The Cauldron Born: The Musings of a Welsh Druid

Profundity, profanity and frivolity; the business of serious thinking and joyous expression through the wisdom and traditions of the Celts in the company of Kristoffer Hughes, Head of the Anglesey Druid Order.

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Kristoffer Hughes

Kristoffer Hughes

Kristoffer Hughes is Head of the Anglesey Druid Order in North Wales. He is an award winning author and a frequent speaker and workshop leader throughout the United Kingdom, Europe and the USA. He works professionally for Her Majesty's Coroner. He has studied with the Order of Bards, Ovates and Druids and is its 13th Mount Haemus Scholar. He is a native Welsh speaker, born to a Welsh family in the mountains of Snowdonia. He currently writes for Llewellyn Worldwide specializing in Celtic studies and death and bereavement.

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Mari Lwyd - The Winter Mare.

Midnight. Midnight. Midnight. Hark at the hands of the clock. Now dead men rise in the frost of the stars. And fists on the coffins knock.

Bright Yuletide lights may lull us into a false sense of security that the dying time is over. It is not. As the year took to its deathbed at the Calends of Winter/Halloween the cycle did not restart immediately, oh no, for the season of darkness is long and biting, the descent into the tomb deep and silent. Dying takes time. Fists on the coffins knock.

As the great wheel of the year comes to a standstill, under the harsh bite of winter, the sun stalls in its progression across the skies of dawn, and nature holds its breath. The promise of spring is held within the magic of the Midwinter Solstice, lights shine brightly to warm the dark nights, and revelry and feasting bring families, friends and communities together in the hope that somehow – that warmth, that joy – will push back the edges of darkness. A mere 3 days later Christmas echoes this ancient magic of hope, new birth, promise and life. And yet this promise is still not tangible, we barely sense it, will we survive? Winter will not release its grip willingly. Will we make it through the dark days to come, will we survive the tempest?

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The Chair of Cerridwen

KADEIR KERRITWEN 

The Chair of Cerridwen

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Community Spirit

There was a time that Druids were considered quirky, on the edge, peculiar, just a little quaint and queer, but maybe innocent enough. To some we were considered lunatic fringe, hippies, strange folk in long gowns, whereas in the last few years the perception has swung more from lunatic fringe to maybe just a little fringe. Here in Wales things have changed even more. Druids have long been associated with Wales, and each August the Druids of the Gorsedd of Bards of the Isle of Britain take to their ceremonial function within the National Eisteddfod of Wales. Druids are familiar, we know what they look like, sound like, and we are quite accustomed to them. 


However the cultural Druids of the Gorsedd are different to Pagan Druids, but we do share several things in common - a common birth, from the imagination of the Romantic revivalists, a love of land, a love of language and heritage, a love of creative expression, and the love of Awen. Tell someone in Wales that you are a Druid and the likelihood is the response will be - "Oh so you sing then?". And yet the perception can be quite different just across that invisible line that divides England and Wales. But, Wales' association with Druids has made it easier to be a Druid in Wales, and for the ordinary Welsh person to adapt to the new Pagan Druids that are sweeping the nation. 

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When the Last Leaf Falls - Betty's Funeral

Betty Powell was a Pagan, she made me laugh, well, not just me, she brought colour and spectacle, bewilderment and perplexity, joy and laughter to many a life. 

Betty was a Pagan, and a damned good one at that. But, two weeks ago, Betty turned her face from this world and crossed over to the edge of forever, she was 83 years old.

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Dying Matters

I am not just a Pagan author and Druid, my life has a extraordinary tripartite pattern to it, yes, I am an author, and I am a Druid, but I also work as a member of a Mortuary and Bereavement Services team. In a manner I am an ordinary person who has an extraordinary job. When I say Mortuary, to those in the USA, what I am referring to is a Morgue or a Medical Examiners facility as opposed to a Funeral Home, which you would commonly refer to as a Mortuary. 

This week it is Dying Matters Awareness Week, a 7 day nationwide event facilitated by the National Council for Palliative and End of Life Care and the Dying Matters Coalition. The movement is dedicated to raising awareness about and discussing our wishes and preferences around care and treatment at the end of life. Hospitals, Mortuaries, hospices, community centers and all manners of other venues are hosting events all week to talk about death and dying. 

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  • Malinda Sutherland
    Malinda Sutherland says #
    I am no longer scared of dying as I was in the past. My soul will move onto Summerland. I have decided that my body is to be crema
On Wings of Song - The Many Faces of Rhiannon

On Wings of Song

The many faces of Rhiannon

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  • katherine manaan
    katherine manaan says #
    This was absolutely fascinating and I truly appreciate the scholarship. I'm going to go read the rest of your posts after I digest
  • Byron Ballard
    Byron Ballard says #
    O this is lovely! When you spoke of Rhiannon in one of your talks, you hinted at so much more. This is richly done--thank you.

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The Love of Trees

"The Clearest way into the Universe is through a forest wilderness."

John Muir 1890. 

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