Saturday, October 22, 2011

Thoughts on Priestess of the Forest

I finished reading Priestess of the Forest: A Druid Journey earlier this week and I am still thinking about this book.

What I liked about this book: The way it showed how Druid spirituality was a guiding factor in all parts of people's lives-- not just ritual, but day to day activities, healing, hunting and politics as well. I really liked the way Celtic wisdom was intertwined into the story and how the Druids used every day occurrences as teaching moments.

It was also interesting to see how two different monks approached the Druids regarding the Christian faith. One priest shared Christian teachings by telling stories of his God, as the pagans shared stories about theirs. He spread his faith by breaking bread with the pagans, acknowledging their celebrations and being a loving and compassionate neighbor.

The other priest was all hellfire and brimstone. How he made the Christian faith appealing enough to the pagans to convert them is beyond me. He stirred dissension, he lied, was disrespectful of customs and to women...

I'm still questioning how Christianity ever caught on. I can see how it would be appealing to men, but not women. What was so appealing about it? Because there was one god, not many, to believe in, so it seemed so much more simple? Because of the promise of a rich afterlife for everyone, peasant or king, just for having faith? Would it ever have spread so far if it hadn't used fear and force to convert people?

I think it just emphasizes to me that I really am a pagan, because, even though this book is fiction, it is written by a modern Druid, and the Druid wisdom, teachings, rituals and lifestyle the author shares make complete sense to me and are extremely appealing.

I know I've rambled at bit in this post, but basically what I'm trying to convey is that this book really got me thinking again about my path and why it means so much to me.

1 comment:

Dori said...

I think your article is great. I may get this book to read. Thank you for writing about it.