Learn the Ogham, the Mystical Energies of the Trees.
Walk the Ogham Pathways with the Druid Forest School
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On our weekly two days off, Maggie and I love going to the many ancient Woods near our Healing Centre and airbnb in the far West of Ireland. where we now live: http://www.foxfordairbnb.com/
I thought I might set out my understanding on a number of points that students write in about.
Firstly, the Ogham medieval manuscripts are our only written source of Ogham understanding. But they codify oral tradition that is very much older. The Ogham letters had a quite number of sets of different correspondences traditionally, but its correspondences to trees were the most important, and the trees are the ones I work with because I love the energy and wisdom of the trees.
The main source of Ogham lore is the Book of Ballymote.
By weird coincidence, Ballymote is a town very near where I live in Co Mayo, Ireland.
The Ogham pathways are envisioned as running across and between the three planes of existence for the ancient Irish: This world (Bith, the upper world and the lower world.
Each of these three planes are envisioned as having four Otherworlds, and the pathways run acrosss and between those otherworlds.
The Ogham tree names have come down to us in Old Irish and Middle Irish, so they are indeed the words of another language. They are pretty different from modern Irish which is sometimes called Gaelic. Languages change a lot over time. Irish is part of the Indo-European group of languages that spread across Eurpope, Asia Minor and North India, The languages all developed out of the one common source called proto-IndoEuropean, and as the indoEuropean peoples invaded outwards away from their original homeland in South Russia, the languages split off from one another and then evolved, so there’s a family tree of IndoEuropean languages. But this means there are quite close similarities between Sanskrit of the Vedic Indians and Gaelic, and also to Old Norse.
Another concept from the ancient Irish Druids that I teach is The Duile: our flesh, the Nine Elements of our Body. We work with a system where the human body, which is inhabited by a spiritual being or soul, is considered to be composed of nine dúile or elements. We study the useful layers of correspondences of these elements to the elements of the cosmos and cosmic order, for example: Bones Stone, Body Earth, Mind The Well of Segais. We identify the balance of the elements of fire, stone, water and air in our life and work using Druid magic or Draíocht and cauldrons to heal and empower using methods including shamanic journeying and embodiment/shape-shifting.
And the key point is that the Ogham and the Duile are interrelated in that in the ancient Irish Celtic spirituality, everything is interrelated.
There’s a north American Indian concept of the Web of Life: whatever we do to part of the web we do to the whole of the web.
Both the Irish Druids and the Sanskrit speaking Vedic Indians in North India had a concept of the Cosmic Man or purusha, so in this way our bodies are a mirror of the Cosmos. The Ancient Norse had the same concept. It was from the body of Mimir that Middle earth was formed.
So, All Blessings to you and I look forward to working with you on one of my courses,