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THE DRUIDS EXAMINED
 
       
Why Did The Druid Religion Fade Away?

       Neodruids and various Neopagans would have us think Christian soldiers went marauding from one Celtic village to the next, brandishing swords spouting "Accept Christianity or die, Druids!". If you don’t believe me, just look on the Internet, and you’ll see webpage after webpage with words and ideas to that effect. The truth is, another group of Pagans, the Romans, had dealt Druidism it’s death blow centuries before.

      The invasion of England by the Romans itself must have greatly shaken the faith of the Celtic people of the power of the Druids. The spells and curses the Druids threw on the Romans didn’t work, and this alone no doubt caused them to loose faith in the Druids. The Romans did indeed allow Druidism to exist, but they greatly weakened it. As already mentioned, they didn’t like the barbaric practices of Druidism, so they greatly curtailed it and introduced their own Roman gods like Zeus and Hercules.

     Hercules, a Greco-Roman idol,  became quite popular in Ancient Britain, and a hill with the image of Hercules (known as "The Rude Man") can been seen carved into a chalk hill in England even to this day. When Christianity came along, the Celts were outgrowing Druidism, and neither it nor Roman paganism could compete with Christianity. Christians did not cause mass executions of Druids, but instead allowed them to live as free men. The same cannot be said of the Druids. The Druids did indeed kill Christians en mass during Christianity’s first attempts to come to the British Isles!

     The Christian Church aimed their missionary efforts at the kings of the British Isles. If they were successful in converting a king, this could also mean the kingdom would follow, in a sort of domino effect. But it might also mean the Pagan subjects would rise up and kill the king. Such was the case on more than one occasion. You won’t read about the slaughter of Christians by Druids in most modern books on Wicca or Neodruidism because the authors of such books want to white wash the subject.

     Druidism had no real promise of a happy after life, while Christianity promises eternal life (even if there really isn't one). Christianity was a simple religion, compared to Roman and Celtic Paganism with their hundreds of gods and goddesses. Christianity also brought about a much more civilized way of living, despite what Neopagans think. Husbands had to treated their wives better. Despite what modern day Neopagan and feminist authors write, women actually had more freedom and more rights when Christianity came along! Masters had to treat their servants and slaves humanely.  Druidism couldn’t compete, and the Celts started to convert.
It was just plain better, begorrah!

     Neodruids seem to blame Christianity solely for the demise of Druidism. Druidism was already in decline when Christianity came along thanks to another group of Pagans, the Romans as already mentioned. In fact, a good bit of what we know about the Druids and the Celts is because Christians decided to put it into writing. When an expedition of Christian missionaries arrived in England under the guidance of St. Augustine in 497 A.D., they found that the Christian church was already established there!`

St. Patrick And The Druids

     Some of what we know about the Druids was preserved to us through St. Patrick. Patrick was born of Briton-Roman birth in what today is Wales. He was captured by marauders and forced to live a life of slavery by Irish Celts. It must have been a terrifying ordeal to live a life at the hands of Celts as a slave. Eventually he escaped and managed to return to his family in England, who were no doubt overjoyed at his return.

    In a dream, Patrick recieved a vision that he was to return to the Irish and bring them the Christian faith. Patrick had many run ins with the Druids wo wanted to kill him, but Patrick always managed to survive. Patrick won many converts to Christ, and became well beloved by the Celtic people just as he is by the modern day Irish. He is not the villain Neopagan authors portray him to be.

    There are two documents that Patrick wrote that survived. There is also a lot of legend passed down orally about St. Patrick that can be dismissed. One such story is Patrick chalenging Druids to a contest to prove who’s books were true. So the story goes, he challenged the Druids into throwing their books into a lake while he threw in his Bible. The Druid’s books sank while St. Patrick’s copy of the Bible floated. The story is unlikely if for no other reason than the Druids were illiterate and didn’t have books!

Conclusions

1. The Druids of ancient Britain and Gaul were a real group, and there are eye witnesses to validate it. Unlike Wicca, Druidism was an actual ancient Pagan religion practiced in Europe in ancient times.

2. The Druids practiced human sacrifice. Life was cheap to the ancient Celts. Druids were feared by the ancient Celts, who thought they had magical powers, and also feared being murdered by them.

3. The Druids tried to throw curses on the invading Romans, but failed to repel the attack because in reality they had no powers. The Romans decimated the power of the Druids centuries before the Christians came along. No doubt the Celts began to lose faith in the Druid’s claim to magic powers when they could not repel the Roman conquest of Britain.

4. The Druid cult was alrady in decline when Christianity came to Britain.

5. The Neodruids of today have no direct link to the Druids of ancient times.

Modern day Druid groups have no direct connection to the Druids of the past.

6. Druids were considered barbaric by the Romans, although the Romans were just as bad. The Druids engaged in human sacrifice and fortune telling by ritual murder. During the throes of death, the superstitions Druids would take the spastic movements as signs of the future.   

                 

  


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