contemplativeinquiry

This blog is about contemplative inquiry

DRUID CHANTS

Nimue Brown shares a chant that she offered in our Gloucestershire group and talks about chanting more broadly. Her chanting changed the space in the room, as resonant chanting does.

Druid Life

Music has always been a big part of my life, and I’m deeply attracted to the bardic threads in the Druidic weave. I’m also interested in meditation and contemplation. Unshockingly, this has led to time spent chanting. I even run the odd workshop on subverting and messing about with chants to make group singing more collaborative and playful. Let’s face it, there’s only so many times a bunch of people can sing ‘we all come from the goddess’ until it tails off in awkward silence. We are more likely to fall into tedium than reverie, if my experience in circles is anything to go by. I’ve long been interested in finding ways of changing that experience, for myself and for those around me.

I’ve been blessed with some excellent chanting experiences, too – most notably those led by JJ Middleway. His ‘enchanting the void’ sessions offer room for creative exploration…

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CONTEMPLATIVE DRUID RETREATS

Following the publication of ‘Contemplative Druidry’* I have been working on a residential retreat programme.  It is likely that three of us from the Gloucestershire group (discussed in the book) will be offering a pilot next April, sponsored by OBOD (the Order of Bards, Ovates and Druids).  The proposed venue will take up to 20 people, which will allow us to do some real relationship and community building as well as sharing some of our practices. We don’t simply want to roll out a programme. Indeed, we hope to enrich our own work by learning from participants and extending our circle to include them if they wish it.

For me, the only way to strengthen the contemplative thread in Druidry is to build our work in a spirit of open inquiry and sharing, as well as holding a space for tranquillity and renewal through the practices themselves. This is why we are extending the work cautiously. We also hope to offer something at Druid Camp, Lughnasadh 2015, since many of the people in our local group and in the book are involved in The Druid Network. It’s not just an OBOD thing. Samhain this year will be the third anniversary of my commitment to a contemplative inquiry within Druidry. I’m looking forward to what the fourth year may bring.

*Contemplative Druidry is an Amazon CreateSpace and Kindle Direct Publishing venture, involving me in learning a variety of new skills, and is mostly based on interviews with people involved in Druid contemplative practice. It includes a foreword by OBOD’s Philip Carr-Gomm.

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