Tuesday, 23 June 2009

Midsummer madness

Every year I see the various new age groups 'celebrating' solstice. In amongst them, there are a number of people calling themselves 'Druids'.

I would like to draw my one readers attention to the following; they aren't real Druids. None of them. They're all fakes. Every last single one. Either unemployed, or frustrated Junior Accountants, or low level Council Workers to a man. Especially those under the age of twenty eight. There is no such thing, or ever was if you adhere to the strict letter of the Lore on these things, as a Druid under that age. Three simple reasons;

First: A would-be Druid must first be a Bard, an acknowledged singer of songs who must be able to rhyme and scan - no blank verse, that's cheating. No girls either. Which is bad news for the feminists because there are no recorded instances of genuine female Bards in Druidic culture. This training traditionally began with boys at the age of fourteen and took seven years entailing a number of sacred rituals like being left to survive the night lying in a swamp (Don't ask why - they just did). At the end of this seven years the would be Bard must prove their ability by singing in front of a council of his peers, all of whom must be either acclaimed Bards or proper Druids, and satisfy them of his ability and suitability for future training.

Secondly: The would-be Druid then has to undergo seven more years of training to learn the folk medicine and sacred rituals, some of which he must undergo himself as a kind of examination. Think of them as kind of high risk mid term exams. There was only one penalty for failure and that is death, usually during the ritual in question but sometimes after as a human sacrifice. Oh, and no sex, although I suspect quite a lot of that generally went on, humanity being what it is.

Soooo.... Fourteen plus seven plus seven equals...... twenty eight.

Ah, and there aren't any real Druids left because the Romans slaughtered them all back in the first and second centuries AD. Mainly because they were a pest and source of resistance against the Roman occupation of Britain. Romano British chronicles of the time tell us that a Roman army cornered and hacked a large contingent into dogmeat back in AD 60. See the contemporary writings of Tacitus, Pliny and Agricola amongst other sources. After that, the last of the Druids were hunted to extinction over the next two decades. Ergo, no more Druids, and no more documented or otherwise sources until a Victorian 'revival' when idle people with nothing better to do dressed up as Saxons, Danes or Celts and made up huge swaths of 'ceremonies' as 'historical recreations'.

Oh, and if these guys are real Druids, how come they get the date wrong; Solstice is the 22nd to 23rd of June, not the 21st or 22nd.

Why would you want to be an adherent to an extinct sect anyway? Is it something to do with exclusivity, like it's my sect and I'll sacrifice if I want to? Poor identification within your family and the search for identity within a peer group? Hated parents, and wants a peer group surrogate but isn't tough enough to join a gang? Maybe they just hate the tyranny of wearing trousers? There are clubs for people like that. Who knows, who cares. I just hate it when people get things wrong and make stuff up to fill in the cracks.

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