Anti-consumerist Druid, The
Leaving behind the cult of the consumer and daring to imagine a more magical life.
Many of us are coming to terms with the devastating global effects of overconsumption, and for me the desire to quit shopping has led me to explore Paganism, and then to Druidry!
This is not a book about Druidry. This is a book about how I stopped overconsumption consuming me, and on that journey discovered a connection with nature that led to me becoming a student of Druidry, and about how those beliefs and practices helped me to rebuild a more authentic, creative, enchanted life.
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What Townsend’s book so graciously does, is detail the problems you might be suffering from within your own shopaholicness, provide clear and reasoned insights into how to slow the roll, to get off that well-beaten path, and to teach yourself how to stay away from the addiction of shopping en mass - and all without forcing you to accept that the only path that then needs to be taken is one specifically headed toward Druidism. Townsend’s own journey is thoroughly engaging, her truths raw, and extremely engaging, and all seem to, at one level or another, mirror our own spending habits. Sure, her own path from materialism to a more defined connection with nature is, for want of a better term, spiritually guided, but overall, the book reminds us to always embrace creativity, always lift our heads up and see what is across the way, and never, ever feel compelled to wade through the mire of consumerist commercialism again; well, not without a map on how to get out and be able break free, of course. FULL REVIEW: https://annecarlini.com/ex_books.php?id=431 ~ Exclusive Magazine, Review
Katrina Townsend has written a really important book that explores – based on her own experience – what consumer culture does to a person. She shares her experiences of compulsive shopping, social media addiction and the way all of this eroded her sense of self. Furthermore she does so without falling into the kind of judgemental puritanism you can find in the newly converted, and also avoids self pity or anything that seems self indulgent. It’s an impressive balancing act and makes the book exceedingly readable. My guess is that for anyone caught up in consumer culture, this will be a tremendously helpful book. ~ Nimue Brown, author of Druidry and the Ancestors, Druidry and the Future, Spirituality Without Structure and more, https://druidlife.wordpress.com/2022/11/08/the-anti-consumerist-druid-a-review/
I would really recommend this beautiful book. Reading of Katrina's highs, lows, joys and fears was so thought provoking and helped me solidify some of my own thoughts around these issues. Hearing of the slow unfurling of a new spiritual path and the doubts and awakenings that come with it, was just a joy. To see how Katrina's journey with materialism was part of the path toward Druidry was so inspiring and it’s refreshing to read an account of someone reflecting that journey with honesty, rather than pretending to have all the answers. The tone of the book felt like hearing the story told by a close friend and I really just couldn’t put it down. ~ Moss, walkthespiralpath.co.uk
This introspective debut from Katrina, Consumed blogger Townsend details how her determination to stop “overshopping” led her to druidism. She tells of her efforts as a teen and young adult to “buy myself a sense of identity” and emulate the women she saw in magazines, leading her to make purchases she couldn’t afford. She decided to rein in her spending through a self-imposed “shopping ban” and by following the advice of Marie Kondo. Then a documentary from the environmental activist group Extinction Rebellion caused her to consider how her “frivolous” spending on fast fashion and disposable trinkets increased waste and contributed to climate change, setting Townsend on a path toward anticonsumerism. Her emerging environmentalism spurred her to revisit paganism, which she had dabbled in as a teenager, and she came to enjoy the connection it offers with nature. She gravitated toward the druid tradition because of its connection to animism and conviction that everything natural is sacred. Townsend’s trajectory from skeptic to believer makes this well suited for readers who might not be sold on paganism (she discusses her fear of “being too woo-woo”), and her discussion of how her druidism intersects with sustainable causes illustrates what the tradition has to offer modern practitioners. The result is a pensive pagan outing that will appeal to nonbelievers. ~ Publishers Weekly
From the start I was drawn in by Townsend’s friendly tone and nonjudgmental style. She showed her own failings and made it clear that it is normal to be drawn into the cycle of consumerism in our modern lives. Her story is probably at least a little familiar to most of us. Her struggles are so relatable. Her honesty is refreshing. The second part of the book about connecting with nature and magic was also something that resonated with me. One thing that really hit home for me was to create instead of consume. In an era where we seem to be expected to monetise our hobbies, Townsend talks about creativity as part of life not just as an identity or for profit. The Anti-consumerist Druid is a book that reminds us to embrace creativity and mindfulness over consumerism. To simply do creative things and embrace the everyday joys that life has to offer. Personally, I think this book has inspired me to be more mindful of what I consume and how it affects me and those around me. It has reminded me of the importance of real connection and to become the person we want instead of just trying to build a personality through consumption and social media. 5 Stars. ~ Laura Morrigan, https://lauramorrigan.blogspot.com/2022/01/the-anti-consumerist-druid.html
The Anti-consumerist Druid is very thought provoking and I personally want to make some changes... I honestly hadn’t put much thought into an earth-friendly, pagan way of thinking of shopping previously. The writing style is down to earth and you feel as you are having a chat with a friend at a local café. The book is intimate and compelling and several times I saw myself in her pages. This was a good read and I enjoyed the memoir-style approach the book took. ~ Amber Barnes, Facing North, http://facingnorth.net/books/lifestyle/anti-consumer
Townsend’s writing style is inviting from the get-go. She comes across as friendly and non-judgmental and manages to dip her tales of woe into a healthy dose of humour. Her openness about not only the ups, but also the often overwhelming downs of her quest makes it virtually impossible not to sympathise with her. Despite the perhaps somewhat unconventional subject matter, there is nothing too woolly about Townsend’s prose. She comes across as delightfully down-to-earth and also provides insight into her own bouts of scepticism, making her all the more relatable. The Anti-Consumerist Druid differs from most other anti-consumerist books in that it does not promise to change your life: it will not make you impulsively throw out half your possessions and create a brand new budgeting spreadsheet, inevitably resulting in a ‘new and improved you’. On the contrary, Townsend acknowledges that change doesn’t happen overnight because human behaviour is far more complicated than that. Instead, she warmly invites the reader to be more mindful about their daily habits. Townsend’s path may not be one-size-fits-all but it does offer far more nuance than your average self-help guide. It’s also a delightful read to boot. ~ Saskia Creten, https://graveyardpicnic585853550.wordpress.com/
Townsend’s telling of her journey shares her successes, her slip ups, and the ways she went a little far is something that many people would be afraid to acknowledge for themselves let alone share with another person, let alone publish in a book. The author’s bravery to share her journey and process is refreshing, encouraging, and inspiring for anyone who has difficulty cutting out detrimental habits from their lives. Townsend also takes the reader through the first couple years of learning about Druidry. Again, the author shares the moments when she hoped for feeling of connection to spirituality but wasn’t met with the picture perfect moments we see in the media, which is an honest reminder that our connection to the divine isn’t always going to be something we feel. I recommend it to anyone who is trying to better understand consumerism, capitalism, and activism, especially if you find it difficult at times to move away from the habits that entrap you. ~ Pagan Pages, https://paganpages.org/emagazine/2022/12/01/book-review-16-2/
Katrina Townsend's experience of navigating from a consumerist world into one that enters the realms of spirituality is beautifully expressed in this book. Her writing is open and honest, humorous and thought-provoking and takes you along the journey to where one can find peace in both the self and the world. It's an ongoing process, as she demonstrates so well in this book, of reviewing and reflecting upon one's habits and, for some, addiction, and being able to come out with a real sense of breaking the cycle of wanting more, through learning to love what you have. In this we find spirituality, expressed in this book through the tradition of Druidry and its love of nature which guides us to live our lives according to that love. I highly recommend this book to everyone, Druids and Pagans, and people of all faiths and none. ~ Joanna van der Hoeven, Director of Druid College and author of several books including The Book of Hedge Druidry and The Hedge Druid's Craft
An insightful personal journey that highlights the paradox of being a Druid in the modern era. Without lecturing us, it gives a useful pathway to integrating Druidic wisdom and practice into our daily lives in a meaningful and permanent way. Walking your talk is as important now as ever, in our current times and this book helps us to achieve that with both integrity and practicality. ~ Luke Eastwood, author of How To Save The Planet and The Druid Garden
The way Katrina writes is relatable and motivational, effortlessly mixing the spiritual with a humorous take on the more mundane aspects of life and showing how they’re more connected than we might think. The book gave me a real sense of 'I can do this too'. It was engaging and felt like sitting down for tea and a chat with a good friend - I truly and thoroughly enjoyed it. ~ Isabelle Alexandra Louise, Tarot reader, artist and sustainable fashion designer at Clove and Moon
I really enjoyed the journey Katrina takes us on - through her re-discovery of paganism and her relationship to community after taking a conscious step back from mindless consumerism. Her initial decision to take a spending break took on a life of its own, eventually evolving into a more informed way of looking at the world outside of her doorstep, deepening her relationships with her loved ones, and rekindling her spiritual relationship with the land she lives on. I definitely think one of the best parts was being reminded of that infinite feeling of discovery at your fingertips that paganism can provide when you're starting out on your journey in earnest. It's something we can lose sight of over time, and it feels like a much needed breath of fresh air as Katrina takes us along on her spiritual discovery culminating in a tangible relationship to her matron goddess. ~ Trinidy Patterson, proprietor of the HedgeWitch Haus, Occult writer, and Herbalist
This is excellent. The writing style is reader friendly and accessible and it draws the reader in almost in a story-telling way. As always, anything coming from personal experience carries authority and weight. It's also a subject which is very relevant to the pressures of modern society. ~ Krystina Sypniewski
Katrina Townsend's journey from hedonistic consumerism to a deep communion with nature makes for a fascinating and compelling read. She writes with engaging honesty as well as humour, delving into the wisdom and magic of our Celtic past to find her own truth in the modern world. Her story will resonate with anyone who has found solace in walking England's green lanes, or glimpsed an older reality in the contours of hill and hedgerow. ~ Jill Todd, author of Echo of Bells