Grove of the Other Gods, ADF serves Druids and like-minded Pagans in the greater New York metropolitan area. Weve held celebrations and rituals in New Brunswick, Jersey City, Manhattan, Morristown, and the Jersey Shore. Weve also been involved in rituals and workshops at various Pagan festivals. Weve been around since Samhain 1990, when we performed our first ritualin Liberty State Park under the skirts of the Goddess of Liberty Enlightening the World, as Green Man Groveand were members of Ár nDraíocht Féin (ADF), which is Gaelic for Our Own Druidry. We are a group of experienced Pagans who believe that the best way to approach the Goddesses and Gods of an earth-centered religion is through practice and dedication and scholarship and fun.
Ár nDraíocht Féin is an international NeoPagan organization whose worship centers on Indo-European pantheons. The study program is based on guilds that are devoted to specific areas of interest. They have a clergy training program, a magazine, and groves throughout North America and Europe. ADF is recognized as a non-profit religious organization, and they are also an honorary member of the British Council of Druids. To learn more about ADF, check out their web site at www.adf.org.
On Imbolc 2002 we voted to change the name of our grove. Grove of the Other Gods was the new name the grove pickedout of roughly one hundred suggested names. The winning name was submitted by one of our members after he saw a fragment of an altar that was dedicated just to the other Gods in the New York Metropolitan Museum of Art. The name reflects the groves traditional closeness to the outsiders as well as the postmodern pan-Indo-European nature of our worship and the exuberant joy that we take in performing old folk traditions. The Other Gods also celebrates the area that we live ina densely-populated and diverse area teeming with cultures and religions from all over the globe: synagogues, mosques, Hindu temples, Jain temples, Sikh temples, Santeria botanicas, Christian churches and cathedrals, various Wiccan covens, Norse hearths, and who knows what else....
Who are the Other Gods?
You decide. We provide a website and a calendar of events run by grove members so you can go to the events you have an interest in when you have the time for it, or you can put your own events on the calendar. We understand that life in the New Jersey / New York area makes special demands on our time and energy (and yours) and we have created a format that lets people devote as much or as little time to the grove as their needs allow.
The Metro-Pagan area is full of people who already have some general Pagan knowledge and who have experience in various arts: music, performance, poetry, prose, satire, painting and sculpture, and, of course, ritual so we try to provide a conducive setting.
Our rituals and workshops are open to the public. We also work with the ADF Druid Dedicants Program and can hook people up with ADF's study program.
Our Druid Rituals
Our rituals are open to all who wish to attend. We celebrate the eight holidays of the Pagan wheel of the year: the solstices, the equinoxes, and the mid-points in between. In addition to rituals on weekends close to the solar holidays, we have rituals on the actual solstice and equinox days. We also hold special rites at various times of the year to celebrate events special to our Grove or Grove members. We seek to re-establish the connections between ourselves and nature, the spiritual world, and the seasons-- connections that humans have celebrated throughout history and before history.
We honor our Earth Mother and we honor our Kindreds. The Kindreds are our Ancestors, the Spirits of Nature and Place that surround us, and our Goddesses and Gods. ADF Druid ritual creates sacred space by symbolically re-creating the cosmos within the ritual-- unlike many other Pagans, we do not cast a circle, and participants are free to come and go, respectfully, during the course of the ritual. We have incorporated many concepts from archeological and anthropological research into our rituals, as well as folk customs and modern ideas.
The ritual culminates in a "praise offering" to the Kindreds, the Earth Mother, and the special Goddesses and/or Gods we may be honoring. The Druids of old offered the food they relied on to survive, as well as gold and silver. We believe that the best sacrifices we can make nowadays involve our time, and the creative efforts of our hearts. Thusly, we dance, sing, tell stories, recite poetry, make vows and promises, or offer up the special fruits of our gardens or trees. We believe that our offerings are reciprocal, and we will be blessed by our Kindreds in return. We try to keep our rituals spontaneous and light-hearted, and we try to create a space that attracts inspiration and participation. And, we always talk about the ritual beforehand, so everyone knows what they're getting into.
Out of 68 groves and protogroves, GOG is one of ADF's largest groves, and we are one of the oldest Druid groves in the United States.*
Eight members have completed ADF's Druid Dedicants Program.
In 2006 Grove of the Other Gods, ADF won the Founders Award for "exceptional public service by a grove or protogrove" for our educational and charitable activities.
* 2012 statistics. Aren't we the Druid's pajamas?