Edited question and my edited answer
> Interesting stuff all round, am I to learn that druidic (lunar) timekeeping would be marked by the (first) dark moon nearest the time rather than a fixed 31st of october date mark which is distorted by gregorian (solar) calendars anyway.<
For many thousands of years - the Star Antares at 10* Scorpio, the Sun, Dark Moon, Lambay Volcano, the passage at Cairn 'L' all line up to the Quartz standing stone inside the actual Cairn for the start of the Celtic New Year. This year its on the 22nd of Oct 06. The synthetic calendar was only adopted in England in the 1800's.....
In reply to your question I offer part of an email from a druidschool member who attended a Caer Clud gathering in Glasgow last year -
1) Since your presentation in Scotland last year about the "natural time", I have been asking myself if a similar system had existed in other places on the continent. However, after looking around a few sites in the region (without any indication to confirm this theory), I had a very different vision. Could it be that all the sites over here had been tuned in on the "great clock" in Ireland? Certain leyhunters and dowsers claim a link between the sites (mainly standing stones) is possible and from my point of view it would have been so much more practical. I am very interested in your opinion on this. The question is also, if a link is possible, how could we reactivate it today? Do I need to buy a didgeridoo? ...LOL... Maybe this could be a way to increase/harmonise energy levels at Tara and to connect up people abroad.
(from my own work) 2)
Great Celtic Cycle of Time Year 2
(Dark Moon at 10* Scorpio)
Sunday 22 October - Start of the Celtic New Year at about 4am before Sunrise on Monday. Water Ceremony at Tobar Tlachtga 4pm, Fire Ceremony with pure new flame at sunset on Tlachtga, second fire on Tara about 8ish and 12 midnight third fire on third sacred site at the Hill of the Witches / Sliabh na Callighe.
This year we are 9 days before the Catholic celebration of Halloween as we celebrate the Pagan New Year with the Dark Moon aligning over Lambay Volcano to the Quartz Standing Stone inside Cairn 'L' at the Hill of the Witches / Sliabh na Callighe.
This is the closest new or Dark Moon on the 22nd of October to the Solar alignment at 10* of Scorpio . Two days or 44 hours after the Dark Moon is at 10* of Scorpio on the 22nd of October - we have the Sun, Venus and Mars at 0* and Mercury at 24* and Jupiter at 23* of Scorpio.
In 2005 we had the Sun and Moon make a perfect alignment at 10* of Scorpio on Wednesday the 2nd of November triggering a Great Cycle of Celtic Time. But for 2006 we have a huge family gathering of Sun, Mercury, Venus, Mars and Jupiter just after the Moon (dark) moves over 10* of Scorpio. Simply put there will be six heavenly bodies in the one sign on this day. This represents all of the fast or inner planets or the conscious fore brain. A very powerful start to the second New Year of this New Celtic Cycle of Time. More details at http://www.druidschool.com/site/1030100/page/761463
3) After the Council of Nicea (Turkey) in CE 325 - most Christians agreed that Easter should first have a Fast, with some connection to the Full Moon that falls in the Jewish month of Nisan. But there was a dislike by Christians to setting a date based on calculations by Jewish priests. It was
decided to link Christ's resurrection to the solar year and to Caesar's calendar by using the spring equinox to anchor a date to celebrate Easter. This means that Easter will fall on the first Sunday after the Full Moon after the Equinox but not on the start of the Jewish Passover. But Caesar's calendar was off by 11 minutes each year, which means loosing one full day every 128 years. This is false time - which disconnects us from true sidereal time. Modern day Catholic Astronomers (who are aware of true time i.e. sidereal time) have devised the following 14-step algorithm - more at http://www.druidschool.com/site/1030100/page/471149
4) This discovery shows the true times for celebrating the Eightfold year of our ancestors. The witches, shamans, druids and wizards of ancient Ireland held ritual ceremony on the solar and the lunar positions as shown on the map. The current popular calendar is a catholic construct and bears no relationship to the actual timing of the solar and lunar alignments. This was due to a deliberate displacement and dis-empowerment strategy that was designed to disconnect us from the energies of the God and Goddess and the old ways. Now, with this discovery, the wheel has turned full circle and we may acknowledge and link with the God and Goddess of Light once again at the proper times and appropriate temples while looking in the correct direction.
more at http://www.druidschool.com/site/1030100/page/472352
5) In Ireland there are three Samhains each year - Catholic Samhain, Lunar Samhain and Solar Samhain. An explanation is needed, as the reality of time control / distortion by the Church of fear is undone. Catholic Samhain is one of those phrases like 'political honesty' or 'military intelligence' in that none of these pairs of words sit together easily. Catholic does not honour Samhain as it is the main festival of the Celt and the Roman Church sought to eradicate this way of spirituality since it got the upper hand. But, the native traditions of Ireland were not fully wiped out by the Church and they have begun to re-emerge once again. The problem is that the Church
has twisted the calendar and now many people seek to celebrate Catholic Samhain on the Friday or Saturday nearest to the 31st October or 1st of November. This is the grass roots re-emergence of our native traditions and is not to be shunned or attacked in any way - but their mistake on timing must be acknowledged so that it may be corrected..
more at http://www.druidschool.com/site/1030100/page/587337
I offer the above as I know that there are over 200 pages on my website and it may be difficult to find the answers to your question without reaching information overload. It may be best to print out the info from each link for your gathering to peruse. I can offer the above mentioned as a lecture - see http://www.druidschool.com/site/1030100/page/632871