Poet On Fire: Erynn Rowan Laurie on Celtic Paganism

You talk about the desire for Celtic Reconstructionist groups to begin to form local communities in the same way Heathen hearths have sprung up. Are you seeing more local groups form? Is there a networking initiative underway in the CR community to help facilitate this?

I'm certainly seeing more signs of local groups out there, though I'm not nearly as wired into the larger CR community as I was in years past. That said, the community's pretty fragmented and there's no central forum like Nemeton used to be, so I can't say there's any kind of networking initiative at the moment. The Imbas organization was an early attempt at creating a larger organizational framework for CR, but I think it was just too early for an international organization. There weren't nearly enough people who were interested and committed enough to make a project like that work. These days there are a few smaller organizations around, and I know there are an immense number of individuals who are doing their own work. I think growth of this sort will be slow because of the community's fragmentation. 

Locally, we have a small group that's been meeting for a couple of years now, though we have a long way to go before we have a stable set of rituals for the year or anything that we're able to just sit down with someone and say "this is what our group does and how we do it." I think a lot of this is the result of the fact that we're building it by committee rather than having someone come down with a fiat and saying, "we're doing it this way." There are advantages to either option, and doing it as a group is the slower path.

What I do see are individuals who are taking what they find online and working with it when they feel it suits their needs. I'm also seeing people translating extant CR materials into other languages. Pieces that I've written or been involved in writing have been translated into several languages. I've seen stuff out there in Portuguese, Spanish, German, Russian, and French so far; I know there are some active folks in Brazil who have been doing quite a bit of work on translations for their community. That really excites me.


Read Part Two of the conversation with Erynn in which she discusses her writings and current projects.

Erynn Rowan Laurie is a poet and writer who lives on Puget Sound. Animist, polytheist, and centered on the pre-Christian spirituality of Ireland and Scotland, she is the author of
Ogam: Weaving Word Wisdom and has occasionally been known to have a few things to say about Pagan religions. For more information on Erynn and her writing visit The Preserving Shrine.

Star Foster is a Pagan numbers-geek roaming the wilds of the North Georgia mountains. She enjoys bluegrass, RPGs, war novels, and keeping abreast of the wild, wonderful world of Modern Paganism


5/10/2010 4:00:00 AM
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