Welcome to the Home page of the Dorsetgrove

A Druid Grove based in Dorset

   

 

                                                                                                                                                              

How  did you get here today

 

Our photo Gallery

 

 

All our Rituals start at Midday

We meet up around 11.30 am

 

Yule December 10th

 

Our Rituals for 2017

Imbolc 4th Febuary

Ostara 25th March

Beltane 6th May

Litha 24th June

Lammas 19th August

Mabon September 23rd

Samhain 28th October

Yule 23rd December

 

 

Carrying staffs of Oak and Yew
Birch and Beech, to tell the truth;
Wearing cloaks of whites and blues,
And the emerald of woods.
Walking barefoot on the land,
In the forest and the sand;
Telling stories, learning myths,
Cutting mistletoe with scythes.
Bearing names of ancient tribes,
Making music, poems, and rites.
Women, men, of war and peace,
To the Hag offer a kiss.
To the Stars they gaze at night,
To the Land they roam and stride.
They have seen the wave to crush,
They have heard the knock of thrush,
They have heard the voice of gods,
They claim victory and loss.
Who would dare to speak alone
In a grove or standing stone?
Who would dare the path to tread?
For a Druid of old once said
Only a brave one or a wise,
Or Perfect Fool will rise,
To defend what once seemed dead
And claim a Quest the light to shed.
(From "Bards' Forgotten Tales")


The Dorsetgrove Dress code for our Rituals

If you have Robes/Cloaks or any other ritual wear it would be nice if you were to wear them.

Rita (Paganalia)

can help anyone who would like anything made.

If you don’t have any ritual wear, then we ask that you wear something that is not your everyday wear.

Some clothing that is special to you is fine, a bit like the Sunday best that people use to wear.

We think by putting on different robes or clothing gives you a lift above the normal everyday life as you enter the circle.

Dorset Grove Magazine

This month’s Dorset Grove magazine, “One Foot In The Grove” has now been sent out. If anyone would like a copy please contact Dennis. (If you are not on his FB friends list you will need to give an email address). The deadline for articles for next month’s copy is 20th August. We would love to hear from you whether you have a single article or wish to contribute a regular feature. Poetry is also most welcome as are items for the Dorset Grove Freecycle (why take it to the dump when someone else can do it for you!). All articles must be original, your own work and not subject to copyright.

 

 

Dorset Grove Initiation

 

On the face of it, initiation into the Dorset Grove may, to the casual observer seem quite bizarre. It contains elements that some might associate with Masonic or Templar rites and other elements adapted from other Pagan paths. So what is it all about?

The simple answer is – symbolism. Symbolism is important to all types of ritual and our initiation is no different. One difference between our initiation and initiation into other, more secretive organisations is that the initiate is totally aware of what is going to happen. The initiation is not some form of “ordeal” for the initiate and the process and symbolism is explained to them beforehand. After all, what is the point of symbolism if the person being initiated doesn’t understand it? On a lot of occasions when our members are initiated, uninitiated people may be present, so for their benefit I will explain the process here.

Firstly, we bind the initiate’s hands with chains. It is important to note that initiation is a rite of passage from an old way of life to a new one. The chains, when removed represent the release from traditional indoctrination and teaching into a new, personal path of freedom and exploration, unhindered by the initiate’s past lives. The chains represent the initiate’s past and are removed and cast aside.

The initiate is also hooded. This also represents the initiate’s past life and when removed represents the change from being kept in darkness to being released to explore their new path. The initiate, when wearing the hood is also led by other Grove members around the outside of the circle. This represents the trust that the initiate is putting in their fellow members. After all, for all they know when the hood is removed they might find themselves in the car park! (that never happens).

The initiate also wears a noose. This may at first glance seems macabre but again is purely symbolic. Nobody is going to be hung or even threatened! It represents the importance of discretion in being a member of the Grove. It is symbolic of the importance of being privy to the innermost workings of the Grove.

Before swearing their oath the initiate is also “scourged”. Nobody gets flayed alive and nobody gets hurt! The scourge is merely symbolic of the trials and setbacks that the initiate is going to come across on their path (no pain, no gain!). It shows that just because someone has chosen this path it doesn’t mean that life is going to be a bed of roses and they will suffer setbacks, some of which will hurt but must be endured with a determination to move forward.

When swearing their oath a blade is held to the initiate’s heart. This is not a threat. It represents the gravity of the oath they are making. Showing gravity makes the oath more meaningful for the initiate, after all, oaths are not to be taken lightly. Nobody is going to be stabbed if they break their oath!

So, as you can see symbolism is very important to us but what is perhaps more important is the understanding of the symbolism because without the understanding it would be just what it appears to be, a strange ritual with weird things going on! Having read and understood the above, if you find yourself at one of our rituals that involves initiation we hope that the knowledge of the symbolism will enhance your enjoyment of the ceremony as much as it does for the initiate.

Initiation however is more than simply a public declaration of belonging. To the initiate it goes much deeper. To the initiate it is a deeply moving experience where that person has made a conscious decision to commit themselves to the deeper mysteries and philosophies of Druidry. It is a commitment to grow in the search for knowledge and understanding and to stand by those things learnt in every aspect of their lives, not something to be entered into lightly. It is also a commitment that is carried on for the rest of their lives and the ceremony is a public declaration of this. Anyone considering initiation must ask themselves this question: will my life permanently change afterwards? If the

answer is no then they are not ready for initiation.

If or when you decide you would like to be initiated in the Dorset Grove there are many things you have to realize before it can become possible.

firstly, it take from six months to a year before it can happen.

you need to prove to us why you want to do it. it is a serious commitment to the Grove  and to all the other members.

not to be taken lightly, as you need to attend all the rituals and be seen to be taking an active role, not just at rituals but in the life of the Grove until it becomes more of a way of life.

initiation is not a pre-requisite to belong to the grove; it is a result of belonging and is a public declaration of a desire to take your Druidic path to a new, deeper level.

so if you just want to put another notch on your staff, then it's not for you

 

Dennis Andrew

Dorset Grove

 

Some of our Rituals in Writing

 

 

Things to consider regarding

Internet Only courses

Joining an online training course is sometimes not such an easy decision as it seems as there are all sorts of things to consider. Firstly, you have to consider whether the course is the right one for you. Is it covering the area you want to study? Many courses that are online only are rigid in structure and don’t allow for any deviation from the designed course so you must carefully review the content of the course to make sure it is exactly what you want to study. Some online courses are entirely automated and have no flexibility and this can be very frustrating!

Secondly, you need to consider content. There are many courses online that are the product of one person’s thoughts and they have decided that their exclusive philosophy has to be shared with the world. Check the cont

Jent. Is it something you are familiar with? Do you have any awareness of the subject matter of the course or is it delving into realms that are totally “off the wall”? Make sure that the course appeals to the path that you are on and expands upon things that you already have an awareness of.

Thirdly, consider where the course is being offered from. Is it a group or organisation you have heard of or can easily get online information on? If it isn’t then it is probably an organisation consisting of just one person and you must, as in the previous point seriously consider the content. Unfortunately, within the realm of Pagan training there are no officially recognised qualifications by a national governing body so any qualification of those providing the course must be down to the credibility of the providers.

Finally, when considering an online only course, also consider taking a course that also offers feedback and discussion offline as this will provide a broader structure for discussion and a far wider degree of interaction both with those providing the course and other students on it.

 

 

Rules of joining this Grove

Respect

You need to show respect to all the other  members, respect their views, their paths, their ideas, their names, their opinions and their questions.

You don’t have to agree with any of them, but you will respect their right to believe in what they want and do.

If you can not do this, then you will be ask to leave after one warning.

Wildfox

Our facebook page  

 

http://www.facebook.com/pages/The-Dorset-Grove/174170795973574

 

 

If you would like to join the Grove

Email 

Dennis Andrew dpnandrew42@yahoo.com

or

iantmp190@gmail.com

 

 

 

 

What is a Druid

What is a Druid? On the face of it that seems a straightforward question with a short definitive answer. Unfortunately it’s not that simple. Ask a hundred people (including Druids) and you will probably get a hundred different answers, from the media stereotype image to deep philosophical ramblings that leaves the person asking the question even more confused!

To begin to answer ‘what is a Druid’ first requires us to establish what a Druid isn’t. A Druid certainly isn’t an elderly man dressed all in white mumbling about the sun, or indeed a Druid has nothing at all to do with new-age spirituality or searching for answers to life’s questions by absorbing a load of guff from a so called enlightened guru with a huge ego. Many people have a preconceived idea that Druids are the guardians of some sort of secret of nature that sets them apart from everyone else. If that’s true then my Druidic friends have been keeping these secrets to themselves for an awfully long time for I am well and truly in the dark!

We are also not the custodians of the traditions of ancient Druidry, carefully maintaining a tradition that goes back to beyond the dark ages. Modern Druidry can only look back and wonder at the practices of the ancient Druids as we know very little about them and virtually nothing about their philosophy and traditions.

Now let’s discuss the hard part of the answer. What is a Druid? Speaking generically you could say that Druidry is a philosophy and a faith, but it goes much deeper than that. Everyone’s Druidic path is unique to themselves and therefore every Druid has a different experience and perception of what their own Druidic path is and where it is taking them, therefore the only way I can answer the question is to say what Druidry is to me personally. Do I believe in Druidry as a faith? Yes. Do I believe in the numerous Gods and deities associated with the Druidic path? Yes, but my perception and understanding of them probably requires an explanation. I believe in a supreme creator of all things that has sentience in nature. By that I don’t just mean the nature that forms our existence but as creating everything, from the furthest galaxy to the tree outside my window. I believe that this sentience is the supreme Godhead and maintains the existence of everything, including ourselves. I see the other God figures associated with our faith as being perceptions of the different characteristics of the God that is nature. I think these are important for our attempted understanding of God/Nature as I think that anyone who claims to understand the character of a supreme God (as perceived by any faith) simply by referring to it in the singular either has the most marvellous understanding of what a supreme God is, or is sadly deluded. This is understood by other faiths too. In the New Testament there are at least twenty eight different names for Jesus, from ‘the Lamb’ to ‘the Alpha and Omega’, each representing a different characteristic of the Godhead. To my Druidic path this is vital to gain a foothold of understanding the Godhead of God/Nature.

Now to the Philosophy. It makes me inwardly cringe when I hear people talking about striving to be ‘at one’ with nature. These people have surely missed the point. By trying to be ‘at one’ with nature you are subconsciously building a wall between yourself and nature, an ‘us and them’ philosophy that negates the very thing you are striving for. I like to picture the rest of nature as a glass flat pond and myself as a pebble cast into the water. My intention is to make a small a ripple as possible. I see mankind’s destruction of the natural world as others unthinkingly casting stones into the pond and not caring how much of a disruptive splash they make. As a Druid I strive to feel nature without having to touch. When you experience this you begin to get an understanding of the very sentience we worship in our rituals, an understanding without need for words.

To sum up then, what is a Druid? My perception is the only one it can be. It’s me. If you are following a Druidic path then your answer is simple too. It’s you.

I gently caress the air, with the limbs of a thousand trees,

I hurl the force of storms that brings nations to their knees.

I’m calm and serene, unforgiving and cruel I create wonders you can’t comprehend,

I’m nature, your God, the reason for life, I’m the only one left at the end

 Dennis Andy Andrew

A.O.D.

THE ANCIENT ORDER OF DRUIDS

It was not until the 17th century that the teachings of the Druids were adopted to modern usage when a ritual based upon their moral and fraternal philosophy resulted in a Grove (Lodge) being organized in London, England, in 1781. Since that time modern Druidism has had continued existence all over the world.  In 1786, a gentleman named Henry Hurle at a meeting in London, England, seeing the necessity of a harmonious Brotherhood of man, announced: "It appears to be that society lacks good fellowship, hilarity and brotherly love." He also spoke of the Druids and said "they were of old men who undertook to enlighten the people of their day and who introduced among the ancient Britons the useful and polite arts, and these were the Druids. My proposition is that we form a society for social feeling and we assume the title of those learned men (The Druids), and that we will adopt the endearing name of brothers, universally amongst us." The wish and the intention of those men was to enlighten the mind, promote harmony, encourage, temperance, energy, and virtue.

Hurle and other gentlemen of the same frame of mind used to gather at a tavern in Poland Street, off Oxford Street, called the King’s Arms. Often they could be interrupted by unwelcome visitors, which lead the group to hire a room from the host of the tavern where they could discuss matters in peace and quiet as befitted their demeanour. It was at this establishment a Grove was opened by Hurle and his friends. Thus modern Druidism was born. This Kings Arms tavern still stands, and bears a plaque recording that A.O.D was revived there in 1781.

The success of the group that met at the King’s Arms, which came to be called Lodge No. 1, spawned the creation of a number of other lodges of the Order being founded elsewhere by new initiates. By 1785, the AOD had six lodges in London, with another located in Ipswich and by 1791 there was a string of them across southern England.

In 1794, with the French Revolution causing a panic amongst many in the British government, who feared a revolutionary movement at home, great suspicion was cast upon secretive societies, and due to this a number of the lodges shut down, including that in Westminster. Nonetheless, by the start of the nineteenth century, twenty-two lodges remained open. By 1831 this had risen to 193 lodges, and the Order’s membership itself had risen to over 200,000.

However, discontent was rising in the Order. Ever since its inception, its members had come from a variety of different social backgrounds, and many of the poorer members, particularly in the newly industrial towns in the English Midlands, wanted it to act more like the benefit clubs and friendly societies such as the Oddfellows, Foresters and the Shepherds which were then rising in popularity. These benefit clubs collected together membership fees into a central fund which would then be used to care for any members who for whatever reason became too ill to work, or to pay for their funerals in the event of their deaths. In particular, these dissenting voices wanted to cease sending a percentage of their funds to the Grand Lodge, formerly Lodge No. 1, and to introduce more democratic reforms within the movement, so that the Archdruid of each lodge would have a larger say over the movement.

In the early years of the 1830s, a group of lodges decided to found an elected United Provisional Committee, but in retaliation the Grand Lodge and its allies expelled them from the Order, further galvanising the organisation into two camps. In 1833, about half of the AOD, numbering over a hundred lodges, split from the Grand Lodge in protest, and formed the United Ancient Order of Druids. This event has subsequently become known as "the Great Secession" amongst members of the Order.

Probably Hurles Order was not the first of the Druid movements. However, it was certainly the most affluent. It also appeared to have a lot more influence than many of the other splinter sections. It was through the A.O.D. that attempts were first made to unify the various Orders, its membership and finances. Between the World Wars the Ancient Order of Druids, the Order of Druids and the United Order of Druids deemed themselves as sister organisations, with mutual membership and held annual Congress’s which brought together members of the three main Druid Orders. The Druids still operate as a Mutual Friendly Society.

 

 

Energy in Circle

By Rachel Patterson

www.kitchenwitchhearth.com

 

We all work with energy in a lot of ways, whether you are working a candle spell or sending healing for instance, we also work with energy within a ritual.

 

That energy can be positive but it can also be negative.  If someone within the ritual has had a bad day, is feeling unwell, angry or is worried about something they can unintentionally send out negative energy.  And that energy can affect everyone else.

 

Whilst we make every effort to cleanse and purify the circle and those in it, as a precaution we recommend coming into ritual with a personal shield, not only to protect yourself from any stray negative energy but also to protect others in case you inadvertently send it out.

 

A shield is a 'bubble' of protective energy you can surround yourself with as a defence. It is essentially your aura, but you turn it into a protective shield that keeps physical and mental harm from you.

 

A protective shield:

 

Calm your mind and focus…

 

Become aware of your aura, the field of energy that surrounds your body, visualise it as a bubble surrounding your whole body.

 

Visualise the outer 'skin' of your bubble becoming a reflective surface, you can see out and send energy out but nothing harmful can come back through. Hold the intent of protection in your mind.

 

Hold the image of your shield getting stronger until you feel safe enough. Then allow the image to dissipate.

 

Once you have this shield practiced you can call upon it at any time, even if you are perhaps out shopping and it is busy and you feel vulnerable, just visualise your aura forming into a protective, reflective shield.

 

I choose a reflective surface and am mindful that only negative energies cannot penetrate it, allowing the positive energy to still come through. I would suggest not visualising a shield made up of something such as bricks, because this would cut you off from all energies, and would make you too shut off, we do want to have some feelings!

Paganalia

Robes, Cloaks medieval Dresses

   Admin of the Dorset Grove

                          

                                                                       Wildfox

 ArchDruid

and knight Templar

with Glenn my Godson

      

                       

Hannie & Jusin's Handfasting at the Earthhouse Cranbourne

with Dennis, Fiona, Justin, Hannie, Wildfox and Rita

 

 

Dennis Andrew

Knight Templar

Making contact with the Ancestors and talking to people who have moved on beyond

This world

The Groves Press officer

Information and Teaching

  Rita

Keeper of the Sacred Wardrobe

     The Groves Seamstress

Herbs that relate to the turning Wheel of the Year

Amani

Mistress of the Sacred Loom

     The Groves Seamstress and Spinner of the Magical Yarn

 

 

 

                                          

                                         

 

Shane Odem

Honorary

member of the Dorset Grove. He also the Abbot of the grove and our contact with the USA

 

Thunder/Suzanne

Honorary member of the Dorset Grove.

she is our contact in

Australia

 

she is now the Medicine Woman of the Grove

 

Phil is now the Guardian of the Grove

and the Gate Keeper

Tony

Keeper and Guardian

of the Trees

Paul

Meditation

Angie is now the Groves Bard

:Bard:

Typically masters of one or many forms of artistry, bards possess an uncanny ability to know more than they should and use what they learn to keep themselves and their allies ever one step ahead of danger. Bards are quick-witted and captivating, and their skills might lead them down many paths, be they gamblers or jacks-of-all-trades, scholars or performers, leaders or scoundrels, or even all of the above. For bards, every day brings its own opportunities, adventures, and challenges, and only by bucking the odds, knowing the most, and being the best might they claim the treasures of each.

 

 

 

 

Mystic Ron

The all knowing all seeing.

Shaman Glenn

And the lovely Julie  

Liz

Mistress and Guardian of the Dark side

Sue

Animal Magic relating to the time of the year

 

The Dorset Grove Cloak Patch

Are now available to members at £6 each

we now have our own clothing,

click on this link

 

 

Wildfox

Stanton Drew

Samhain 2010

Spring Equinox 2011

Portland

Wildfox and Dave at the Wessex Gathering

2011

 

  Summer Solstice Stonehenge June 25th 2011

 

                  

Come and Talk with us and keep up to date with whats on and happening in our area

Email.

Wildfox. iantmp190@gamil.com

 

Pictures of the Dorset Grove Alban Eilir ritual are now up on the gallery page

You can join Wildfox on Facebook

May peace be with everyone

Sunrise Stonehenge Equonox Autumn 2009

What being a druid means to me.

by Stewart, bakerbard

To me being a druid is acknowledging that the devine is in everything.

To be a Druid is to see the land as sacred and to care for it.

To be a Druid  is to honour our ancestors both recent and past.

To be a Druid is to live with resoect for my fellow journyers in this life regardless of race and creed.

But what is a Druid? Put in simplest turms a Druid is someone who follows a nature based spirituality that they believe pre dates Christianity in these Isles, not that we are doing the same as our ancestors did as truth to be told we have no real idea of what they did. But there are inklings and we try to interpret those inklins into a vibrant belief for today. My druidism is a pagan one and so I honour the old Gods and Goddesses, and my spirtual practise follows the change of the seaasons, what we call the turning of the year. Of course there is more to it than this but this will give you a basic introduction to what I believe.

 

How Druids see the world

Everything is connected.

One of the core values of Druidism is that everything is connected there is no separation. Humanity in its so called wisdom believes that it is the pinnacle of creation; this of course leads to so many problems.

Wars that pit nation against nation. Disregard for the world that sustains us, leading to environmental melt down.

The idea that we are somehow divorced from the rest of creation is of course a fallacy, and one we need as Pagans to admit to. Part of the problem is that we do not see past the superficial and really look at the world.

When we look at the world with our spiritual eyes we see that everything is connected and interconnected. The Native Americans talk of the stone people, the animal people, the tree and plant people, and of course the people, people.

As a Druid I see it as my duty to reconnect to these realms of nature as I am made of the same energy they are. The same atoms that flow through the trees of a forest are the same atoms that flow through me. “We are stardust, we are golden” as the song from the musical Hair so eloquently says.

In the rest of this article I am going to dwell on the relationship we have as Druids with trees. Why does the Druid have this relationship with trees? Why do people who hardly know anything of what a Druid is or does know this one fact that Druids love trees?

Most modern scholars agree that the word Druid is derived from the words Oak and wise with a meaning of one who has the “Wisdom of the Oak.” So without doubt the Druids of old were associated with trees.

What of today? I feel that it is most important for today’s Druid to care for and love trees, as they are our lifeblood, and if we lose them we lose so many things not only in the physical realm but also in the spiritual.

Trees are the storehouse of the Suns energy, they stand upon the earth their roots going deep into the Goddesses body. The leaves of a tree absorb carbon monoxide, and give out oxygen, they are literally the earths lungs. We use trees in countless other ways as well for our houses, books (and how Pagans love their books) for heating when it is cold and many other ways.

Consider this though; the oldest tree in the UK is a Yew tree estimated to be roughly three thousand years old just imagine what this ancient being has seen and has then stored the information in its rings of growth. Each time of drought, famine and fire is recorded by the tree.

It is not just the physical benefits of trees that the Druid celebrates though; we also venerate trees for their spiritual qualities as well. As Druids we believe that we can enter into a relationship with trees, but this takes time and commitment. Trees are old beings and do not live in the same timescale as we do., so whenever you try to form a relationship with a tree it must be on their terms and timescale.

I will end this with another exercise (in fact I will try to do this with all my posts)

Go for a walk in a forest or park where there are many different types of trees, walk slowly and thoughtfully. Does one particular tree call to you? If so sit with it, slow your breathing and send your thoughts to the tree. With perseverance I believe that you will be able to form a relationship with trees.

Trees Dance.

Trees dance you know.

It's true, they do.

They are just shy.

So they dance

By moonlight when

Nobody watches.

Oaks performing

A stately Gavotte.

Silver Birches a ballet

To the sounds of the night.

Saplings of course disco

Forgive them they are young.

You look at me as if I am mad.

But trees dance you know.

It's true, they do.

Pangur-ban 3/2/2010

 

 

An Anthem for Druids

WE WANT TO LIVE

 

We want to live in a world that survives

On the planet of life with light in our lives

By the power of the moon and the strength of the sun

We are one on the Earth

We want a world where there is love for everybody

We want a world where there is no more war….

We want a world where there is hope for everybody

We want a world thats better than before

Give us a world where there is food for everybody

Water is pure; the air is fresh and clean

We want a world that is good for everybody

We want a world where everyone is free

 

We want a world (oh, say can you see…)

We want a world (there’s a change in the wind)

We want a world (so proudly we hail)

We want a world (the new age, is dawning….)

 We want a world where there is peace for everybody

We want a world where there is no more war

We want a world where there is truth for everybody

We want a world that better than before

 We need a world where there is food for everybody

Flowers that bloom with trees green and tall.

We want a world that is good for everybody

We want a world with joy and peace for all

We want a world (The time has now come…)

We want a world (to heal….)

We want a world (the wounds of the world)

We want a world (Earth Mother is calling….)

 We want a world that is good for everybody

We want a world where there is no more war

We want a world with food for everybody

We want a world thats better than before….

 We want to live in a world that survives

On the planet of life with light in our eyes

By the power of the moon and the strength of the sun

We are one on the Earth…

We want to live in a world that survives

With love in our hearts and light in our eyes

So our children can sing when all battles are done

We are one on the earth…….

 

 

 

 

 

 

Every thought is a whispered prayer.