbreakable and when another soul needs to convey information, not only will you SEE it, but it hits home… not the space where you feel uncomfortable, but that vulnerable place in your mind where YOU are the only one who knows what your truth really is.

Druidry and Prayer is the title of the book and the author is also the carrier of what I believe to be a soul tie with my own – Nimue Brown.  When I first discovered (not officially met yet) Nimue I was simply looking for guidance in a spiritual world where Druid was the most fascinating term to me and yet; there was hardly any other living human in this or any country (to my knowledge) whom I could turn to for questions or even simple guidance. I found her blog (www.druidlife.wordpress.com) by accident and thereafter I did a bit of email and Facebook persuasion, I regret no second of it.

So from the very first chapter of this book I felt the real me (half dead and dehydrated on the inside) claw for the fluidity of ideas and Spirit.

‘You could read this book as an inspirational true life account with a passably happy ending. You can take it as the intellectual exploration with self as case study I originally intended.’

SELF.

The same self I had been beating on, hating and starving for the last few years… that self-  saw the glimmer of itself in this sentence and from there on… I realized that this book was going to throw me right into the midst of all of the things I was trying so damned hard not to face or even acknowledge.

This is not the review on Druidry and Prayer; this is my account of recalling to life a girl I thought was dead and gone.

I had been reading aloud and recording each chapter on my phone for deeper contemplation when my sister returned home… I had to stop halfway through chapter 3. I proceeded to immediately listen to what I had just read and jotted down some points I’d later use for a review…

‘Prayer is, in essence, an attempt at starting a conversation with something. There are many possible answers to consider here. I don’t think any are more right than any other – different people at different times may need to come at this in different ways.

We may be talking to ourselves. That might be in the sense of our most literal, actual being, or some ‘higher self’. Prayer in this context is a form of meditation and inner conflict resolution.’

Soon after that the recording ended and I lay there in the darkness of the oncoming storm safely in my room and I began to mumble.

“I pray to the cosmic consciousness and the bits of me I know are tired but still listening, to my higher self and to all things alive. I would like to be reminded of who I am; I would like to be gentler and less afraid of honesty and hard work. I pray that I may find it in myself to forgive myself for whatever I have done thus far to make me so bitter at everything I think I stand for, because I know that is far from who I truly I am…”

I got lost in this way and eventually I stopped… I felt like one feels when one first begins to realize that they are in love and I got up off the bed and went in search of a book that I could read while waiting for the next moment where I could read out loud.

Honestly, I have never had faith in my sister’s choice of reading material. However, since my goal was to be more soft and real I decided to judge less and spend some time in front of her book shelf. The first while was grueling but then a little red book with the title ‘The Invitation’ by Oriah Mountain Dreamer screamed at me and I took it.

‘It doesn’t interest me

What you do for a living.

I want to know what you ache for

And if you dare to dream

Of meeting your heart’s longing.’

I laughed out loud, I saw that self…  waking up from a nightmare somewhere inside and literally saying to me, “ Well, you asked for it; I’m awake – now make it worth my while!”

Half skeptical I retreated back into my room and read, like a kid starving for words, learning to read well for the first time…

‘I want to spiral close, almost touching, to the place we can feel the heat in the air between us, an unhurried journey as we sift through new scents of each other, letting them linger in our nostrils, breathing them in deeply, allowing our bodies and hearts to taste the impulse to move toward each other before we move.

I want to be courted by the truth. Let the stories that are telling our lives spin out in multi colored threads.  Don’t tell me too much too soon. Don’t hide anything. Tell the tales of your heart, offer them like perfect pearls coming up from the depths of the sea to be strung together, each gently clicking against the other, luminous and iridescent as they roll out of the moistness.’

I closed my eyes again and when I opened them I did so knowing exactly what I ache for.

The sky was black with blotches of grey and little spirals of white in between… the visible signs of the coming of a thunderstorm.

My most favorite human texted me just before and I even turned her conversation down for a while as my heart was pounding almost in my throat with excitement.

“I will now go be in the storm because I really miss that part of myself!”

So I did.

I walked down and it was dangerous… I knew it… I was afraid no doubt, but I was also happy and alive. I was feeding the self what the self really needs to survive. There were moments of pink and purple in the previously black and grey sky, they made my heart race and I had to breathe and remind myself to keep calm and to trust… Passion, Spirit, the aching to be fully alive, to remember what the wind feels like, the rain, the lightning and the sound of thunder all at the same time. I didn’t need to cry; the clouds were doing it for me.

I realized that as little as I am, and as mortal as I am… and as easily as the lightning could wipe me out of the Earth’s surface in that instant, my ideas are immortal and I have an obligation to remind every soul alike mine that they too can sit through the storm in awe and fear, but also in confidence that who they really are is what matters most and it is the storm that feeds our true self best.

My worried neighbors soon started looking out their windows and one even headed towards where the care taker lives, which is when I decided to retreat and not be spiteful; because after all these people were trying to protect me although I had never uttered a word to them before.

I wish that I could show you what a storm feels like.

I wish I had the words to describe how amazing it is to feel alive again.

So here’s my next pledge; that this blog page will not go to waste and that your eyes will be food for that self that so desperately clung on to stay alive.

I hope that in some way I will be food for your soul, your ideas, your SELF.

But for now:

‘It doesn’t interest me who you know or how you came to be here.

I want to know if you will stand in the center of the fire with me and not shrink back.’

And The Winner Is…

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After a day of many bad emotions I decided it urgent enough to make  my business everyone else’s. Tonight I rage! Yes! Rage against every law, every stupid rule that society has deemed fit to exist. I do not and will never truly within myself accept other people’s opinions on what is right and what is wrong. Disappointment to me is worse than pain. It is a feeling that leaves one with such a foul taste it makes nightmares seem like nightingales in comparison. My passion in one is compiled of hatred for religion and politics for they are one and the same… for societal norms… I hate that I have had to grow up in an emotionally and financially hostile environment, I hate the people involved in it being so. For the first time in ages I feel truly like an 8 year old – hiding in a corner again, crying tears of hatred and pretending that I don’t actually understand how this wheel of shit turns. 

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I have lived with broken, moulded, hard-working, honest fools. Yet I am doomed to be one of them because my stupid heart feels… it feels shame and pain and love and every other bullshit emotion that keeps us from
truly evolving. I feel like Vader before Vader if any of u know what I mean… I’m pissed off and I wish that I had it in me to be selfish enough to excel… to stand on top and laugh… laugh so hard that my heart ceases to beat. Is my idiocy worse, that I cannot allow my anger to overtake the bigger part of who I am? I love – I love a heart which wishes for me to be a just fool… a fool without fault… because I’ve been told;  I am a fool with potential… I am a fool who could slave the right way and earn the approval of monkeys that I barely care about anyway.
‘Monkeys killing monkeys killing monkeys over pieces of the ground. Silly monkeys, give them thumbs they’ll forge a blade a and beat a brother down; right in two.’

No Title Would Suffice

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1 Fox – 31 January 2015

Miracles happened the night Amanda Palmer rose like a phoenix out from under the cramped, cripples of sweaty armpits barely poised in waves of hysteria. I have never been a kiss-ass so let me be honest about where I stood in this scenario. Having always been a frantic Neil Gaiman fan I figured it wouldn’t hurt to witness the talent of the woman so loved by not only him but her fans as well. My lovely girlfriend had announced to me about 10 days prior that whatever plans we had for the 30th were now cancelled because Amanda Palmer was going to be performing and apart from thinking how disgustingly romantic the whole thing was to me… I must admit I did have those inexplicable butterflies of premonition.

1044455_637239739720994_360263404745826093_nHaving arrived at 15:00 to wait in line behind the personages that are her fans, one (although ordinary and unable to have the privilege of interviewing Amanda herself) could paint a portrait much more colorful and pleasant than that of many so called ‘super stars.’ The 28th of January was a house party held by none other than hers truly for the more dedicated of her SA fans and by the sound of it (which made me more hungry and grumpy than I already was at that point) there were a lot of rusks… There’s something wonderful about knowing that your rusks given as a gift would not be insulting to the receiver but on the contrary; appreciated immensely.

So there I was: staring at the empty space and looking at the microphone being totally clueless about what Amanda Palmer’s music was about; I kept nudging my girlfriend and moaning about how I desperately wished Neil Gaiman would have accompanied his wife so that my hungry eyes could stare in awe at both of them. Soon we engaged in conversations about creating… she mostly listened to me (as admittedly she does 95% of our relationship) and we got lost, in among all the good smells of Balkan Burgers,wine and all types of creatives.

1920485_638001532978148_786165877954101770_nThe bubble wrap to the left was actually in the shape of an Octopus, it was one of the great distractions to Amanda’s Grand Entree and it also was a gigantic fanning device. To me though, the Festival style Dragon, the butterfly Man and the rest of the creepy crowd crawlies ; reminded me of Mirror Mask – Written by Neil Gaiman and Designed by Dave McKean. So that’s how it began for me, comparing every little detail of the night to every little detail I’ve seen in Neil’s work. Now I am not an engaged fan, but from that night I vowed to change that. As I watched and listened to her perform Creep by Radiohead on her ukulele, I felt my soul drift off into a space that I had previously not been able to reach but always yearned for.

10440274_638001392978162_5213238944561282047_nI could rant on for eons about the atmosphere and genuine mastery of the evening. I could pretend that I know all about her musical history… truth is I don’t know much about any of that, only that we were all at the right place at the right time, and none of us will ever forget what the map of Tasmania looks like… we won’t forget that a woman needs not shave their own in order to be feminine or acceptable and in truth we should all know that we are exactly the people we have wanted to be. Her passion is fearsome, her playing the keyboard was at times so fast that I really struggled to take a decent photo. Not only does she accept rusks for presents, Amanda also played the keyboard standing the entire night and although that may not seem like a big deal I was close enough to witness the little physical evidences of her fatigue.

1797513_638000076311627_6251495066725619534_nSo my pledge is that when Amanda (this time with Neil) decides to visit us again, I will share it with you as soon as I read it, also that I will learn the lyrics to her songs so that I too may scream my heart out, and last but not least I pledge to be a less grumpy girlfriend who listens more and speaks less and who trusts her girlfriends judgement because clearly; she couldn’t ever be wrong.

Thank you for sharing the night with us Amanda, South Africa as a whole benefited from the magic you  spread that evening, thank you to all my readers. This is it for tonight : Iva10425146_638001639644804_8200265462630371444_n