Nature as Living Story: Lectio Divina in the Natural World » Aontacht Magazine

I’m a few days late with this announcement, but… exciting news everyone! The equinox issue of Aontacht Magazine is out, and it’s available free on the Druidic Dawn website.

This issue focuses on sacred spaces and sacred places, exploring this theme from a variety of perspectives. In his opening letter “From the desk…” Aontacht editor Renard shares a call to action with readers:

To every druid who loves the earth. To all my fellow pagans and every person who walks an earth based spiritual path — I ask each and every one of you — hear the Call of Awakening and make a commitment to visit some of our important sacred sites this year.

Make a commitment to also visit some of the lesser known sites that have been abandoned and seek out ways to reach, restore and activate them.

In the spirit of connecting to those lesser known and often overlooked spaces, my Wild Earth feature article revisits the practice of Lectio Divina as an opportunity to connect to the story of place in the natural world around us, engaging more deeply with its beings and spirits through observation, meditation, prayer and silent contemplation:

Celtic spirituality presents a unique challenge to the practitioner of Lectio Divina: the ancient Druids, priests of our Celtic ancestors, did not write down their holy texts but preserved them instead as an oral tradition passed on through the generations. What little of this sacred oral tradition that we’ve managed to preserve until today comes largely from tales and legends written down by monks, with glosses and layers of Christian interpretation overlaying the original myths. Of these we often have to rely on translations and reinterpretations in order to render relatively obscure myths a little more accessible to the modern reader. Lectio Divina can be a fruitful practice for engaging with these ancient Celtic stories and uncovering their personal relevance and power, but there will always be limits on how deeply we can delve into these texts passed down disjointed over a millennium or more of broken tradition.

Luckily, there is another approach we can take that will connect us with our Celtic ancestors through our love of the natural world, an essential aspect of Celtic spirituality both then and now. When we see nature itself as a constantly-unfolding story about the deepest, most sacred truths of life and death, we can adapt the practice of Lectio Divina as a creative approach to meditation that can strengthen our relationship with the earth.

You can read the full article in the newest issue of Aontacht Magazine, available free on the Druidic Dawn website. (You can also download a high quality .pdf version of the magazine here.)

The theme for the next issue of Aontacht Magazine is: Healing, and submissions are due by May 15, 2012. Check out the submission guidelines for how to share your work — or drop me a line!

Alison Leigh Lilly
Alison Leigh Lilly nurtures the earth-rooted, sea-soaked, mist-and-mystic spiritual heritage of her Celtic ancestors, exploring themes of peace, poesis and wilderness through essays, articles, poetry and podcasting. You can learn more about her work here.

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