When I first began practicing Druidry my inner grove was a cave high up a mountain side behind a waterfall. It was a warm sanctuary that allowed me to feel rooted and protected as I began to explore my inner landscape. I knew I was home when I smelled the rich loam of moss.
Sometime later my mundane life shifted significantly, and I saw that reflected in my inner grove. A meadow filled with golden and royal purple flowers became my inner grove. I’d swim through the tall grasses and follow the ants near the soil’s edge.
Right before joining the order of Bards, Ovates, and Druids my grove migrated into the woods to a clearing surrounded by black walnuts and red oaks. Standing stones dotted the clearing. I remember how amazed I was by the fire that seemed to be always ready and waiting for me in the center of the grove.
This inner grove has now been my home for years. I’ve seen a shift in trees and plants growing in this clearing. New paths have been opened along the edges of the trees. Different guides have wandered through. These shifts have been smaller, more delicate changes compared to the massive location changes I experienced earlier in my practice.
I can now tell that the major shifts in my inner grove were important in marking the major shifts I was experiencing in my life and practice. As a beginner my inner grove needed to serve different desires. Now the shifts I experience are just as important but take a more discerning eye to notice. I’m comfortable (but never too comfortable) with my home in the inner landscape enough that the adventures lie outside of the grove. My inner grove serves more as a landing spot, a sanctuary of reflection, a place of community and conversation with guides.