I’m working on two ADF Clergy Training Program courses that I promised I’d have done by Tuesday night, so no big article from me this week.
I did take some time to day to get my Easter decorations out. First I went outside into a nasty snowstorm (thank the gods I decided to do my shopping this morning when it was still above freezing) to get a dead branch, which I brought back inside and put in a pot of dirt. I then hung colored eggs (blown, so they were light enough not to snap the smaller branches) and a few carved wooden rabbits on it. I also have some ceramic egg-shaped candy dishes that my grandmother painted (and in retrospect, I’m really wishing I had brought them to the ritual for the Ancestors altar) and a few smaller knick-knacks. The Easter Tree was always a big deal in my house when I grew up, and even at a young age I could see it as the mirror reflection of the Christmas Tree. Instead of a living tree to carry life through the winter, we decorated a dead branch with symbols of life to welcome the spring and the warmth and the new. I suppose if I were an obsessive pagan I’d insist on calling it a “spring tree”, or maybe an “Ostara tree” if I were Wiccan. Then again, even though I’ve gotten into saying “oh my gods” and “Hek” instead of “hell” as my pagan practice has continued, I still can’t say “Yule Tree” without a conscious effort. It’ll always be a Christmas Tree to me. Part of practicing Our Own Druidry is honoring our Ancestors, and that includes honoring the traditions that they handed down to us if they still have any kind of meaning for us, even if they have the wrong name.
Speaking of names, next week I’ll ponder the good and bad of “pagan names”. You think I like them? You don’t know me. >8) Then again, if you think I don’t have anything good to say about them, well maybe you don’t know me as well as you think you do. See you then!
Rev. Rob Henderson
Senior Druid, Shining Lakes Grove, ADF