Thursday, January 31, 2013

New BIO-Engineering Techs

I am always looking for some great ideas for the community. There are several in this article on
Check it out! There is even a guided growth 'tree' house! I so nerded out on this article!

This is well worth checking out. This could be a great idea for growing some of the buildings as experiments for the community. I am so excited!!!

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Understand what is really happening

          In our nation we are blind. We are blind to the truth of reality by the truth we believe is real. There are so many things going on in our nation currently. There are so many untruths running around out there that it is frightening at how much anger and rage they stir in the hearts of our citizens.

          One of the things that really brought this to light for me was a young man who blasted me because I pointed out the 'facts' that were being used on a posting were not correct and really needed primary sources to seem valid. He went on a rant about how I was un-American because I supported gun control and that I did not know anything because I was not out there defending my countries freedom. I have several issues with this. 1.) I am not out there defending my country because a. when I tried to sign up they flat out told me NO because I was 'queer' and b. because people with his mentality beat, raped and left me for dead which one of them gave me HIV. 2.) He nor any other military individual is actually defending our freedom. To do that there would have to be another nation trying to take over our sovereignty. There are not tanks sitting outside our borders, or fighter craft over our skies, no one... attacking our nation on a military level. Yes a few fanatical religious people bombed us... guess what that is NOTHING new. We have had Christian religious fanatics bomb us, we have had American terrorists bomb us, and we even had an attack on the World Trade Center when I was kid. So no you are NOT defending our freedom from anyone. 3.) There is not requirement in out US Constitution that military service is required to have a vote, option, or influence on our nation.

          The other thing that really stood out was the whole fight over guns that are currently going on. I hear from gun owners 'no one is taking my guns unless it is over my dead body!' Really? And who is it that is trying to take your guns? Who is trying to totally disarm American's? No one! The government is tightening gun control. This is something that should have been done ages ago. Gun control is NOT disarming America. You are still allowed to own hand guns, you are still allowed to own riffles, you are still allowed to own a shot gun... those are arms. What they do want to do is ban military grand weapons... and as my friend in the paragraph above mentioned most of you are 'not in the military'. What reason can you have to own a fully automatic assault rifle unless you plan on killing people in large numbers? That is what these weapons are designed for. It would be like own a rocket launcher and saying it was for the defense of your home... Really? From what? A T-Rex? From alien abduction?

          So if you have a bone to pick about what is happening in America... plus be a decent human being and show at least the smallest sign of intelligence. Present your side of the argument with a sound position. Otherwise you just look like a complete and total idiot. No one is going to take you seriously. I know I do not!

Monday, January 21, 2013

Understanding Private Practice in ADF

          The other day there was a posting on one of the ADF discussion boards that I found rather disturbing.  An individual brought up the issue of a crisis of faith in ADF. This crisis of faith was being triggered by the perceived mandate that all individuals must honor the 8 High Days regardless of their hearth culture. This is the furthest thing from the truth, at least for a solitary and non-Grove related practices.

Photo 1
          The ADF mandate for honoring the 8 High Days is for Groves, our form of Church service. This requirement is not there for Protogroves at all. As a public religion we all perform rites and ritual cycles in loosely the same manner and times. This allows anyone from one Grove to go across country or the world and attend a ritual at another Grove and not be completely lost. But this is a requirement for Groves!

          There are some of the study programs within ADF that do require the observation of the High Days, and even that doesn't require ALL of the High Days be ADF ritual (Dedicates Program). But outside of study programs there are not many requirements placed on private practice. So if you are an ADF Druid that works as a solitary and you are say of a Hellenic hearth culture, there is no reason what so ever that you MUST following 8 High Day rituals. Matter of fact if you are a solitary participation there is no reason you have to stick with the Grove mandate of Indo-European cultural deities either. ADF is not in the business of controlling what people do in their private practice, even in Public practice there are only loosely controlled guidelines.

Photo 2
          So in the end, do not have a crisis of faith over what you may or may not be doing wrong in your Private practice. You are free to work as your heart directs you. Of course there are limitations even with that, do not be offering blood sacrifices, for example, and calling it ADF. That is WELL beyond being ADF.

Photo 1
Thomas, Kirk. Kirk-Fire.jpg.The Druid's Progress. Google Image Search. 1/17/2013.

Photo 2
Crawford, David.Small-shrine.2010.

Thursday, January 17, 2013

The Right to Bare Arms.... HUH!

          There is such a HUGE buzz going on about the 'Right to Bare Arms' but interestingly enough it is only about guns. The original amendment of the Constitution does not specifically mention guns per say, just the 'Right to Bare Arms.' So why then is that the most specific 'Arms' people fight about?

          I mean really, there are other things which should be considered as well. Here is a prime example: I graduated school in May of 2011. In Winter of 2010 I was trying to pull my Blistex out of my pocket because my lips were getting seriously chapped from the weather. Well of course most of the contents of my pocket come spilling out. Of course being a good Georgia farm boy one of the items was a pocket knife, this was of course in a class room. Now let it be said that I am no wimp about my pocket knifes, it is about 3.5" folded so you can guess it's a fairly large knife when unfolded. So my professor sees it, leaves the room, and comes back with campus security. OH OH OH guess what? I got asked to leave campus and was suspended for a week for having a deadly weapon on campus. IT'S A FREAKING POCKET KNIFE! Besides... I studied martial arts. I am a second degree black belt... I can be lethal with a spoon, a fork, heck even a bamboo skewer. And you are going to tell me I cannot carry my pocket knife? Heck for that matter I have a nearly 2 ton weapon of fine Swedish steal I can run you over with!

          I have since learned that anything over 2" is illegal to carry in a pocket... insert dirty comment (snickers). Really? You are going to tell me that pocket knives are more regulated than GUNS? That is insane! So all you people who are screaming and yelling about assault riffles being banned... SUCK IT UP!!! If I can't carry a 3.5" blade in my pocket then you do not get your fully automatic mega clip assault riffle designed for killing in mass! So if you are going to scream about the regulations on 'Arms' start screaming about the fact simple things like knives are heavily regulation... or just walk into town with a bow and arrows slung over your shoulder and see what kind of reaction you get from cops. (shakes head) People pick battles to fight that actually hold weight... that are logical... not ones that make you look like some insane redneck from the deepest darkest parts of the woods.

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

A Pan Indo-European Imbolc Ritual

This was a ritual my old Grove used during one of the Imbolc rituals. We wanted to honor the hearth deities of each of our cultures. This was the most exciting ritual we had done so far. We used oil lamps as flames we each carried home with us so that the Imbolc fire was spread to the homes of all.

Precession Song: (Bardic)  We approach the Sacred Grove with hearts and minds, flesh and bones, Join us now in ways of old, we have come home. We have come home.

Purification of the people
World Tree Meditation (Facilitator)

Consecration of Place and Time

Offering to the Outsiders: Outdwellers, turn from our grove!
Offering to the Earth Mother:  Beloved Earth Mother, be in our grove!
Offering to Poetic Inspiration:  Spirit of Inspiration, be in our grove!

Recreation of the Cosmos and Establishing Scared Center

Invocation of Raven:  Honored Raven, come to our grove!

Opening of the Gate:      Well, Tree, Fire

By Fire and by Water, between the Earth and Sky
We stand like the World-Tree rooted deep, crowned high. (repeat once)

Come we now to the Well, the eye and the mouth of Earth,
Come we now to the Well, and silver we bring,
Come we now to the Well, the waters of rebirth,
Come we now to the Well, together we sing:


Gather we at the Tree, the root & the crown of all,
Gather we at the Tree, Below & above,
Gather we at the Tree, Together we make our call,
Gather we at the Tree, In wisdom & love.


We will kindle a Fire, Bless all, and with harm to none,
We will kindle a Fire, and offering pour,
We will kindle a Fire, A light 'neath the Moon & Sun,
We will kindle a fire, our spirits will soar.

CHORUS (with gusto)

All: Let the gates be OPEN!
                Let the gates be OPEN!
                Let the gates be OPEN!


(Facilitator): The gates are OPEN!

Kindred Invocations

Offering to Ancestors:  Beloved Ancestors, accept our offering!
Offering to Nature Spirits: Spirits of Nature, accept our offering!
Offering to the Gods:  Mighty gods, accept our offering!

Song: (Bardic)       Gods & Dead & Mighty Sidhe, Powers of earth & sky and sea. By fire & well, by scared tree, Offerings we make to ye!

Main Rite

Kindreds of the Occasion Invocation:

Invocation to Hestia:

Gentle and eldest and youngest daughter of Cronus and Rhea, we call to you.
Virgin maiden of fire, tender of the Sacred Fire on Olympus, we call to you.
Sister to the Great Zeus, teacher of human society, who’s altar lives in every hearth on Earth, we call to you.

As in days of old we call onto you and ask that you be always in our hearts and homes.
Great and Glorious Hestia, you who has no throne upon Olympus, you who’s true throne lives in the hearts and homes of all human kind, hear our call!

Accept this offering and be with us now.

(Pour offering of milk, olive oil and honey)

Invocation to Agni:

Son of Brahma, Lord of the World, Kind of the fire gods empowered by Takki, Whose supreme wisdom burns all delusion from the minds of men, we call to you!

Immortal ever youthful god, who is power is reborn each morning with the dawning of the new day, we call to you!
Blessed messenger to the gods, holder of the Sacred Offering Fires, we call to you!

Agni, riding your divine Ram, we invite you into our hearts and homes for you are among the Hearth deities and therefore hold a special place in the lives of human kind. Be with us now and always!

Accept this offering!

(Give offering of Ghee and libation)

Invocation to Brigit:

Daughter of The Dagda and the wife of Bres, we call to you!
Breo Saighead! The folded one, we call to you!

Fire of Inspiration, patron goddess of poetry and spoken word, we call to you!

Fire of the Forge, patron goddess of smithcraft and the martial arts, we call to you!
Fire of the Hearth, patron goddess of the Sacred Flame, of healing and fertility, we call to you!
Exulted One, Lady of the Sacred Flame of Kildare, patron goddess of Druids who is known by many names, we call to you, this your holy day!

Great Brigit, maiden of Wells we call to you. We welcome you into our hearts and home. We ask that you be with us now and always.

Accept this offering!

(Give offering of Drink)

Invocation to Frigg:

Wondrous and Frigg, whose hall in Asgard is Fensalir, we call to you.
Wife to the Great Odin, patron of marriage, goddess of love, we call to you.
Mother to Balder, patron of motherhood, goddess of fertility, we call to you.

Frigg, you who are the Mistress of every art of the home and sacred fire, we call to you this day to be with us, we ask that you with us in heart and home now and always.

Glorious Frigg, hear our call!
Accept this offering and be with us now!

(Give offering of Drink)

Praise Offerings: (First four rounds to the Kindred of the Occasion)

Main Offerings (Prayer of Sacrifice):

Goddesses and God of hearth and home,
Divine Beings of human society,
We, the people of the Ozark Mountain Protogrove,
come before you to give you honour and thanks on this day of Imbolc.

Through you, human kind grew from hunter-gathering nomadic people to thriving societies,
Your arts of the home center of our success.

Fill our hearts and homes with your love,
Enlighten our minds with your light,
Give meaning to the works of our hands with your inspiration,
Walk with us Great Ones! Accept this offering of work from our hands!

(Give the offering of the Braided Bread.)

Taking of the Omen:

Working: Blessing of the Sacred Flames to carry home with each of us.

(Take each lamp or candle and light it from the Sacred Fire. As you do so say)
From the light of one to the light of another!
(once all flames have been handed out everyone will chant the following while holding the lit candles/lamps. Once done let the flames burn throughout the rest of the ritual)

Sacred Flame, Holy Fire;
Dancing bright, higher, higher,
With each spark as we depart,
Oh Bright Ones, we pray, bless this heart!

Cup Litany:

                                You among the Mighty Dead, ancestors to us all,
                                Offerings we have made, offerings you have received.
                                We ask that you bless these Waters so we may share in the wisdom of
Your great Knowledge!

(All)                         The gifts of the Ancestors for the people of the Ancestors!

                                You of land, sea, and sky; both mortal and spirit alike,
You who are the Nature Spirits,
Offerings we have made, offerings you have received.
We ask that you bless these Waters so we may share in the warmth of your Great Kinship!

(All)                         The gifts of the Nature Spirits for the kin of the Nature Spirits!

                                You among the divine and gods and goddesses of all time,
                                Offerings we have made, offerings you have received.
                                We ask that you bless these Waters so we may share in the great Light of
Your Truth!

(All)                         The gifts of the Gods for the children of the Gods!

                                In the name of Memory, the preserving shrine.(Well)
                                In the name of Earth, our common mother.(Tree)
                                In the name of Truth, the light which has no beginning and no end.(Fire)
                                May we never know thirst or need while in your service. Awen! (Make sign of ADF sigil over the Waters of Life)

End of Rite

Return the Waters of the Earth:

Thank deity of occasion:

Thank the Gods:

Thank the Nature Spirits:

Thank the Ancestors:

Thank the Spirits of Inspiration:

Thank the Earth Mother:

De-Hallowing of the Fire, Well, & Tree; Close the Gate, and thank Raven

Closing Meditation

End of ritual

Song: (Bardic)   Walk with wisdom from this hallowed place. Walk not in sorrow, our roots shall ere embrace. May strength be your brother, and honour be your friend, And luck be your lover until we meet again.

The Three Sacred Hallows: A Druid's Gateways

          One of the most important ideas in any magical tradition is the use of Gateways. In most modern Pagan traditions people use the the Gateways that derive from Christian and Jewish mystical systems. They call upon the four corners; the for elements, the four angels, the four points, the four Watch Towers, etc. But these are not seen as traditional to our ancestors, especially among Druid traditions.

          With that in mind I want to take this post to talk about the Three Sacred Hallows, as envisioned by ADF and through my personal understanding of them.

          The Three Sacred Hallows are the Fire, Tree, and Well. These are iconic ideas that can be seen through most of the Indo-European nations of the past. I have talked about these in another section but I want to talk about them now in their magical aspects, as Gateways of power.

          As a Gateway of power each Hallow has its own association. The Well is connected to the Underworld which is seen as the powers of death and rebirth. It is the power of cleansing. But this is also were the Waters of Life are. The Waters of Life hold all the knowledge of the past, of every incarnation, of every life ever lives. It is the power of the unconscious mind. It is also the power of transitional cycles of the soul.

          The Tree is connected to the Middleworld, our world. It is the power of stability, of life, of growing things. It is the power of our Earth Mother, of regeneration. It is the power of protection. But is is also a slowly changing force, subtler energies, those of grounding. The Tree is the power of transition through the worlds. It is a connecting power.

          The Fire is connected to the Upperworld, that of the gods and the heavens. It is the power that drives creation, It is the power of the gods. It is the provider of energy for all life that grows on the Earth Mother. It is a power of purification and transformation. But it is also the power of light. It is the power which turns away the darkness.

          For me, using the Sacred Hallows in this way has become much more powerful than the use of the so called 'traditional' elements. Give it a try... see how it works for you, especially if you are a practicing Druid.

How do you know?

'How do you know you’re still in love with someone?

I never thought that would be such a hard questions for someone to answer. Yet it appears it is. Though I think even more important question is how does someone get to the point they have to ask that question.

Both questions are things people should think about. Think about what makes your heart race weekend you see or think of your loved one. Think about how our what you are doing that makes someone wonder if you are still in love with them

All relationships are living things a dear friend once told me. You must teens them, you must give the time and affection to help them grow; you much prune and fertilize they so that they have the nourishment they need to bloom.

Just some thoughts to think about when you look into your partners eyes... When you see that smile that makes your heart race or that laugh that warms you to the deepest parts of your soul.

Monday, January 14, 2013

Deadly Pollution Levels

          On DVICE today I read a horrifying article. It was about the pollution levels in Beijing. It appears that the pollution level went from 300+ to well over 700, this is considered extremely hazardous to humans. This is what we are doing to our world with our incessant need for more... for not forcing ourselves to live a greener life. We are making the air of our world un-breathable even for ourselves.

Take a moment and read the article. It is truly heart breaking to know there are humans living in this kind of condition... it is even more heart breaking they allow it to continue:

Airpocalypse: Record pollution chokes Beijing

Airpocalypse: Record pollution chokes Beijing

          This is one of the major reasons I want to built a sustainable green living community. I want to reduce the impact I have on the environment and on the world. I want to be an example of how humanity can come together and live a green live that is enjoyable and in a modern context.

          Here is another terrifying image of the smog issue that Beijing experienced. This really shows how bad this was. WAKE UP humanity!!! We are killing ourselves!

NASA satellite images show full scale of Beijing pollution cloud

Why do people think you must go primitive to be green?

         I was talking with some friends yesterday about the sustainable living Druid community I want to build. They were extremely excited to see I was interested in it and started talking about going totally primitive. They were not the first people who immediately responded this way to my idea.

          So Why do people think you must go primitive to be green? I mean really... there is no need at all to go back to the 1800's way of living to be green. I am not really sure why anyone would WANT to go back to a private way of living.
          In this day and age people can live a green sustainable life while still having modern conveyances. To be off the grid you use modern renewable energy sources like wind turbines, solar panels, bio-diesel fuels, and hydro power turbines. The modern improvements give much more efficient power generation. And for appliances, we have energy star certified things or when it comes to a refrigerator there are propane powered units, etc.
          So again I ask "Why do people think you must go primitive to be green?" What a ridiculous idea! Now if you WANT to go primitive... sure go right ahead but I do tend to like things like running hot water, indoor plumping, internet, things like that.

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Religious Freedoms... and Federal Law

          So the Green family which owns the Hobby Lobby chain of stores is refusing to abide by the Obama-Care changes and is having to pay $1.3 million dollars per day, reportedly, in fines. The protest going around says "Support Hobby Lobby, A Company that Obeys God Rather than Men". And honestly I am happy for them that they are a Christian family. Good for them! And good for them for standing up for their beliefs.

        HOWEVER... we are a nation that is based off Freedom of religion AND separation of religion and the State. This means that the government can not make unreasonable laws regarding religion. Again totally cool and totally understand that. Here is the HOWEVER... Hobby Lobby is an incorporated company NOT a 501c3 organization which a Church would fall into. There for it is subject to the laws and regulations set by local, state, and federal government bodies. It is NOT a Church. There for as a company they are breaking federal law by refusing to abide by the Obama-Care laws.

          So what Hobby Lobby is doing is extremely UN-AMERICAN. They are bucking against the federal laws because they feel their religious freedom is being stepped on. Well no it isn't. You are a company. You must follow the laws that ALL companies must or be fined.

          I love how if a Christian person owns a business and uses that business in an unlawful or unethical business practices then runs around screaming religious freedoms when they get caught.

Axioms: XX. Law of Intelligence

“The Magician’s Companion: A Practical & Encyclopedic Guide to Magical & Religious

Bill Whitcomb, 1997
Llyewellyn Publications

XX. Law of Intelligence

Any pattern of sufficient complexity will act intelligent when treated as an entity.

A pattern more complex than ourselves could be said to be more intelligent than we
are. Keep in mind that the human brain is still far more complex than the most advanced
computer yet built.

This law can be seen in the use of Runes. Runes have become more complex over time because of the power and belief poured into them. Through their use they have become a form of intelligence... so it can be said that they are complex enough to be seen as an entity. Many Rune casters and users will tell you that the Runes are alive and very much aware.

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Rev. Raven Mann - You will be greatly missed.

I was looking at Facebook today and saw a posting that strike me hard leaving me very sad.

One of ADF's Priests departed from this light today.

Bright Blessings dear one. May the Kindred embrace you and carry you in love to the Summerlands where our Ancestors away you. May you find rest and healing from the cares of this life. May you peace beyond measure.

May the Kindred hold your friends and family left behind to help strengthen them while they grieve your departure of this world.

This the posting By Rev. Kirk Thomas, ADF
Missing a friend - Rev. George Lee (Raven Mann)

This morning Rev. George Lee (Raven Mann) passed away in the presence of his wife. He had been in the hospital for an operation due to his failing health and had an unexpected blood clot in his lungs. He was 49.

Raven Mann was an effective priest and ritual leader, and also an accomplished liturgist. He served as the ADF Preceptor during the latter half of Rev. Skip Ellison's term as Archdruid and made many contributions to the deliberations of the ADF Clergy Council. His passing will be a great loss to ADF.

Our thoughts and prayers go out to his wife, Rev. Kelly Kingston (Carrion Mann) and their daughter Morrighan at this sad time. We also pray that he may pass quickly to the Otherworlds in the company of his Ancestors.

Raven, we will miss you, and we pray that you will lift a glass in the Otherworlds when we call on our Ancestors in the years to come. With cries of "ghosti!" we trust that you have now joined the ranks of the Ancient Wise for the benefit of us all.

Goodbye for now, old friend. 

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Easy Small Hanging Garden

I am always searching for ways that I, and others, can grow small gardens of herbs and vegetables in nearly any place you live. There are so many amazing ideas, so many possibilities. Here is one that uses recycled materials. I am going to look into doing this at my apartment. I think it would be an amazing way to grow things. I found it on Pinterest.

So take the time to look into doing something like this. See what you can do or make so you can grow even the smallest amount of food for yourself.

7 Steps to Building a Gutter Garden
  1. Find old lengths of roof gutter (anything lying around in the garage or even the recycled kind if there is somewhere in your hometown with recycled building materials).
  2. Attach to the sunny side of your garage, an old chain link fence, or a wooden one.
  3. At each end of the gutter, place a piece of screen, also salvage materials, to hold in the compost or planting soil (this will hold in the soil while also allowing the excess water to drain to the gutter below).
  4. Place the gutters in a way that the gutter below can capture any run-off from the gutter above, as that is nutrient rich soil that you will be creating (remember those toys we had as kids, where the ball rolled down one slope then dropped to the one below to roll in the opposite direction?  Same thing here).
  5. Underneath the very bottom gutter, place a bucket at the end that can capture what will be a rich, smoothie-like compost that can be recycled back into the top gutter.
  6. Add seeds for lettuce, spinach, radishes, herbs (nothing too heavy like winter squash or potatoes and nothing that requires too much depth to grow).