Blog of the Month
Each month we feature a post from a blog of interest to Druids. For January, it is a recent entry from Caroline William's blog, The Druid Path, on her Druid Therapy website.
“If the only prayer you said was 'thank you,' that would be enough.” ― Meister Eckhart
Gratitude is a word we are familiar with and there are endless quotes, like the one above, which declare the virtues and benefits of living with gratitude. There are even numerous psychological studies which can now empirically support the age old claims that gratitude is a core part of human contentment and joy.
You can pray with gratitude, write a gratitude journal, do a 100 days of gratitude on face book and no end of feel good ways to bring more gratitude into your life. But there is another aspect of gratitude which is often underplayed and that is gratitude within spiritual and ritual practice.
"What? I do that in my ritual/spiritual practice! I thank the trees, God/dess the guides, the earth, the..." I hear you cry out. If you haven't cried that out then maybe create a place for these gratitudes in your spiritual work before reading on.
I'm talking about gratitude as a path towards a deep magical space, gratitude as a door way into that sweet subtle liminal space which is neither of the mundane or spirit world.
That place, time and experience of dusk or dawn when the air begins to change, bird song shifts and the very light around you takes on an otherworldly hue. There is a sense of waiting, an expectation that the spirits are moving around us and within us.
It is the steps just before entering a thick forest as you see the path ahead meander and slowly slide out of sight under the voluminous blanket of trees.
The sounds change and the temperature cools as the loamy scent of the earth tempts you into the dark green cloak of the forest. This is the liminal space and it’s truly magical.
Gratitude within these times and places can further open the doorway to deeper connection, it's as if the words of thanks, of humility, of wonder crack open the cage door of our souls so we can truly understand and connect to the mysteries of life. At these times in these spaces I wonder if gratitude is not so much about "thanking" but a symbolic word, a key to unlock our souls so we can fly free in the liminal space, connecting, sharing and being transformed by the very life force Nwyfre (The Druidic concept of the 'life force' has been embodied in the word 'Nwyfre.' The word Nwyfre is a Middle Welsh word meaning 'sky' or 'vigor'.)
Don't take my word for this though. Go out there and try it yourself and be open to the mysteries that lie ahead.
Explore the significance of the Druid seasonal celebrations
Explore the practice of meditation in Druidry and listen to sample meditations
Explore the significance of sacred animals in the Druid tradition