The Mistletoe Foundation
Aims of the Foundation
One of the principle aims of the Foundation is to rediscover the spiritual relationship between mistletoe and Druidic philosophy. Here we may be able to establish an understanding of the hidden mysteries of our tradition and work with the polarities in order to create a true balance within the human understanding of deity. This is not to affirm the dualism of polarity, but to move beyond the extreme polarisation that is held within the revealed religions, with their bias towards god or goddess, right or wrong, good or evil ... and find the power of true connection. Addressing this in many ways, the Foundation looks at mythology, herb lore, ritual and magic, finding congruence and relevance, securing the place of this sacred plant in the sacred traditions of the present and the future. Allowing personal interaction on a hands-on level, another key aim of the Foundation is to encourage the propagation of mistletoe within our sacred Groves, exploring the botany of this precious plant. This in itself will be no easy task, the plant has a reputation for being extremely difficult to germinate and as the Foundation unfolds this will become part of the learning process.
However, individual modern-day Druids have had some success with this venture, so we know that it is not impossible or indeed implausible. Environmental issues are another prime concern of the Mistletoe Foundation. These concerns involve the protection of habitats that are still able to host mistletoe, and to provide a database that details its distribution and apparent decline in the Midlands and Northern Britain. Obviously, any oak trees that may still sustain mistletoe would be regarded as sacred within a Druidic context and therefore we would endeavour to secure their protection. Sources of Inspiration The Mistletoe Foundation was inspired by the ancient roots of our tradition and, through its work, we shall build a bridge from our illustrious heritage into the twenty first century. In doing so, our journey is one which lays great value on 'walking our talk'. We know from Classical accounts that mistletoe was held to be deeply sacred by the Druids, especially when discovered upon an oak tree. On the sixth day of the new moon closest to the Winter Solstice, it was harvested with great ceremony as an offering to the gods. It would seem that this was a pivotal date within the ancient Druidic calendar, using a natural albeit very unusual parasitic plant species. It is this sacred act, the rite of cutting the mistletoe, which lies at the heart of the Foundation. Perceived as an offering of cosmic male fertility to the goddess of the land, of the sacred womb of creation, the rite is a metaphor expressing the union from which nature emerges. Sacred Connection Mistletoe contains many healing properties including the ability to combat various types of cancer.
Often referred to as All Heal in old texts and folklore, it is believed that we have merely scratched the surface with regard to its medical applications and potential. Concerning its relationship with the human condition, mistletoe has always exuded energies of a very positive nature upon our psyche. From the joy and goodwill of kissing beneath a sprig of mistletoe at the Christmas or Midwinter party, to simply bringing it into the home as an expression of the festive season, we have for thousands of years in continuity looked upon this plant as an inspiration to bring the benevolent side of our human nature to the surface. In its power we see reflected the beauty of nature's rite of union. It teaches us of gentleness and power, connection and joy: we express it in the wonder of that festive kiss which begins a new cycle of the growing year. Just as its physical qualities can heal, so its spiritual quality - its energy - heals too, allowing us to open our soul to the deepest lessons about relationship, inspiration and creativity. Through our reverence for nature, with the language of Druidry, we look then to the mistletoe as a teacher and a guide. Further information about the work of the Foundation from: Stefan Allen (email@example.com) and Emma Restall Orr (firstname.lastname@example.org)