2. Duir

Gifts, doorways, standing on the shoulders of giants, luck

Tree: Oak (Quercus spp.)

Letter: D

Oaks in Wheaton, Illinois (author’s own photo)

There isn’t a bad side to Duir, even when ill-dignified. Maybe it is because the mighty Oak is king of all trees and therefore king of the Ogham. Drawing Duir means that you will receive, are receiving, or have received a gift. The gift can come in unexpected forms — it could be as simple as a thought or it may be, in rarest of cases, an actual physical gift. Understanding Duir does take the prerequisite ability to appreciate gifts. The modern world is cursed with entire classes of people who take luxuries for granted and for whom gratitude is an untenable concept. Those people cannot be helped by any force other than glacial procession of time and the unimaginable powers that shape it.

Duir’s influence is like a good father or wise old grandpa: generous, kind, wise, full of knowledge and happy to share it, protective, and nurturing. He is a living library. He acts as a guide, creator, and ruler.

Questions when you draw Duir:

-When have you benefitted from good luck in a small or big way?
-How did you use that lucky streak?
-Where would you be without certain privileges or gifts you lucked into?
-In what way have gifts either helped you or prevented you from becoming a better person?

Duir ill-dignified excess: Plain luck

Usually this points to a mundane moment of good fortune. You’ll remember something just in time or you’ll barely squeak by a deadline. You are grateful for your many gifts even if you feel you didn’t deserve them. Instead of worrying about your privileges and gifts, use what you are given to make yourself a better person. If you are upper-middle class to rich, simplify your life and give away the lion’s share of the excess instead of wallowing in constant luxury (vacations, status symbols/activities, parties, fancy meals, etc.) and then feeling guilty about it or expecting indulgences will cure your depression. Think about the gifts you have been given: did they prevent you from learning a skill that a poor, more streetwise person knows?

If you are poor, consider the gifts you have that don’t have anything to do with money. This includes talents, drive, and common sense. Jesus made that “a camel will pass through the eye of a needle more easily than a rich man will pass into the kingdom of heaven” comment for a reason.

The best way to appreciate gifts is to pay them forward. This does not automatically mean donating to a charity, as many charities are corrupt and donating to them does nothing or worse, actively harms others or makes them more dependent on charity. Paying it forward can be very simple — a heartfelt thank you or a small kindness for someone else to spread the kindness done to you. Maybe your lucky moment gives you sufficient energy correct some of your own past behavior. There is no effort wasted in trying to live up to your own potential.

Duir ill-dignified dearth: Possible enabling

A gentle reminder to set reasonable limits in order to care for yourself. You have given much away because it feels good to spread generosity around; don’t forget to save some time and resources for yourself. Of course you can still give to those in need, but if someone (be it a person or a cause) only uses your donated time, money, or energy to destroy themselves and others, it is time to withdraw some or all of your assistance. There may be a worthier person or cause where your help will actually be used rather than squandered. Remember you are not the maker of another’s karma — sometimes it is better (for them and you) to stand back and let forces act upon them, even if said forces are cruel taskmasters.

“Tis the gift to be simple, ’tis the gift to be free
‘Tis the gift to come down where we ought to be,
And when we find ourselves in the place just right,
‘Twill be in the valley of love and delight.” -Old Shaker melody