ADF Structure, Customs, and Policy; Requirement 1
Explain why public, inclusive ritual is important to ADF. (200 words min.)¹
There have been several good reasons given for this in many essays written by our membership. Ian Corrigan wrote:
"In the Druidic tradition the obligation to perform public ritual has always been strong. The ancient druids were the administrators of ceremony and acted as sacrificers, diviners and counselors for their folk. We hope to follow their example, and our work centers around modern public Paganism."
- Magical Skills in Druidic Ritual
In the first edition of the Grove Organizer's Handbook, there was an essay entitled the "Good Neighbor Policy". When I became a Grove Organizer, I was asked about this policy. I feel it cuts directly to the reasons public ritual is so important to ADF. A lot of what we're asked to do as Groves in that essay involves getting to know those around us to become more accepted and more mainstream. It's somewhat cautious, but it really is about being public and (as a result) being accepted. In many ways, ADF sees itself as being there for the folk, and bringing Paganism out of the shadows and into the light of mainstream society, feeling that this benefits both us and the rest of the world.
We're looking to show people that we are an active, spiritual tradition. We also want to bring consistent, accessible ritual to areas that lack it. Quite often, an ADF Grove will be the only Pagan group in town that provides open, public worship, and many people need that.
Finally, we really need to look no further than the ADF Constitution for the reason:
2) Since one of the primary duties of the ancient Druids was to lead their tribes in magical and religious activities, ADF advocates and practices, as an integral part of our faith, open, inclusionary, and public ceremonies to worship the Earth Mother and the Old Gods and Goddesses, rites of passage to mark the cycles of our lives, and magical rituals to accomplish our other goals in an honest and ethical manner.
¹ - This article is a revised version of part of a FAQ I wrote for the 2005 GOH.
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