So, what is Zen?
Zen is living your meditation, being fully awake and aware. Bodhidharma (528 A.D.) said: “Not dependent on the written word, transmission apart from the scriptures; directly pointing at one’s heart, seeing one’s nature, becoming Buddha”. It is not about sitting on a cushion all day meditating – it is about awareness of everything, and bringing that awareness into every aspect of our lives, seeing our own nature.
Zen is often likened to a philosophy or an attitude rather than a belief. It doesn’t require a belief in anything, not even Buddha. It is about relationship, and understanding our relationship with everything around us – we are not entities alone in this world. We are individuals, but we are also a collective of individuals. Zen is about experiencing, fully. It refuses to be distracted by the illusions of the constructed world around us, from the prisons we create in our own minds to the material consumerism we see running rampant around us. Zen means not only going with the flow of the world around us, but being the flow itself. It is about the true joy of life itself.
So, what is Druidry?
Druidry was the spiritual tradition of the natives of Britain and Ireland and parts of Europe. An ancient pagan tradition, it was a relationship between people and the land which is maintained in modern Druidry, with a focus towards more individualised relationships with the natural world. Druidry today includes relationships with the ancestors and a cultural heritage, as well as encompassing many other worldviews.
Druidry, like Zen, is often likened to a philosophy – it is indeed a way of life, that does not require a belief in any external deity or concept. Druidry seeks to strengthen our bonds of relationship with the natural world, gaining inspiration and wisdom from studying the patterns that nature constantly unfolds before us. At its very core, Druidry holds a reverence for nature. It is about attuning to the cycles of nature around us that we often find ourselves distanced from in this modern world, and finding the wisdom of the oak.
So, what is Zen Druidry?
Zen Druidry encompasses both teachings from Zen and Druidry to combine into a spirituality that is infused with an awareness of the natural world around us. Both Zen and Druidry are all about relationship, and how we fit into the world around us. Through meditation and concepts such as non-attachment to thoughts and experiences coupled with high levels of concentration, Zen Druidry allows us to see the world for what it really is, and in doing so, to honour it and hold a deep reverence for nature in her all glory.