Posts Tagged ‘Druid Plant Oracle’

Interesting how the card for the weekend suggested we focus on projects and creative pursuits, while today’s card on a Monday suggest rest and retreat. Sometimes the cards go opposite of what societal norms are for a reason – shaking up our patterns and routines.

Have a good week, everyone!


The Restorers – Roseroot, St. John’s Wort & Valerian

Retreat, balance, or calm. On the other side, imbalance, anxiety, or disturbance

THE CARD: The Restorers are a trio of ancient and indigenous plants of the Druid sourcelands, which act to restore the balance between body and soul, healing the heart and mind with their calming and strengthening powers. The card shows a Druid healer in her bothy, sitting beside the fire. Through the open door, we see the Scottish Highlands. Roseroot and Valerian hand drying in bunches from the rafters, and freshly gathered St. John’s Wort lies on the table.

MEANING: Although adventure and excitement are necessary ingredients in life, we also need periods of peace and calm: oases in our busy lives. Drawing this card in a reading may mean that you should create such a time for yourself now. Retreats are an important part of spiritual practice, and in Druidry these can include visiting the old sacred sites and walking the old tracks. But wherever you are, you can take a retreat. Even if you are busy, see if you can withdraw from your schedule for three hours, during which time no one disturbs you and you treat yourself to whatever will help you find calm. Better still is a longer retreat – three days or more – in a setting close to Nature. By taking such a break, you give your body and soul a chance to catch up with each other add to find balance once more.

This card may also indicate that you or someone you know are out of balance and feel disturbed and anxious. Life is often puzzling, and relationships are so difficult that it is no wonder so many people suffer from anxiety and depression. Now may be the time to tackle this imbalance with a combination of counseling, herbal medicine, and lifestyle changes.

Alternatively, the card may indicate that a situation or project is unstable or completely unrealistic, and that a good dose of common sense is required to get it back on track. It may be time to hire a consultant or simply get someone to look at the problem objectively and give advice.

The Druid Plant Oracle by authors Philip and Stephanie Carr-Gomm and artist Will Worthington

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This time of year often brings out complaints about how everyone is ready for spring – people don’t like this barebones season. But it is in this season that we should appreciate even more the bounty that nature and our efforts have brought us and sustains us through this darker season. Here in Kansas and many other agricultural areas, this is the time when winter wheat, planted back in the fall, is getting its needed exposure to cold temps it needs to sprout in early spring. It’s the time when the soil rests and regenerates. This time of year may not FEEL like a time of abundance, but it is.

Likewise, we too can be abundant and be nourished at this time.



Wheat – Harvest, Nourishment, Abundance (Restlessness, Seeking Roots)

Meaning: The time of the harvest is a time of abundance – of appreciation for all that Nature has given us. It is also a time for celebrating the results of your hard work, and choosing this card could indicate that it is time to stop working for a while, to take some time to appreciate your achievements and give thanks for the harvest of your life. It may be that you spend a great deal of energy sowing seeds and caring for your plants – working for the future and caring for your family – but it is vital that you also give yourself time to savor life in the moment and to enjoy the family as a community, a tribe, too.

This card may also suggest that you are entering a phase of abundance, bringing you riches in your relationships and in your spiritual, creative, and material lives. This is a card that symbolizes generosity: when your needs at a material and emotional level are satisfied, you are then free to focus on the gifts you can give to the world.

On the flip side, this card could indicate that you are having trouble settling in one place. You may long to go traveling, or to have a more flexible lifestyle. Or you could be experiencing quite the opposite feeling – you may have been moving often in recent times and now you feel that you need to settle and put down roots. Alternatively, perhaps you are torn between the nomad life, with all the excitement that movement and traveling can bring, and the settled, rooted life, which offers comfort and familiarity. It may help to remember that both the hunter-gatherer and the settled farmer live within us as ancestral archetypes, and that we can honor both at different times of our lives.

The Druid Plant Oracle by Philip and Stephanie Carr-Gomm and artist Will Worthington

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Today might be a good time to step back and gain some insight if your path seems confusing or littered with obstacles. We need to be able to understand our true motivations for our actions and choices – which is easier said than done!

Have a good weekend, everyone!



Prophecy, Clairvoyance, Protection (also Confusion, Indecisiveness, Negativity)

The card shows Mugwort growing on a riverbank. Its flowers have not yet fully opened as it is Midsummer’s Eve, the time when tradition dictates that its leaves should be gathered. A full moon can be seen between the summer clouds, and the moonlight on the surface of the water reminds us that Mugwort is reputed to aid in the ancient art of scrying, whereby the seer gazes onto the surface of water or into a crystal ball to divine the future.

Meaning: Using an oracle such as this can help you to see beyond the everyday. But in addition to reading the words on this page, you need to engage your intuitive abilities so that you can sense the card’s meaning in a way that is valuable in the context of your own life. Choosing this card in a reading may suggest that condition are propitious for the development of your intuitive powers. Mugwort is said to aid in the work of prophecy and clairvoyance, which means “clear-seeing.” Rather than developing any psychic power for its own sake, the Druid seeks to develop the ability to see and understand things clearly, and it may be that such a clarity is a quality that you need to seek in your present situation. You can only achieve the objectivity necessary for clear-seeing when you are untroubled – when you feel safe and secure emotionally. Mugwort is a powerful herb of protection and can help to create an atmosphere of safety that banishes all negative influences while also connecting you to your inner source of strength and healing.

On the flip side, there are times when it seems almost impossible to see things clearly. There is such turbulence in your inner or outer life that it is hard to come to any kind of objective decision about how you should react or behave. If you have chosen this card reversed, it may indicate that you are finding it hard to come to a decision or to see the way forward. It may be that you simply need to wait for the situation to change – for the turbulent waters to become still again, so that you can gaze onto the surface to know yourself again – to see your reflection clearly once more. And then, looking beyond yourself toward the moon reflected in the water, perhaps you will be able to discern your deeper purpose and the choices you should make. In the meantime, ask yourself how much time you spend in critical thought, and to what degree you blame other people or situations for your current difficulties. It may be that you need to find ways to dispel negative influences in your life, and the best place to begin is within your own heart and mind.

Druid Plant Oracle by authors Philip and Stephanie Carr-Gomm and artist Will Worthington

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One of the most beautiful cards in this deck, Mistletoe is a powerful plant in Pagan and especially Druid traditions. While it can mean that we need to learn to accept the dark and be independent, it can also indicate a fresh new cycle.



Mistletoe (Druidh-lus) – Healing, Fertility, Inspiration (or Sterility, Lack of Guidance, Distilling Wisdom)

Meaning: In the Druid ceremony of Alban Arthan, the Winter Solstice, all lights are extinguished at the heart of the rite, to symbolize the time of the longest night. Then a candle is lit and all participants light their own candles from this one flame. This symbolizes the rebirth of the sun and the birth of the Mabon – the divine child that lives in each of us. Mistletoe is then distributed to all, since mistle berries symbolize the power of this moment. Drawing this card may indicate that a period of difficulties over, as a new cycle dawns. Just as a newborn baby should be nurtured in warmth and safety, so too should the beginnings of new projects and phases in your life be nourished close to your heart. Like Awen – the three drops of inspiration in Ceridwen’s brew – Mistletoe brings guidance, inspiration, and fertility, which augurs well for any creative endeavor. Since Mistletoe was known as All-heal, finding this card in a reading may well indicate that, indeed, all is being healed.

On the flip side, this card might indicate that sometimes we need to learn to walk in the dark. However such we seek guidance and advice, it eludes us as if the Universe is telling us that we must stand on our own two feet and make our choices without any help. While this can be lonely and painful, it forces us to draw on our inner qualities and instincts and, in the end, this can serve our deeper purpose. In this way, lack of guidance becomes a meaningful part of our soul-journey.

Choosing this card may also indicate that you are experiencing a time of sterility or lack of inspiration. Remember that the sun is only reborn at the time of the longest night, and that the Bright Knowledge of Awen emerges out of a “baleful” brew that is poisonous. Out of difficulties we can distilled wisdom.

Druid Plant Oracle by authors Philip and Stephanie Carr-Gomm and artist Will Worthington

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Many thanks for your patience as I took a week off from the card without notice. I hope everyone’s week went well, and I hope it was a happy and gratitude-filled one for those of us who celebrated Thanksgiving last week.

We are back today with a powerful card from the Druid Plant Oracle. See you tomorrow!



The Guardians – Elder, Hawthorn, and Birch

The Guardians are three trees that together act as preservers of our health, possibly even prolonging our lives, by strengthening the immune system and the key organs of the heart and circulatory system, the liver, and kidneys. Each of them is member of the Ogham family of 18 trees and seven plants that make up this mysterious woodland alphabet that has come to be known as the “Druid’s tree language.”

The card shows a Birch tree growing between an Elder and a Hawthorn. The three trees act like guardians of the sacred pool, in which we can see Brooklime, also know as Water Pimpernel. This may be the mysterious Samolus revered by the Druids, according to Pliny.

Meaning: If you have chosen this card, it may indicate that a situation or relationship which seems to be in difficulty can be preserved and strengthened if action is taken. Sometimes, if there is no expectation of a quick fix, a problem can slowly be turned around over a period of time by a number of small adjustments. The three Guardians act by gradually strengthening the key organs of the body. Similarly, if you take actions to strengthen the specific areas of a relationship, this will, in time, affect every part of it. Rather than focusing on areas of weakness between you, identify where you do connect well, and try to build on these. Long-term relationships need healthy “immune systems” that can cope with the inevitable stresses that arise between two individuals.

This card also reminds us that plants sometimes work best when they are given as a remedy on their own, and sometimes in combination with other plants. If you have chosen this card reversed, it may indicate that you are being called upon to work in a group. Your independence might feel threatened, but is is likely that the synergy generated as a team will be far more effective than if you were to continue to work alone. Alternatively, the card may suggest that you need to have the confidence in your abilities and trust in life to slow down and not take on every offer that is made to you. We often find ourselves rushing through life, anxious that if we stop nobody will want us. Generally this not true, and by slowing down or pausing we give life a chance to show us new directions.

The Druid Plant Oracle by authors Philip and Stephanie Carr-Gomm and artist Will Worthington.

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Screaming roots aside, the Mandrake plant is seen as rather beneficial, suggestion wealth, fertility, and helping to ease pain. Remember that wealth (I tend to prefer the term prosperity) can take many forms and that fertility might not be literal. There is fertile ground for creative and business pursuits as well as creating offspring.

Blessings and have a good Monday,


Mandrake – Wealth, fertility, anesthesia

Meaning: The ability to assuage pain is mandrake’s greatest gift to humanity. Easing pain in others – whether it be physical, mental, or emotional – is a skill that should be treasured. If you have chosen this card, it may indicate that you were called upon to alleviate suffering in someway. This may be as simple as offering reassuring words to distressed friend  or it might involve a vocational choice; perhaps you are considering whether to follow a course of training or work that focuses on alleviating pain in others.

Alternatively, the card may suggest that you are entering a phase of great luck and even wealth. Mandrake has been associated with prosperity and good fortune for centuries, and those who planted seeds of happiness for others in the past can expect to experience joy in their own lives too.

Since mandrake is connected with love and fertility, the card may also mean that love is entering your life or that you are beginning a fertile phase in your physical or spiritual life.

On the flipside, mandrake was considered a magical amplifier, which could act as a magnet to attract love, power, and wealth. Like the Devil (or Cernunnos) card in the tarot, the forces it represents can be beneficial or detrimental depending upon intention and maturity. If you have chosen this card it could also indicate that you need to be aware of the dangers of obsession – of becoming overly occupied with a notion or desire that may have a value, but which risks being all-consuming. 

Although mandrake was used medicinally in the ancient world, it was also the first plant to be used in chemical warfare. Hannibal, the Carthaginian general, faked a retreat from an African enemy, leaving behind wine steeped in mandrake as a poison. Something that is life enhancing in small measures can become toxic in higher doses.

The Druid Animal Oracle by authors Philip and Stephanie Carr-Gomm and artist Will Worthington

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Happy Friday, everyone! Today, we have Ivy to offer us some inspiration, provided we are clear of the muck to be receptive.



Ivy (Eidheann)

Prophecy, Connection, Death & Rebirth (also Ambivalence, Tenacity, Support)

The card shows Ivy growing beside a sacred pool. It’s black series will slowly ripen over the winter to provide food for birds, just as its flowers have offered the year’s last source of nectar and pollen for bees. Around the pool, we can see the carvings of a green man, a double spiral, and the Ogham glyph for Gort.

Meaning: Since classical times, Ivy has been associated with prophetic intoxication, sought by the Druids particularly for creativity so that their work is inspired by something greater than their own personalities alone. Selecting this card may mean that such inspiration is coming to you, or that you should seek it. To be receptive, you will need to still your mind, which will mean first resolving any conflict or confusion that is troubling you. The way to feel free and to forget yourself may be in the apparently opposite direction of becoming more aware of yourself and that which limits you. The poet Robert Frost says, “The best way out is always through,” and you may have to plumb the debts of the issues that trouble you before you can find yourself free of them.

Alternatively, the card may be reaffirming or you the belief that life is cyclical and that nothing is truly lost.

On the other side: Ivy flowers later than any other plant – providing bees with nectar and pollen at the very end of the season. Yet, its charms are hidden and many of us see only the dark, destructive side of its character – in its capacity to smother trees, render walls unstable and invade gardens. Each of us has the ability to bee destructive as well as creative, and both powers are necessary in order for life to flourish. This card may indicate that you should look at this ambivalence in your personality and your relationships, to determine whether you need to start behaving differently.

Ivy is an extraordinarily tenacious and vigorous plant. If you are able to channel both these forces within you, in appropriate ways, you will find it easier to pursue your goals and access your innate vitality.

The Druid Plant Oracle by authors Philip and Stephanie Carr-Gomm and artist Will Worthington

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This card rings true for me at the moment – I’ve been living a very physical, task-oriented existence lately but I feel the need to reconnect with Spirit. Sometimes it’s a hard balance when we have so much that needs done, but we must take time to rest and recharge the mind, body, AND spirit.



Chamomile – Rest, Guardianship, Regeneration

Chamomile brings rest and protection. If you have chosen this card, it may mean that you are entering or need to enter a calm phase in which you will be able to connect again to your inner resources – both physical and spiritual. Our lives can be so frenetic that even when we do take time to rest we find it hard to calm down. Chamomile can help us to do this. In addition, chamomile is one of the Saint Johns wort’s plants – a term that was used for a number of herbs traditionally gathered on Saint Johns day, and, originally, probably at the summer solstice. These plants convey the energy of the summer sun – regeneration and vitality. Without vitality, whatever we do is colored by a sense of fatigue or lack of enthusiasm, and choosing this card may suggest that you need to focus on how you regain your zest for life, and the energy you need to cope with the demands of the life you have chosen. This card may also be suggesting we need to go back to basics, the simple things in life, or even to return to the family and the nurturing it can offer.

Most people’s lives tend to be stressful, but is how they cope with it that determines whether or not it makes them ill or depressed. This card may also indicate that you’re experiencing a good deal of stress at the moment and it can be helpful to focus not on the source of that stress, which could be out of your control, but on how you are reacting to it.

The more you focus on something, the more your awareness is consumed by preoccupation with it. One of the values of a spiritual path lies in its ability to offer inspiring ideas, rather than worrying thoughts, to focus upon. It should also offer an oasis of calm – sanctuary in the midst of life’s troubles – to which you can turn when you feel overwhelmed or under great pressure. In Druidry, the sanctuary is often visualized as a sacred Grove – a Sun-Dappled Glade in the woods – where you can rest and meditate, reconnecting to the essential in life, and finding support and inspiration of an age-old tradition.

The Druid Plant Oracle by Philip and Stephanie Carr-Gomm, art by Will Worthington

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While looking soft and warmly colored, the Lady’s Mantle card is a bit more complex than it seems on the surface. Notice the stormy skies in the background and the Sheila na Gig carved in the stone. These all point to the different potentials of the card.



Lady’s Mantle – The Feminine, Detail, and Miracles

Meaning: A dewdrop is a tiny thing but, when you gaze into it, it acts like a crystal ball, revealing the whole world within it; it is reminiscent of William Blake’s famous lines:

To see a World in a Grain of Sand
And a Heaven in a Wild Flower
Hold Infinity in the palm of your hand
And Eternity in an Hour.

This card may be reminding you to treasure the small things in life because it is in the details that a life grows rich, and every person, every subject, every event, grows richer the more we focus upon it.

The card may also urge you to connect more deeply with the Goddess in your spiritual practice or with the Feminine principle in your emotional and psychological life. It may be that you have been used to approaching the world and relationship in an analytical or objective way that is no longer serving you. Now may be the time to open to that less predictable, sometimes wilder, way of relating to and looking at things that could bring miracles into your life.

On the flip side, this card reminds us the most people are quite naturally dismayed when the going gets tough. But if you have chosen this card reverse, it may indicate that you have the good fortune of being able to see opportunities for growth even in the most despairing of situations. The alchemists of old believed that gold could be made out of “base matter” and that this, though dismissed as worthless by many, provided them with their working material. 

In the same way, the challenges and trials of life are seen by the Druid and spiritual alchemist as ideal opportunities for learning and development. Although to some extent this involves reframing a situation in its most positive light, to “make the best of a bad job,” a deeper process is at work. Character, qualities of soul, wisdom, maturity, and compassion come not from a life of ease and tranquility, but from a life in which our hearts, mind, and sometimes even our bodies are pitted against forces we may not understand.

Druid Plant Oracle by authors Philip and Stephanie Carr-Gomm and artist Will Worthington

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As the card description explains, the warrior spirit does not always have to be used for war literally. We sometimes have to fight for the time, space, and right (in others’ eyes anyway) to create, to rest, and many other things that our souls need. Use this warrior spirit carefully though or you may cut the connections you need to further your goals.

Woad – Freedom, Bardistry, Warriorhood

The card shows Woad flowers in detail in the foreground, and a mature plant grows proudly beside a spear, symbolizing Woad’s connection with warriorhood; this is enhanced by the carving of the boar in the rock behind. Spears were often made with the wood of Holly – Tinne in Ogham, the Celtic tree alphabet – and we can see the unmistakeable outline of Holly leaves in the tree above.

Meaning: Nothing evokes the feeling of freedom more than the sight of a clear blue sky, and Woad dye reproduces this shade of blue perfectly on cloth or in paint. I you have chosen this card, it may indicate that you are striving to gain freedom, and the fact that Woad evokes the qualities of both bardistry and warriorhood offers a clue as to the way forward. Bardistry is the art of the Bard, who in the old days was Druid storyteller, poet, or musician. Each of us has a Bard, a Creative Self, within us, and this card suggests that true freedom comes when you are able to give full expression to your creativity. To do this, you sometimes need the energy of a warrior not to wound others but to provide you with the aggression, ambition, and single-mindedness to achieve your aim. Without these qualities, it is hard to avoid stifling your creativity with concern for others’ needs and doubts about your own abilities.

Alternatively: Astrologers assign Saturn, the planet of structure and limitation, to Woad, and  this card could mean that the structure around you is hindering rather than helping you. Perhaps you are feeling wounded or hampered by obstacles; longing for freedom from the limitations around you. If this is the case, it may be of help to turn this card around and gaze at the image upright – particularly at the sky. Rather than talking about what you want freedom from, think about what you want freedom for. Finish the sentence “I want the freedom to. . . .” If you are able to find goals that make your heart sing, the very things that seemed to be standing in your way can become stepping stones the lead to a flowering of your creativity. In the same way, if you feel wounded, although it is important not to deny that awareness, it may be helpful now to shift your focus from the wound to what you can give to the world.

Druid Animal Oracle by Philip and Stephanie Carr-Gomm, art by Will Worthington

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