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Author Topic: Review: I am Healer, Story Teller, and Warrior Priest: Learning from Arianrhod  (Read 1971 times)

Loona Wynd

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The book I am Healer, Story Teller, and Warrior Priest: Learning from Arianrhod is a short book. This book focuses on the lessons of one specific Goddess within the Celtic pantheons. This book covers many different lessons for personal and spiritual development. The overall concept and goal behind the entire book is to gain a better sense of Self and the relationship to the divine.

The author divided the book up into 4 different sections. Each section of the book had a specific set of lessons in them. The first section of the book is basically an introduction section. Here you are given a starting point for the journey of the book. This is the only section of the book that is made up of one chapter.

The second section of the book is about myths and legends. This section of the book provides two key mythological tales from Celtic lore. The section here then discusses and provides and overview of those two mythic tales and the various lessons in them. Here we learn about some important deities in Celtic spirituality but also learn quite a bit about the relationships between the different divine groups within the Celtic pantheons.

The third section of the book covers the topic of the Goddesses Arianrhod and Bloudeuwedd. Here we get information about their specific characters and their roles in the mythos. We also learn about the symbols of these Goddesses and how they can be worked with spiritually. Section three is also made up of one chapter.

The final section in the book is titled “Manifesting the divine”. This is the section that finally ties in the title of the book to the rest of the book. Here we finally see the roles of the warrior, the healers, the priests, and other ways of manifesting and working with the divine energy explored earlier in this book. Here we get into some practical work and can find spiritual development.

The first chapter in the book covers the concepts of what which has been lost and that which has been found. Here the author introduces the concept of the self as a relation to the divine and the divine energy of the universe. The author touches on Jungian psychology and philosophy. This chapter forms the basic concept of the book which is to gain connection to the divine and the Gods.

The second chapter begins the section on mythology. Here the author starts us off by introducing the first set of myths one should read in regards to Irish paganism. These are the invasion cycles covering the three groups that battled over time for control of Ireland.

The third chapter talks about one of the most famous groups mentioned in the myths of Celtic tribes. This is the group called the Tuatha De Dannan. These are the people known as the fae and fairies to the Christians, while to the Celts these people were there deities and are deities to those who practice modern Celtic spirituality.

Chapter four is called “The ‘Tyranny’ of Bres”. This chapter covers a series of battles and challenges faced by the Tuatha de Dannan as they were ruled by this king. Here we learn of many hardships the Tuatha De Dannan are forced to face and how their teachings are forbidden.

Chapter five gets into some of the symbols that come up in the myths regarding the Tuatha De Dannan. Here the author provides insight as to some deeper meanings and concepts in the myths just read.

In chapter six we are introduced to The Mabinogion. Here the author gives an account of the various books and tales within this collection of Welsh myths. The author while not providing the entire extensive texts provides you with enough understanding to be able to know what the story contains and who the characters are.

Chapter seven discusses the importance of the Mabinogion in today’s world. Here the author discusses the themes and concepts found within the Mabinogion. You are provided with heroes and gods and how their symbolism and their stories are still relevant in the world we live in today.

Chapter eight makes up the entirety of the third section. This chapter focuses on two goddesses from The Mabinogion and their symbolism. We are taught their sides of the story and the symbols in the myths. Here we even learn the meanings behind the use of the flowers that make up the Goddess Blodeuwedd and how that plays into her character.

Chapter nine is where we enter the final section of the book. here the author discusses and goes over the concept of the wounded healer. Here we learn what it means to heal from wounds and what it means to be a true healer. Here we learn that it is ok for us to show our scars from healing ourselves. This shows that we can go on and live with the pain.

Chapter ten starts a discussion on shamanism. Here we learn the authors concept of the shaman soul. We learn about the different aspects of ourselves and how to work them together.

Chapter eleven teaches us some magical and spiritual philosophies involved in manifesting the divine and creating a relationship with the divine. Here the author gets into a few of the concepts found in The Kyballion.

In chapter twelve the author gets into their views on the different bodies that a person has. The concepts here include the emotional body, the physical body, the spiritual body, and the mental body. The author also gets into their relationship to each other and how they work to make us a whole person.

Chapter thirteen teaches us about being a spiritual warrior. Here the author talks about the concepts of what it means to be a warrior and the traits of a warrior. Here the author gets into our responsibilities in the role of a warrior, self discipline, and being honest with oneself.

Chapter fourteen is a Mandala created by the author for Warriors. Its a way of mapping all of the selves. It is a way of showing consequences and actions. This is a “living” document according to the author as it changes and evolves as each individual grows and involves. Its a tool for showing and exploring spiritual and personal growth.

The fifteenth chapter of this book is all about the healer. Healers have always had an important role in religious and spiritual traditions. Here the author gives us a unique healing technique that they created. The author then goes into many other spiritual healing traditions including sweat lodges, Reiki, and affirmative prayer to name a few.

The sixteenth chapter in this book gets into the concept of the storyteller. Here the author explains why we need storytellers today and how they can fill a spiritual void. The author here gets into the spiritual roles as well as the practical roles of the storyteller.

The final and seventeenth chapter in this book covers the concept of the priesthood. The concept of priesthood in pagan and alternative spiritual paths is not always understood today. Here the author gets into the importance of the education that the members of the priesthood have to get in order to best serve their gods. The author talks about how the priesthood has a concept of service and how those who are of the priesthood must provide service of some sort to the community. The author also touches on how it is important to have recognition by others that you are of a service to the community.

The author ends the book by giving some advice on finding balance between all of these concepts. The author continues to explain and expand on the concept that it is up to you to do the work to make the connection and develop yourself spiritually.

Overall this author provides a lot of concepts to consider for developing your spiritual path. The author does well to tie in the concepts to Celtic spirituality specifically as that was the focus of the book yet leaves it open enough for you to find your own paths and relationships. The author does a good job of introducing some of the myths and the lore of Celtic paganism while giving the reader something to read and need to research on their own. This book provides an excellent starting point for Celtic spirituality while giving those on other spiritual paths many things to think about.

Vale

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Quote from: Loona Wynd;141041
The book I am Healer, Story Teller, and Warrior Priest: Learning from Arianrhod is a short book.


 I was interested enough to look at this on the Amazon page and to be honest I do not recognise the Mabinogian from the excerpts. I have several translations of the Welsh classic but I can say I never knew that Arianrhod was the sister of the Morrigan and Ceredwen.

Jack

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Quote from: Vale;141055
I was interested enough to look at this on the Amazon page and to be honest I do not recognise the Mabinogian from the excerpts. I have several translations of the Welsh classic but I can say I never knew that Arianrhod was the sister of the Morrigan and Ceredwen.

 
Ah, yes, the author's website mentions that as well: "She has two sisters, Ceredwin and the Morrigan. In some old religion traditions she is the Mother, while Cerredwin is the crone, and the Morrigan is the maiden." Later on the same page he refers to her as the deity of karma and reincarnation, which is also a new one on me, but then, I'm not a Celtic scholar by any stretch of the imagination.
Hail Mara, Lady of Good Things!
"The only way to cope with something deadly serious is to try to treat it a little lightly." -Madeleine L'Engle

stephyjh

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Quote from: Jack;141056
Ah, yes, the author's website mentions that as well: "She has two sisters, Ceredwin and the Morrigan. In some old religion traditions she is the Mother, while Cerredwin is the crone, and the Morrigan is the maiden." Later on the same page he refers to her as the deity of karma and reincarnation, which is also a new one on me, but then, I'm not a Celtic scholar by any stretch of the imagination.

Never mind that karma is a Hindu/Buddhist concept, and that the maiden/mother/crone model was completely foreign to the Celts. Also that Cerridwen is Welsh, while the Morrigan is Irish.
« Last Edit: February 26, 2014, 07:41:51 pm by stephyjh »
A heretic blast has been blown in the west,
That what is no sense must be nonsense.

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Loona Wynd

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Quote from: Jack;141056
Ah, yes, the author's website mentions that as well: "She has two sisters, Ceredwin and the Morrigan. In some old religion traditions she is the Mother, while Cerredwin is the crone, and the Morrigan is the maiden." Later on the same page he refers to her as the deity of karma and reincarnation, which is also a new one on me, but then, I'm not a Celtic scholar by any stretch of the imagination.

 The author does present it as "Pan Celtic" which basically means trying to make ties between the various celtic groups.  You had Welsh, You had Irish Celtic, and Scottish Celtic.  I'm not a fan of the grouping like that.  But I'm also not a Celtic scholar by any means.  

I have cross checked and the information on the flowers and the creation story of Blodeuwedd.  That information and story did appear to be accurate.

Vale

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Quote from: Loona Wynd;141063


I have cross checked and the information on the flowers and the creation story of Blodeuwedd.  That information and story did appear to be accurate.


It is? I only recall that 3 flowers are mentioned in the tale oak, broom and meadowsweet. Where did the other 6 come from?

The preview also  let me read a bit more initially but I can't find it now - does it really say that Gwydion revived Lleu Llaw Gyffes with a  9 vegetable soup including potatoes?

stephyjh

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Quote from: Vale;141105
It is? I only recall that 3 flowers are mentioned in the tale oak, broom and meadowsweet. Where did the other 6 come from?

The preview also  let me read a bit more initially but I can't find it now - does it really say that Gwydion revived Lleu Llaw Gyffes with a  9 vegetable soup including potatoes?

Since potatoes weren't introduced to Europe until after the colonization of the Western Hemisphere...
A heretic blast has been blown in the west,
That what is no sense must be nonsense.

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Jack

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Quote from: stephyjh;141188
Since potatoes weren't introduced to Europe until after the colonization of the Western Hemisphere...

 
Perhaps the Irish Potato Goddess gave them to him.
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Sulischild

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Quote from: Jack;141213
Perhaps the Irish Potato Goddess gave them to him.

 
You must spread some Reputation around before giving it to Jack again.

dragonfaerie

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Quote from: stephyjh;141188
Since potatoes weren't introduced to Europe until after the colonization of the Western Hemisphere...

 
You'll find potatoes in a lot of "traditional" Irish recipes that only date back a couple hundred years or so. People seem to think that anything out of recent memory is ancient tradition.

This sounds like an interesting read, but... I don't know that I like the smash-up of Irish and Welsh. These cultures/tribes were certainly not foreign to each other, but ancient Celtic society was just so tribal that I have a really hard time getting into "pan Celtic" anything now, knowing what I know about the history.

I don't mind if folks want to publish stuff based on their UPG or journey-work they've found useful, but if you're going to put lore and/or scholarly stuff in there, then you better do it right. Otherwise, just stick to your own writing.

Karen

Naomi J

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Quote from: dragonfaerie;141559
You'll find potatoes in a lot of "traditional" Irish recipes that only date back a couple hundred years or so. People seem to think that anything out of recent memory is ancient tradition.

 
Potatoes are a traditional Irish food. There are socio-historical reasons for that which are worth being aware of, when dealing with a living culture. Traditions don't have to be ancient to be valid.
"We're all stories, in the end. Make it a good one, eh?"
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dragonfaerie

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Quote from: Naomi J;141562
Potatoes are a traditional Irish food. There are socio-historical reasons for that which are worth being aware of, when dealing with a living culture. Traditions don't have to be ancient to be valid.

 
No, they don't. My use of quotes was to distinguish that idea of tradition being ancient. Boxty might be traditional Irish food, but it wasn't eaten by the ancients in their stone circles. (Any more than spaghetti was made by paelo-Italians.)

And I personally don't care if someone wants to incorporate potatoes into neo-pagan ritual honoring Irish Gods, but I do if they try to claim it's an ancient practice. Traditional, perhaps, but not ancient.

And now I really want some potato pancakes...

Karen

Naomi J

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Quote from: dragonfaerie;141567
No, they don't. My use of quotes was to distinguish that idea of tradition being ancient. Boxty might be traditional Irish food, but it wasn't eaten by the ancients in their stone circles. (Any more than spaghetti was made by paelo-Italians.)

And I personally don't care if someone wants to incorporate potatoes into neo-pagan ritual honoring Irish Gods, but I do if they try to claim it's an ancient practice. Traditional, perhaps, but not ancient.

And now I really want some potato pancakes...

Karen

 
I laugh at the 'potato goddess' silliness as much as anyone, but I think the neo-pagan tendency to attempt to erase recent Irish history is nearly as damaging as the claim that modern practices are ancient ones.

And I know a lot of Gaelic polytheists who offer whiskey to their gods, although we can't be sure distilling reached Ireland until about the 15th century. My gods certainly appreciate it regardless.
"We're all stories, in the end. Make it a good one, eh?"
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dragonfaerie

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Quote from: Naomi J;141568
I laugh at the 'potato goddess' silliness as much as anyone, but I think the neo-pagan tendency to attempt to erase recent Irish history is nearly as damaging as the claim that modern practices are ancient ones.

And I know a lot of Gaelic polytheists who offer whiskey to their gods, although we can't be sure distilling reached Ireland until about the 15th century. My gods certainly appreciate it regardless.


I'd agree with all of that. And will point out that I think beer brewing is much older, and who really needs a good excuse to offer up some good beer? :D:

I think a lot of Gaelic polytheists try to wipe out the Christian influences on the spirituality, especially with the Irish. I think that's foolish and pointless on a lot of levels.

Karen

Naomi J

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Quote from: dragonfaerie;141570
I'd agree with all of that. And will point out that I think beer brewing is much older, and who really needs a good excuse to offer up some good beer? :D:


Heh. I often go seriously anachronistic and offer Guinness. It's just so good that I'm sure the gods have been drinking it in the Otherworld since it was invented. :D:

I guess I'm at the 'the gods would move with the times' end of things, more than I think I am. But, as you say, as long as no one's claiming new practices are ancient ones, I think that's OK.

Quote
I think a lot of Gaelic polytheists try to wipe out the Christian influences on the spirituality, especially with the Irish. I think that's foolish and pointless on a lot of levels.


Oh yes, I agree. With St Patrick's Day approaching, the 'snakes are druids' brigade are rattling their spears. I'll be going offline for the day, as it drives me absolutely batty. Last year I ended up having an argument with someone who honestly believed that St Patrick had committed genocide... :eek:
"We're all stories, in the end. Make it a good one, eh?"
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Stone Onto Sand

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