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Sometimes hyphenated as Neo-Druidism, or known as modern Druidry, Neodruidism is a modern spiritual movement characterized by a reverence for the Earth and the environment.

Historically, the Druids were the priests, teachers, and judges of the Ancient Celts. They are believed to have had political as well as religious functions and were among the nobility. They played a part in the election of kings, served as ambassadors, and took part in battles. Their teachings were preserved orally only, and could not be learned without a long period of training in religion, magic, the movements of the stars, and other matters.

References to the Druids in early literature suggest that they engaged in speculations of the end of the world, including a doomsday scenario that would overwhelm both men and gods, with fire and water swallowing up the earth, the sky falling, and humanity perishing, all to make room for a new heaven, a new earth, and a new race of people

The Ancient Druids saw divinity in nature, worshipping the sky, the mountains, the stones, trees, lakes, rivers, the sea, and all of nature, including the animals that inhabited the world. Their gods include some who appeared to be part animal and part human.

The Druids were suppressed in Gaul by the Romans under Tiberius, and in Britain a little later. They lost their priestly functions in Ireland when Christianity became dominant, although they survived for a time as poets, historians, and judges.

Other than legends found in ancient literature, little is known of the first Druids and nothing from original sources. For this reason, although modern Druids often look to the Iron Age Druids for their origins, Neodruidism is actually a modern religion or a group of religions with many characteristics in common.

Today, many of the modern Druid sects are Pagan religions, but the first modern Druids were identified as Christians. Some Christian Druidic groups hold that the ancient Druidic wisdom and traditions were preserved through a distinct brand of Celtic Christianity.

In 18th-century Britain, Druidry was more of a cultural movement than a religious one. In the late 18th-century, modern British Druids created fraternal organizations similar to Freemasonry. In the early 20th-century, some of these groups absorbed the elements of naturism.

Beginning in the 1980s, some modern Druid sects have been making an effort to adopt practices modeled after Celtic Reconstructionists. Their successes are in doubt, largely because everything that is known about the Iron Age Druids comes from archaeological evidence and Greco-Roman literature rather than from anything produced by the Druids themselves. Nevertheless, some modern Druidry groups have incorporated everything that is known or believed about the Iron Age Druids into their practices.

Druidry can be described as a new religious movement, a spiritual movement, a nature religion, and as a form of contemporary Paganism. Some Neodruid sects are heavily influenced by New Age spiritualism, as well as by local indigenous or folk religious traditions, such as Native American or First Nation traditions in North America, or Aboriginal religions in Australia.

At its core, it is Celtic-based, even when practiced in non-Celtic regions of the world, and by people without Celtic ancestry. Some modern Druids identify as Pagan, others as Christian, and some have merged Pagan and Christian traditions in their spiritual practice. There are even Zen Druids and Hasidic Druids. However, in the 20th century, Druidry has been increasingly associated with Neopaganism.

There is no prescribed dogma followed by adherents of all of the Neodruid religions. Common characteristics include a veneration of nature and of ancestors.

Many Druid groups view the Earth and nature as sacred, alive, and dynamic. Because of this, many Druids are involved in environmental activism, and strive to create a way of life that is more natural than that of mainstream society.

Many Druids the ancestors as a shared group rather than as a set of named individuals, the idea being that they are ancestors of the land, rather than ancestors by blood.

Groups of Druids are commonly known as Groves, symbolizing Druidic associations with trees and nature, as well as a reference to the belief that Ancient Druids performed spiritual rituals in groves of trees. Larger organizations of Druids are known as Orders, and their leaders are Chosen Chiefs. Some British orders have three levels of membership: Bards, Ovates, and Druids.

Druidic ceremonies and rituals are designed to align participants with the spirit that is within nature, but the nature of rituals are unique to each grove. Most Druidic rituals are performed outdoors, and in daylight, however. Many Druidic rituals are based on the changing seasons.


Order of Bards, Ovates & Druids



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