Relationship with Divinity

There are people from all religions who have spiritual experiences and feel they have come into contact with their god, goddess, or another spiritual presence they find significant. Generally speaking, being a serious upholder of the given faith is deemed a good way of inviting that kind of experience. So, what is a Druid to do? How do we go about our lives in order to make contact with divinity?

For us, it’s a very different scenario. There’s no book of rules, no straightforward way of demonstrating power of faith or devotion that you can easily tap into. We talk a great deal about having nothing to mediate between us and the divine, but in practice what that also means is that we are entirely on our own.

What are we seeking, when we quest after direct knowledge of deity? Reassurance? Something to take us out of the realms of faith and into knowing and certainty, perhaps. We might seek validation, proof that we are heading the right way, doing the right things. We might just want the ego boost. While all of these things may be natural, they are about us, and not about relationship. If there is any rule at all for Druids in this context, it should probably be, to seek connection for its own sake and not for anything else. Don’t even assume it will mean insight and wisdom. It might just bring chaos, confusion and uncertainty. Are we looking for some clear moment, the booming voice from the Heavans? Or are we actually seeking to know and understand? Religious experience is not like the movies. There is seldom much certainty, but moments of beauty, wonder, awe and numinousness can enrich our lives and give us a sense of having encountered something other. Seek relationship for the beauty of it. That is enough.

The things that shape relationships between humans are just as valid when it comes to thinking about relationship with deity. What do we share? If we understand deity as manifest in nature, then when we are out, interacting with and relating to nature, we are also experiencing relationship with the divine. Watching it on the telly doesn’t count. If we are drawn to more human gods, the named figures of historical pantheons, then we might think about what they represent – and where we are exploring their focus, and the energy they embody, we are making relationship with them, or at the very least with concepts that exist externally to us.

To seek deity in the way I’ve described above, does not call for belief. It doesn’t need validation in the form of something obvious returning to you. It is experiencing sacredness in action, allowing perception to include that element of deity, and being open to that which moves us. It’s spending time with a river and the land, or writing poetry and recognising the sacred within that. As with all other kinds of relationship, the more you share, do and give, the deeper it becomes. No burning bushes actually required.

8 thoughts on “Relationship with Divinity”

  1. One thing I’m wondering deeply for my personal path and am curious to see what others on similar paths think – do you think it’s possible to be a druid (or Druid!), druidical or spiritual without having a relationship with deity?
    Is a belief and relationship with deity seen as essential and how would you consider someone who calls themself a druid (or other faith name) who doesn’t “do deity” (for want of a better phrase?)

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  2. Poppythistle, I know a number of annimist and atheist Druids – folk for whom ‘deity’ isn#t a relevant word, whose sense of the sacred is very much to do with nature, one way or another. So ‘d have to say yes, I think it is. I have a very ambivalent relationship with notions of deity, and how I’d answer for myself varies from day to day, probably following whatever direction the wind is coming from, or something equally random. I’m not very good at belief.

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  3. I definitely struggle with the notion of divinity as I am so brought up in the Western god-with-beard-on-cloud idea, and I cannot relate to that. I do perceive a thread of something totally inexpressible that touches everything – some Quakers have that idea, and it’s also shamanistic in ways.

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    1. Religion is a belief system related to our perception of the divine. I do not believe in religion, Battleknyght.
      However I know that the Divine lives in me, she lives in the air, trees, water, chairs and Jesus.
      I do not believe, I know.

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  4. Hello battleknyght, I think you must have missed the bit where I talked about my ambivalence around belief. I don’t find religion any help whatsoever for explaining fears or insulating me from them, it’s not a comfort blanket, it inspires me to live in certain ways, to do my best, to be all that I can be. I believe that the sun will rise, the rain wll fall, the year will turn. I beleive that we only have one planet and that we have a duty to take care of it. I believe that as a species we can do a lot better than we’re currently doing. And really, you’d have to be insane to go round beleiving things you KNEW weren’t true – I for one, do not actually beleive in the international money markets because I know they are an illusion made out of shared belief, and that they will fall apart as soon as enough people notice.

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