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" A good traveller has no fixed plans,

and is not intent on arriving "

Lao Tzu

A Beginner’s Guide

Published by Philip Carr-Gomm

Foreword to A Beginner’s Guide by Cairistiona Worthington

‘With the blessing of the Salmon of Wisdom and of the element Water,

I call upon the powers of the West…’

from Druid Ceremony

It’s not hard to rediscover the wisdom of the Druids – the wisdom of those ancient spiritual teachers of the Western lands. It’s written in the old stories, the old pre-Christian laws of Ireland, the wisdom-triads of Wales, the folk customs of Brittany, Cornwall, Scotland and England. But even more so – it’s written in the very land itself; and as this book so clearly shows – we can recapture this knowledge, and build on it to make Druidry a living spiritual practice that is intensely relevant to our lives today.

In the old days, the Celts and the Druids would give thanks to the Goddess and would ask for Her help in healing, and in the granting of wishes, by casting precious objects into sacred wells, pools and rivers. They would take something that was of value to them – and with a heart-felt prayer – would watch it sink beneath the surface of the water, down into the depths of the Mother. Nowadays – forgetting the origin of this custom – we throw coins into wishing wells, hardly believing our wishes could come true in this way. But still we do it. Somewhere a part of us knows of the power of water, of the well, of the depths. And knowing the origin of this custom helps us to understand the importance the ancient Druids placed on the Goddess – despite the common misperception that Druids used to worship the sun and were patriarchal.

Nowadays just as many women follow the Druid way as men, and the Goddess, with her consort the God, is fundamental to Druid spirituality. Here in this book we discover their significance in Druidry, and we discover, too, how we can start to work with Druidry as a living spirituality that can transform our lives.

Philip Carr-Gomm