One of the things I’ve always found interesting is the idea of Morphic Resonance as it relates to thought processes and rituals. Morphic Resonance is Rupert Sheldrake’s idea that as something happens repeatedly, it creates a field that future occurrences can tune in to. While I’m pretty sure this is not something I can believe about biology or chemistry (since the claim is unfalsifiable), it’s something I’ve always wondered about in the metaphysical realm.
It’s something I’ve felt in the past during certain rituals as well. There is a concept in parts of Catholicism that one of the reasons everyone celebrates the same Mass is so you can tap into the togetherness of all the other people in the world who have been, are, or will be celebrating it. The same goes for Wicca, especially when you consider that a circle is a place that exists outside of time. If the job of a Witch is to turn the Wheel, it makes sense that all the solitary (and coven-based) Witches can turn the wheel “together” while they’re in their separate circles. There’s a lot of power that way.
So how does this all relate to Druidry?
Well, with the concept of the Gate being at the center of all time and space, there’s definitely an element of morphic resonance there. Not having a unified ritual is a little harder though, and I have definitely felt more “on my own” during Druidic rituals than I ever did working as a solitary Witch, even though both were done entirely solitary. I think part of this is also that so many Druids worship so many different Gods from such diverse times and places. There’s not a strong current of unified worship so much as just a unified holiday.
I am hoping, as I develop more of a sense of the Gate and it’s ability to center a ritual in metaphysical space, I’ll feel more connected to other Druids who are doing their rituals, and that my Gate will feel connected to all the other Gates at the Holy Days. I intend to focus some of my energy on that feeling during my Yule ritual, since I know we’ll all be celebrating around the same time.
I also definitely feel that there is a possibility for certain morphic currents in some of the invocations and prayers of ADF. As I use the same invocations over and over, I’ll end up creating my own currents as well as, ideally, tying into the currents that other members of ADF have set up.
This is part of why I’m a fan of a combination of both structured and spontaneous prayer. Structured, repeated prayers have the ability to set up your subconscious in such a way that you know what’s coming. If you use the same invocation, or the same cues for meditation, your subconscious begins to get the idea that “this means it is Ritual/Meditation/Sleep/Dancing/Divination/Waffles time“. (OK, maybe not waffles, unless you eat waffles regularly. Which you should, because waffles are delicious!)
Anyway, those subconscious cues also help to set up a predictable energy current that you can tap into with each repetition of a ritual element.
This also helps the Gods understand what you want. Using their historical names brings precedent – if you use the name or epithet that a Goddess has been using for millenia, you place yourself among the historical worshipers of that Goddess. If you write your own prayer, and then use it as your invocation to the Ancestors in each ritual, they’ll learn that that prayer comes from you (or whomever you share it with) and both you and they will deepen your understanding of what’s expected of each other through its use.
Of course there’s a time and place for spontaneous, offertory, from-the-heart prayer as well. I like to use structured prayer to set up the connection and spontaneous prayer to sustain and nourish it. The balance is key, for me. That structured prayer is where you find the connection with what other Druids and Pagans have done in the past.
All this to say that I’m working on tapping into the morphic resonance that exists around Druidry. ADF is new, so the morphic currents are newer and fresher, but I think they exist, and I want to learn to feel and be part of them, and add my voice to those currents. With our ties to the past, it’s possible that, through meditation and study, I’ll be able to tap into some of the Paleo-pagan resonances as well, and that would be amazing.