Never stop learning. That should not only be a Druid mantra, but one for the entire human species!
I’ve taken this year off to really dive deep into new studies, experiences and finding a very deep Druidry within my soul. So far it’s been exceptional – I have learned so many things about myself, about how my brain and body works, how I interact with others and how I take inspiration from the natural world around me.
I’ve always been an avid student of life. I’ve always loved being a student – whether it was elementary or high school, college or university. I’ve always had a hunger to learn more about the way life works, about philosophy, history, biology and ecology. That enthusiasm has never faded, and I should hope with all my heart it never does.
Too often we can become complacent in our lives, thinking that we know all that we need to know for however long a time until the awen hits us in the face and we wake up, wanting to quest deeper, to learn more, to snack on those little hazelnuts of wisdom like the salmon in the sacred well. For a while I was content that I had learned enough about Druidry, about Paganism – I now see how foolishly wrong I was. There is always something more to learn, something new to experience. When we stop learning, we stop growing, both mentally and spiritually. We have such capacity within our brains to ever expand our horizons, but the safe and comfortable instinct can easily override that desire to broaden the boundaries.
At this point in my life, when I will be turning 40 this August, I realise just how little I know about anything. I also know that I will never know everything about anything at all. What I do know is that I will never stop learning, never stop freeing my mind so that my ass will follow. It always leads to wondrous new places filled with the wisdom that can only be gained by combining experience with learning.
I am devouring books and exploring the Celtic heritage of the land where I live, in East Anglia, UK. Often overshadowed in my particular region by the Saxon ship burial and village kingdom near Sutton Hoo, historically there isn’t all that much available about the Celtic Trinovantes that lived in my area (the much more popular Iceni tend to overshadow them). I’m learning more about their stories, from academic research to spending hours listening to the land and the stories gleaned from the wind.
I’ve also spent the winter really looking at my self, the reasons why I have done things in the past, my motives and intentions for the future. It has been a real eye-opening experience, visiting all those dark and light places in the soul, seeing what works in harmony and what doesn’t. Exploring the nature of Truth, looking at how I can live the truest expression of my soul, fitting in not only with my true nature but the entirety of the natural world around me. Re-reading Graeme K Talboys’ Way of the Druid lead to weeks and weeks of reflection on what the nature of Truth is to the Druid – I heartily recommend that book to anyone interested in the Druid path. I’m sure there is a future blog post on it when I have managed to put down all that I have gleaned into words…
Taking time out for your self, for your studies and for your spiritual path can be the best thing you have ever done. It shakes off the comfortable shackles of complacency and breathes pure awen deep into your soul. It awakens you to life, and that is a gift in itself.