So, You Should Want You Should Start A Grove?

Image - druid grove

1. Introductory meeting (repeat as necessary): “How I came to be here, and where I wish to go.” Begin with song, “Avalon is Risen.” (offlist)

2. Ethics vs. morals: If you don’t believe in a judging deity, or heaven and hell, what makes you be an ethical person? Issues of freedom and responsibility.

3. Ethics of Spell casting: Love spells; weather working; protection, etc.. Manipulative magic?

4. Bardic Circle: Everyone bring songs and/or poetry to share in turn.

5. Pagan parenting: Bringing up our kids to make a free and informed choice of religion; fun and seasonal activities; children blowing our covers; cowan relatives and co-parents. How can we pass on our values? The ethics and politics of teaching children, especially kids of non Pagans.

6. Reincarnation: Types of reincarnation from different cultures; transmigration to different species; the ecological view of “material animism.” Soul survival: intact, fragmented, or no personal soul at all. Ethnic identities. Experiences with the dying and the dead.

7. New mythologies: Science fiction & fantasy. Movies, comics, music, art.

8. Building Pagan communities: Urban? Rural? How to maximize the feeling of community and individual choice in lifestyle? Business, living arrangements, aesthetics.

9. Paganism & Druidism: In and out of the closet. Handling spirituality at work and with relatives. Sharing experiences.

10. Sacrifice & the seasonal round: Is the continual reenactment of the yearly sacrifice a viable mythic model for us? What mythological alternatives might we consider? How about seasonal celebrations in differing climatic zones, or different hemispheres?

11. Sexual polarities: The metaphysics of sex and heterosexism. What would gay or straight or bisexual magic be like? Do the different rhythms of the year call for different sexualities? Theories of love and magnetism, erotic and mystic ecstasy, eternal love. Sexuality, polarity, androgyny.

12. Sexuality & Relationships: Open relationships; monogamy vs. polyamory. Different models; polyfidelity. Dealing with jealousy. Rules for inclusive relationships.

13. Living a nature religion in an urban/technological world: Gremlins and machines; recycling; deep ecology; seasonal awareness in an urbanized setting; worshipping the moon through glass!

14. Magic & money: Our relationship to having and to generosity. How we relate to prosperity and how we manifest it.

15. Druids & community responsibility: The burnout cycle and group motivation. Resistance to our visions; how to change the world if we can’t get ourselves moving? Varieties of Pagan experience, from itinerant partier to persons motivated by strong political or ethical principles.

16. Druidism & politics: Druish response to anti-choice lobby, anti-Satanic hysteria, environmentalism, etc. Preparing position statements, letter-writing campaigns, petitions, etc.

17. Skills exchange on a variety of topics: Massage, Tarot, geomancy, dowsing, astrology, divination, Reiki, etc.

18. Song & chant swap: Bring tape recorders and CDs!

19. Shamanic trance techniques.

20. Videos: Rent a video that has a Pagan theme. Discussion follows.

21. Myths: Relationship of myth to reality.

22. Purpose of existence: Who are we? Where are we going? How will we get there? Personal salvation/ enlightenment vs. larger mission…

23. Practicing magickal techniques: Sensing auras, using pendulums, dowsing, etc. Survey of divination methods.

24. Guest lecturers: Invite presentations from individual group members or outside sources.

25. Book study & discussion: Select a book from the Basic Bibliography or other; everybody read it and discuss at next meeting.

26. Comparative religions: Invite representatives from different religions to present their views to Grove; then have the Grove attend their next services.

27. Special events: Sponsoring and participating in public events; debriefings from distant journeys to attend Pagan Festivals, magical mystery tours, etc…

28. Group outings: Picnics, camp outs, dinners, movies. trips to sacred sites, such as hot springs, the ocean, mountains, caves, etc.

29. Lunar magick: Full Moon and/or New Moon rituals.

30. Mystery Circles: Men’s and Women’s mysteries taught and celebrated.

31. Pirate Parties: Or other special theme costume parties.

Remember to pass around Sign-Up sheet for new people. Decide next meetings: dates, places and topics. Potluck dinner or munchies? Prepare a calendar of events. Arrange to contact absent members by phone or letter.