“And in knowledge, the knowledge of justice. And in the knowledge of justice, the love of it.” – The Druid’s Prayer.
Each Druid ritual begins with the call for peace – an intention that there may be peace in the north, the south, the east, the west: peace throughout the whole world. The Druid’s Prayer, which I recite daily, calls on the love of justice.
The path of the Druid is one of peace and of justice.
Internet trolls may disparage “Social Justice Warriors”, but the Awen definitely calls us all to be Social Justice Druids.
The Druid’s prayer is clear: written by Iolo Morganwg, a radical reformer well aware of the social implications of Druidry, is a clarion call for Druids to engage with society and to stand for and work for social justice.
Druidry is not a spirituality of escapism, it is a roll up your sleeves and get stuck in spirituality, a path of practical engagement with the real world, and with real world concerns. The Druid speaks for the trees, but the Druid also speaks for those who have no voice, or whose voices are silenced.
Druids are called to take a stand, to hold dear the values of peace, of justice, of truth, and to work to make those values real, to manifest those ideals in the real world – what is that but the work of magic?
Druids are only “True Neutral” in Dungeons and Dragons. Here, in the real world with real problems of climate crisis, deforestation, displacement of indigenous people, war, hatred, racism, fascism, homophobia, transphobia and more, we don’t have the luxury of neutrality.
In our thoughts, in our words and most importantly in our actions, Druids must embody peace and justice. Bran the Blessed in the Mabinogi said “let he who would be leader be a bridge”. Druids can be bridges: between communities, between humans and nature, between the past and the future.
I left the Catholic faith behind a long time ago, but the Prayer of St Francis still speaks to me:
“Make me a channel of your peace.
Where there is hatred, let me sow love
Where there is injury, pardon
Where there is doubt, faith
Where there is despair, hope
Where there is darkness, light
And where there is sadness, joy.”
This could have been written by a Druid.
May we all be channels of peace and justice in our world today.
[Prompt from Alison Leigh Lilly’s 30 Days of Druidry]