We strike a spark,
Against the dark,
Between the Shadows and the Stars,
That we may see the Way.
~Opening of the Unfolding Circle Casting
Who We Are:
Founded in 2001, The Circle of the Dragon's Crystal-Unfolding (more commonly called just "the Unfolding Path" is based on the Draconian Path of Wicca/Wysardn.
The Draconian Path is itself an amalgam of Welsh Celtic, Celtic Traditonal Wicca and Wysardn Colleges, founded in 1986 by progenitor Lord Ash who brought Wysardn teachings from Europe and melded it with the workings of his Floridian coven. Wysardry is a survival of the druids of Britain who fled the Isle of Mona and spread throughout Europe during the three Burning Times.
Incidentally, there are more than a few groups who also use the name Draconian. The one from which we come is neither the Salem one, the one founded from a Japanese book, nor the one related to Voudou. While they are no doubt valid paths, they are not those from which we descend.
The major difference between Unfolding and Draconian is that we have dispensed with the requirement to climb both ladders of Witchcraft and Wysadry...somewhat. The original reason for that requirement was that Lord Ash felt that there were many wysards who were not balanced with the tempering of religious/moral teachings, and many witches who couldn't magick themselves out of a paper bag. Thus the Draconian path was required to stay in balance with their elevations as wysards and their initiations as witches/priests.
Unfortunately, wysardry is not for everyone. The path is scholarly and highly challenging. While a lofty goal, we found that the result was that certain excellent priests and teachers were held back. Therefore, in the Unfolding path wysards are still required to study as priests and keep their elevations in balance with their initiations, but those who do not feel the call to wysardry may climb the ladder soley as priests. (Though they are still highly encouraged to study the wysardly arts and sciences.)
At the essence of our path is belief in the Dragon, an ancient Celtic term for the All-That-Is. We do not see this as an actual dragon, nor do we worship "dragon gods" but instead as the living, breathing, sentient Power of the Universal All, which is both contained in us and of which we are a part. The Dragon is the grass on which you trod, the computer screen before you, a star shining light on planets far beyond your grasp, the heartbeat of our own living Earth and a child crying in Somalia. All is one and one is a shard of the All, ever merging and evolving within Itself.
Perhaps the seed of the idea of calling the All "Dragon" is that dragons are mystical, larger than life beings of power, who guard hidden secrets - the treasures of our inner selves.
Although our roots are in the main, Welsh/Celtic, "Unfoldings" are not required to worship any particular pantheon. Our main facets of deity, below the Dragon Itself are seen as Goddess and God, with those faceted into four main faces of each: Maiden/Mother/Matron/Crone and Lover/Father/Warrior/Hunter.
We follow the Rede, however with such a large base in wysardn teachings, most Unfoldings consider themselves "witches" rather than "Wiccan", and as with our progenitor tradition, we find we are evolving toward
something that is not strictly "Wiccan" in nature.
Personal responsibility is seen as essential. Responsibility being defined as "the ability to respond". Keep in mind, however that to maintain balance (and sanity) as a person, one can only respond to a limited number of situations at a time. Self-responsibility also includes the student's need to direct the course of their own learning, asking for what is needed.
Balance is seen as an imperative as well. While we have grown from the Draconian insistence on balancing the ladder of study, our ideal is to be neither White nor Black, Light nor Dark, but the Grey of understanding, equality and the ability to see both sides of a matter. Light is an aspiration, an ideal to reach for, while Darkness is that inside which if brought to balance can become one's greatest strength. In staying to the Grey, we allow ourselves to nurture the Rainbow of possibility that shines from our growing facets of perfect becoming.
While our worship tends to be more Apollonian than Dionysian, there is room for both forms of expressions. Our magic has much that is ceremonial at its core and our teaching focus has a strong scholarly bent.
At present the Unfolding Path is based in Orlando, Florida.
Currently the group is private open only to those members and seekers of the Tradition. We do offer seekers classes on occasion, if you are interested in knowing more about us, or possibly attending a circle check our offical website located at : http://www.wix.com/tordenstorm/cdcu
Contact info and forums are accessible on the contact page.
While we would love the opportunity to get to know you, this meetup group is PRIVATE to our members. We use it merely as a calendar to keep our students on track with class dates, and since that contains the personal information of our members, this meetup is not open to those who aren't in the trad already. I'm sure you'll understand since you probably wouldn't want your address and phone number published on the web. [:)]
We open our Seekers class to new members approximately once a year. Here's our faq and how to apply. And yes it's long as heck.
1) Please DO NOT click on the meetup's join link UNLESS you have spoken to us in person and received verbal approval. We are readily accessible through the Sublime Elm meetup and the OPC (Orlando Pagan Collective) meetup.
2) Please DO join our OFFICIAL discussion forums - you can get there through this link: http://www.unfolding.ucoz.com/forum or by clicking on the forums on the contact page at the above link. That will help us get to know you.
3) If you are in Orlando, contact Nyt or Lemur at the Sublime Elm or OPC Meetup groups (info below).
4) Be officially accepted by Unfolding as a Seeker. Presently interviews are closed. We will consider re-opening around Samhain. There's no guarantee on this, as we must be sure that we can still be of service to our present students if we take on new ones.
5) We are very committed to our students and in the past have seen how growing too fast spreads our resources of time and energy thin. Please bear with us as we are a small group with presently only two teachers (and at the moment, we teach in tandem, not separately). We hope that as our present students learn, grow, gain knowledge and confidence and escalate their own process, that we will be able to take on more students.
Obviously this process depends on our present students being ready and able to teach and thus we are supremely concerned that they get our first attentions, which they so well deserve. (We love you guys!) We do not believe in taking someone on as a student, giving them the basic info and then abandoning them to flail about for themselves. We've seen it happen and it's not kind.
Understand that if we accept you as a student we are pretty much giving you our commitment for a lifetime. We're saying that we will be there to help you weather your storms possibly for as long as both of us are on this lovely Earth. You may stumble or retreat momentarily. We may as well. We're all human. However by accepting you, we are promising to at least attempt to do so.
Even if you leave Unfolding or find out it's not the right path for you, we still plan to be here on friendly basis to make sure that you have access to us if you need. You have to really screw up for us to write you off completely.
And since promises aren't taken lightly here, we don't make them lightly.We would rather hold off on accepting you until both you and we are ready.
6) Attrition happens. We are not a large group, it is not our desire to be a large group. Well maybe 20 or 30 years down the road, but certainly not now.
It's our guess (based on poor math but excellent observation) that about 4 out of 10 of you who are accepted to our classes will make it through our approximately 6 months Seekers class to Dedication.
The number of people who go from being a Dedicant to being an Initiate are even lower.
Some people Initiate and then go no further. It's all up to what you want.
7) This path is about personal responsibility and personal growth. We cannot FORCE you to do homework, we cannot MAKE you show up for class.
We cannot even keep the usual life issues from getting in your way. That's up to YOU. Is being an Unfolding important to you? Can you manage it with your personal life? Do you want to? Are we even the right path for you?
If you join with us, be prepared to work and work hard.
Unfolding believes that free will is and should be supreme. You are the perfect shard of the Dragon that you are, and must express your own self in exactly the right way for your individual soul.
Being an Unfolding is hard work. Not only will we not spoon-feed or babysit you, but we will ask you to take the Karmic Express to Enlightenment. Yeah, no kidding. We ask you to bare your soul, rip your heart out and put it back together, study hard, read and research. Unfolding is not for sissies.
8) Your life is private. We may get involved in your life if you become our student. We do not ever do this vicariously. Really we are busy and have so much to do that we would hope that your life will be simple and relaxing to both you and us.
We will not tell your tales without permission. We expect the same in return.
9) If you get a "Sorry not right now" answer, it is not a permanent no. We are glad you asked, and please do ask again. When you ask, and continue to ask, it lets us know that you're really interested in our group enough that you are willing to come back time and again. It lets us know that you are truly interested in our Path and more likely to stick with it. The more you come back each time with "I'm still asking," the more likely you are to get in,
A caveat on that. The best interval to ask again is approximately every 6 months. Asking every 2 weeks is counter-productive. The best TIME to ask is just before or around Samhain, since that is usually about when we start a new class if we do so.
That doesn't mean that asking at other times is bad, it just means that you will be more likely to get the "ask again, later" answer.
10) Asking is a very important point in our Path. Some folks have asked once and been immediately admitted. Usually because they were folks we already knew and were HOPING would ask if it was their right Path.
Other folks have had to ask multiple times. It's not that they were wrong for the Path, it's just that they had off timing and asked at the wrong time. Or we didn't know them at first and as we got to know them we found out that they meshed well with us.
10) We are really not a newbie path. If you are new to Wicca, witchcraft, paganism, then we might not be the right path for you. We do not teach Wicca 101 and expect you to already know it. We sometimes accept students who are relatively new to Wicca, but when we do it is because something about them was special and touched a chord and told us that they "felt" right. Lady Pixie Moondrip is NOT the High Priestess in charge. If you are "rejected" because you're too new, get some study under your belt and if you're still interested, come back and ask again.
11) If we say "ask again" and you are "rejected" we probably won't tell you why.That's part of our policy. It means nobody gets insulted. It's also a test. If you really want us you will ask again.
If we say ask again:
It might be because you are too new to Wicca. It might be because we have an ongoing class and just can't add more folks at the moment. (Try back a little before Samhain!) It might be because we just don't feel an empathic connection with you. It might be because we feel you belong in another path altogether. (In that case we'll probably send you in the direction of another group.) And yes, since we're human it might even be because we just don't mesh with you and potentially want to slay you on sight, but the likelihood of that is VERY RARE.
Again, if you really mean it, ask again later.
12) We do not EVER charge for teaching Seekers, Dedicants or Initiates classes in our tradition. If an occasion happens when we need to rent a hall or some such, we may ask for donations.
We do run some optional paid-for classes that while highly suggested are not mandatory but will certainly help your growth. If you are already one of our Seekers or above and want to attend one of those classes, let us know and we'll try to work something out.
13) If you are interested in finding out more about us :) We again encourage you to check out our OFFICIAL discussion forums above and below.
To find out more about us visit:
While these forums are private, we are very active and public within our pagan community. If you would like to meet with us in person, we encourage you to join us at [color=seagreen]The Downtown Circle of the Sublime Elm[/color]. They are a wonderful local meetup open to everyone, regardless of experience, path, or beliefs. You will find us at almost all of the events, Esbats and Sabbats. We do host open rituals with them through out the year. We are also very active in hosting public classes through the Sublime Elm, do join us there and get to know us!
Thank You and Blessed Be,
Nyt and Lemur
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