Hail Spirits of Place

“Hail spirits of this place” is a popular Druid line for ritual, in that brief bit at the beginning where we normally honour whatever is around us. It’s something I do outside of ritual situations, and something I like to invest more time in during rituals.

Saturday found me in Wolverhampton, talking about sacred places. Much of the venue was lovely – the hall the market was in had beautiful light, a lot of wood, lovely acoustics and would have been a great place to do ritual. The area for talks had a stage, microphone and lighting, making it a good place for talks, but it didn’t have much atmosphere, it was a bit dead acoustically. In the right space, if I’m talking about ritual or sacred places, I’ll have a play with the room acoustics because that can be magical. I got off the microphone briefly, and went straight back because the room wasn’t going to give me anything.

All the same, I got to talking about spirits of place in ritual, and offered my ‘hail spirits of place’ and something shifted. I felt hairs rising, and gooseflesh breaking out on my shoulders and arms. A keen sense of something with me and behind me that hadn’t been there before. Something friendly and supportive, and glad to be noticed.

I’ve greeted spirits of place in all kinds of places. I’ve done it when I didn’t feel safe, and it has always helped. I do it before talks even when the talks aren’t Pagan. Sometimes the effects are more dramatic than others. Saying it out loud is important – although sometimes that’s a whisper in a toilet cubicle. It’s enough.

Spirits of place do not belong only to distant wild places and iconic ancient sites. They are in your living room, your garden, your workplace. They’re on the school run, the commute, in the car park. Acknowledge the possibility of them and they may acknowledge you in return.

About Nimue Brown

Druid, author, dreamer, folk enthusiast, parent, wife to the most amazing artist -Tom Brown. Drinker of coffee, maker of puddings. Exploring life as a Pagan, seeking good and meaningful ways to be, struggling with mental health issues and worried about many things. View all posts by Nimue Brown

3 responses to “Hail Spirits of Place

  • Ann Beirne

    I know what you mean, I have a house spirit called Simon he gave me this name during a shamanic journey, I hadn’t realise till then and wondered why I always felt that there was a angry spirit in the house and during the journey he told me why, we had had the whole house rewired and he hated the state the place was in so did we, and he wanted to share in our family life he asked that we let him know if we are going to do any major works again I was happy to comply with I think this very reasonable request and we show him all the wallpaper, paint and any other fixtures we might want to use and so far have the thumbs up.

    I was dumfounded by the fact that I believe in spirit everywhere but in our own home!

    I know that he despite the fact that we didn’t acknowledge him until recently saved our house from burning down one Christmas, we had left candles burning on the dinner table and when I went in there was a puddle of wax and burnt wooden table but it hadn’t continued to burn we know he extinguished the candle and saved us all.

  • lornasmithers

    Interesting… I’d agree greeting and having a dialogue with a place really helps. If at all possible I try to visit places in advance before speaking, performing or running a workshop to say hello and make an offering. I can see how speaking ‘hail spirits of place’ aloud to a group connected everyone in with the spirits. I think I might try whatever I do next in public with a public rather than private greeting of the spirits of place and see what happens…

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