Naoi buadhan - Nine Virtues.
DP Definition: "Good judgment, the ability to perceive people and situations correctly, deliberate about and decide on the correct response.”
Dictionary Definition: "1. The ability to discern or judge what is true, right, or lasting; insight. 2. Common sense; good judgement.
The age-old saying that Intelligence is the knowledge that a tomato is a fruit, but wisdom is knowing that you do not put a tomato in a fruit salad. Wisdom is the ability to acquire knowledge from those around us through listening, understanding and experiencing, as well as the ability to take that information in no matter what form it may come to us in and make it useful for my self and those around me. The ability to read between the lines in any given situation to understand a deeper or even hidden meaning of what is happening. Wisdom is the knowledge that one must at times listen to what’s being said to them rather than speaking. Just simply absorbing the information being presented to them.
DP Definition: "The ability to broaden one's perspective to have a greater understanding of our place/role in the cosmos, relating to the past, present, and future.”
Dictionary Definition: "1a. The faculty of sight; eyesight. 2. Unusual competence in discernment or perception; intelligent foresight."
Being able to anticipate the future is a gift that many feel they have on a mystical level and I respect that. Being able to see what is before us as a society, group and individual is a gift we all have and can obtain with practice and patience though without the help of mystical force. The ability to see beyond the current hurdles our lives put before us is the vision one hopes to gain. Be it vision for the future of a community, or event.
Vision is also, the ability to see the whole picture when it comes to situations. When conflict comes before us we need to be able to see, hear and feel out what is happening and be able to forte the truth from deception.
DP Definition: "Correct observance of ritual and social traditions, the maintenance of the agreements (both personal and societal) we humans have with the Gods and Spirits. Keeping the Old Ways, through ceremony and duty.”
Dictionary Definition: "2. A devout act, thought, or statement" Related: Pious: "1. Having or exhibiting religious reverence; earnestly compliant in the observance of religion; devout."
Connecting with the world around you is a gift that few in our society hold dear. Connecting between Ancestors, Nature Spirits and Shining Ones is a special ability that keeps one grounded here on mother earth and keeps one humble in their day to day activities. Sharing one's piety with fellow grove mates or pagans is a special ability rarely found in today's society.
Piety also includes one's ability to make vows their Kindred as well as their fellow pagans. These are what bind us to our promises and keep us on our path.
Piety, to me, also is the understanding that there are also forces outside of the kindred we worship that need to be understood and respected. There are things in our society that form a good and evil relationship and that that power struggle needs to be respected and understood.
DP Definition: "Cultivating one's appetites so that one is neither a slave to them nor driven to ill health (mental or physical), through excess or deficiency.”
Dictionary Definition: Moderate: "1. Being within reasonable limits; not excessive or extreme. 3a. Of medium or average quality or extent. 4. opposed to radical or extreme views or measures, esp. in politics or religion."
Finding the middle ground in one's life can be ever so difficult. Moderation is not what many assume, personal sacrifice. Moderation is understanding that things will come in time on their own. You can have any or all of the things and experiences but they will come in time, spread out over a period of time and space. Moderation is the understanding that you or a community you work with can only withstand so much at one time.
Moderation, in a sense, is a form of exercising patience with what may be happening around oneself of the community they serve.
DP Definition: "The ability to act appropriately in the face of danger.”
Dictionary Definition: "1. The state or quality of mind or spirit that enables one to face danger, fear, or vicissitudes with self-possession and resolution; bravery."
In everyday situations, we struggle inside of ourselves to face our fears, anxieties, and restrictions we place upon ourselves as well as those placed on us by others. We struggle internally as well as externally on a day to day basis with facing a variety of challenges that we may or may have no control over in any given situation. Courage is that internal power we find deep in our selves to face these challenges head on. It allows us to face our biggest fears from speaking publicly to answering that phone call you may be dreading. It also allows us the power to protect those around us and perhaps speak for them when they cannot. The power of courage is what separates leaders from followers at times. Everyone has in them the ability to be courageous and stand up for what is right. The ones who lead us have nearly mastered this ability.
DP Definition: "Honour; being trustworthy to oneself and to others, involving oath- keeping, honesty, fairness, respect, self-confidence.”
Dictionary Definition: "1. Steadfast adherence to a strict ethical code. 2. The state of being unimpaired; soundness. 3. The quality or condition of being whole or undivided; completeness."
Truth to one's self as well as the kindreds and the communities we serve is integral to one's ability to function on a day-to-day basis without allowing external forces to knock oneself down and allow one to remain focused on their working. The ability to keep one's promise to them self as well as others they have in their life is integral to our work with others, be it kindred or community. It allows those forces to see us and believe in what we say and do. It leaves no doubt in their minds allowing us to complete our work smoothly and without error.
Integrity, is also about maintaining a healthy state for yourself whether it be mind or physical. If one is not true to themselves they are no longer capable of performing their duties and maintaining their vows and they do a disservice to themselves and those around them.
DP Definition: "Acting as both a gracious host and an appreciative guest, involving benevolence, friendliness, humour, and the honouring of "a gift for a gift.”"
Dictionary Definition: "1. Cordial and generous reception of or disposition toward guests."
Hospitality to me is a tool I hope to use the most in my path towards the clergy. Hospitality is the understanding that there are others outside of my self that require levels of comfort and understanding that they may not find in everyday society. Hospitality is the ability to make someone feel welcome no matter the situation. The ability to make a hostile environment a place of comfort and possibly joy.
It is my duty as a member of ADF to make sure those around me and in my community feel comfortable, welcome and accepted in our workings. It is of utmost importance to understand that not everyone is on the same level be it economically or socially as I, the host but I need to be tolerant and understanding of those differences and top treat everyone around me equally.
Hospitality can also has a deeper meaning in a ritual sense. From the tools we use the actions we speak. These things affect our workings and the comfort levels of the Kindred who we welcome into our groves. Understanding that while we as a Druid may call upon Mother Earth and wish for her blessing, one may not be so effective if done with tools akin to someone else suffering.
DP Definition: "Bounty of mind, body and spirit, involving creativity, production of objects, food, works of art, etc., an appreciation of the physical, sensual, nurturing.”
Dictionary Definition: "1. The condition, quality, or degree of being fertile. 2. The birthrate of a population." Related: Fertile: "1. Biology a. Capable of initiating, sustaining, or supporting reproduction. b. Capable of growing and developing; able to mature. 3. Bearing or producing crops or vegetation abundantly; fruitful. 5. Highly or continuously productive; prolific. 6. Physics Capable of producing fissionable material."
From my perspective, one of the most misunderstood virtues has always been Fertility. Most focus on the female form and their ability to create life in a literal sense. Fertility is much much more than that but at the same time is one the same. Ones ability to create and be inspired to create is one's own form of fertility. Not only is it the ability to create though, but the ability to maintain that creation and passion towards it. Creation can be anything from a physical piece of art, a sound of music or even just a concept you push forward into the world. Fertility has no real start and end. It is at all times the flow of inspiration from one's self or a community effort. And with that passion and fertility to greater, you give your creation life.
DP Definition: "Drive; the motivation to pursue goals even when that pursuit becomes difficult.”
Dictionary Definition: "1. Steady persistence in adhering to a course of action, a belief, or a purpose; steadfastness.”
In the sense that courage is one's ability to stand against a threat or a fear we manifest inside ourselves, perseverance is similar in the
sense that sometimes there is no threat or immediate danger. There is no obstacle for you to overcome other than the need to drive oneself forward. The idea is that in some tasks the only one who will motivate you is you. The ability to self-motivate is powerful and often overlooked by most of society. We frequently rely on others to find the courage to move forward. Unfortunately, there are times though that only you can motivate your self to get through a troublesome piece of work. It’s funny to think but of all the virtues listed here, perseverance is the one we use the most to complete a dedicant package.