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Online Reference For Body, Mind & Spirit

Term: Druidism

DEFINITION:
Druidism is the cultural and spiritual heritage of the Celtic peoples, a polytheistic religion originating in the archaic proto-Indo-European past. It was carried into Western Europe by Indo-European tribes speaking Celtic dialects.

Druidism is a spiritual path in harmony with the natural flow of the cosmos. It is one of the many folk or “earth” religions that can brig us back into reverence for living things and the disciplines of hard work, productivity, physical strength and health. It beckons us to follow the wisdom of our ancestors.
Related Encyclopedia Articles
Celtic Magic
The Druids and filídh were known for their divination and mysticism. These took manyforms, such as the learning and verse forms for composing blessings and curses,and the memorization of old hymns, chants and incantations. The basic song wascalled a cantalon in Gaulish (cetal in Old and Middle ...
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Celtic Religion
Druidism can be used synonymously with the phrases Celtic religion and Celtic magic. In order to enter into this magico-religious system, a familiarity with mythology is necessary. Celtic mythology is best represented in the Irish Book of Invasions or Lebor Gábala Érenn. These tales give a ...
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Druidic Vestments
The appearance of the Druid is known to us from two main sources: Greco-Roman writings and medieval Irish tradition. There is also some evidence from Irish and Scottish folklore. Druids wore white tunics, which in early Ireland were knee-length. The concept of their wearing full white robes was ...
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Festivals
A year was called a bleidoni (twelve months, or thirteen in a leap year), and it was divided into two main seasons: samon, "summer," and giamon, "winter." A sonnocingos, "solar-march," was the term for a solar year of 365.5 days. A bleidoni had four festivals: Samhain (sah-win), ...
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Glossary of Druidism
Adbertos (Gaulish) - An offering or ritual in which something is given to the Deuoi. Andumnos (Gaulish) - The Underworld / Otherworld / Netherworld which corresponds to the Greek Elysian Fields and Tartaros, and to the Teutonic Valhall and Hel.  There are many isles of the Celtic ...
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Nemeton: Sacred Space
A clearing marked off for ritual was called a nemeton in Gaulish. It’s shape was usually either square or rectangular, but sometimes round. The square or rectangle represented the heavens. Round nemetons represented the earth and the manifested realm, and were used for royal inaugurations. The ...
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Neo-Druidism Since the 1700s
The last vestiges of the Filídhecht schools were stamped out in the 1600s as Elizabethan English conquered and destroyed most of Ireland’s remaining Gaelic culture. The "plantations" of Ulster, and the extension of the Pale beyond Leinster into Munster and all the way to Connacht wiped ...
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Oral Tradition and the Druidic Class
The ancient Druids considered it profane to record their teachings in writing. All of their teachings were handed down by spoken word in verses or stories. People at different levels taught different categories of the ancient lore. The highest in rank of the learned men of each Celtic people was ...
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Rebirth in the Celtic Tradition
In Old Celtic (Gaulish-Brittonic and Goidelic), the word for rebirth was ategenos (Old Irish aithghen). In this doctrine of limited reincarnation the spirit of an ancestor was reborn among his or her own kin. This means that certain inherited characteristics and even Deuoi (Tuatha Dé Danann gods) ...
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The Druid's Gem
Pliny the Elder, in his Natural History, mentions the Druids manufacturing an object called the ovum anguinum, or "snake’s egg," which in Gaulish would have been called ouion natracos. In British and Irish tradition it was known as the snake’s gem, or Druid’s gem. The Druid’s gem was a ...
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The End of Time
Eschatology is the end of time in a religious system. Celtic eschatology is not "linear" but cyclical, like the Hindu and Teutonic cycles of time. The Teutons believed in Ragnorok, which would mark the ending of this age. The world would be destroyed by fire and ice, the gods and giants would fight ...
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The Future of Druidism
As long as there are people who remember their Celtic heritage and its contributions to modern culture and civilization, and the legends, folk-tales and myths of the Celtic peoples, there will be those who dream about the ancient Celtic magic, about Finn, CúChullain and the other heroes, the ...
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The Realms
According to ancient Celtic beliefs, three main realms co-exist: an Underworld associated with the past, an earthly realm of the middle world associated with manifested reality, and an Upperworld associated with potential reality and all possible futures where abstract concepts dwell with the ...
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Time
The earliest Indo-European measurement of time was by the moon, and this reveals the nature of the Celtic calendar. The Celts never deviated from lunar time measurement, as their Druids had preserved it from the Indo-European tradition. Luckily for Celtophiles today, ancient Celtic calendars were ...
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Who Were the Druids?
To mention the word Druid is to evoke images of ancient wizards and wonder-workers from old Irish sagas, Welsh legends, Caesar’s Gallic Wars and Scottish folktales. If you have read about the Druids, you’ve probably retained one of their many images from literature and legend. The popular ...
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