Sunset to Sunset.
Beltane honours Life. It represents the peak of Spring and the beginning of Summer. Earth energies are at their strongest and most active. All of life is bursting with potent fertility and at this point in the Wheel of the Year, the potential becomes conception. On May Eve the sexuality of life and the earth is at its peak. Abundant fertility, on all levels, is the central theme. The Maiden goddess has reached her fullness. She is the manifestation of growth and renewal, Flora, the Goddess of Spring, the May Queen, the May Bride. The Young Oak King, as Jack-In-The-Green, as the Green Man, falls in love with her and wins her hand. The union is consummated and the May Queen becomes pregnant. Together the May Queen and the May King are symbols of the Sacred Marriage (or Heiros Gamos), the union of Earth and Sky, and this union has merrily been re-enacted by humans throughout the centuries. For this is the night of the Greenwood Marriage. It is about sexuality and sensuality, passion, vitality and joy. And about conception. A brilliant moment in the Wheel of the Year to bring ideas, hopes and dreams into action. And have some fun…..
Traditions of Beltane
Beltane is a Fire Festival. The word ‘Beltane’ originates from the Celtic God ‘Bel’, meaning ‘the bright one’ and the Gaelic word ‘teine’ meaning fire. Together they make ‘Bright Fire’, or ‘Goodly Fire’ and traditionally bonfires were lit to honour the Sun and encourage the support of Bel and the Sun’s light to nurture the emerging future harvest and protect the community. Bel had to be won over through human effort. Traditionally all fires in the community were put out and a special fire was kindled for Beltane. “This was the Tein-eigen, the need fire. People jumped the fire to purify, cleanse and to bring fertility. Couples jumped the fire together to pledge themselves to each other. Cattle and other animals were driven through the smoke as a protection from disease and to bring fertility. At the end of the evening, the villagers would take some of the Teineigen to start their fires anew.” (From Sacred Celebrations by Glennie Kindred) Green Man – Beltane
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Beltane Magic [Part 5]
Mention graveyard dirt in a magical context, and chances are good you’ll get a lot of strange looks or questions. After all, it sounds a bit creepy, right? Who in their right mind goes around scooping up soil out of cemeteries? Well, believe it or not, a lot of people. The use of graveyard dirt isn’t all that odd in many magical traditions. Let’s take a look at some of the ways it can be used. More »
By Patti Wigington
[There is a lot of information in this post including crafts and recipes]
April’s showers have given way to rich and fertile earth, and as the land greens, there are few celebrations as representative of fertility as Beltane. Observed on May 1st (or October 31 – November 1 for our Southern Hemisphere readers), festivities typically begin the evening before, on the last night of April. It’s a time to welcome the abundance of the fertile earth, and a day that has a long (and sometimes scandalous) history. Depending on your tradition, there are a number of ways you can celebrate this Sabbat. First, you might want to read up on:
Depending on your particular tradition, there are many different ways you can celebrate Beltane, but the focus is nearly always on fertility. It’s the time when the earth mother opens up to the fertility god, and their union brings about healthy livestock, strong crops, and new life all around.
Here are a few rituals you may want to think about trying — and remember, any of them can be adapted for either a solitary practitioner or a small group, with just a little planning ahead.
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Interested in learning about some of the traditions behind the celebrations of May Day? Learn why the Romans had a big party, and who the popular fertility gods are.
Beltane is a season of fertility and fire, and we often find this reflected in the magic of the season. Let’s look at some of that spring magic, from ritual sex to fertility magic, along with the magic found in gardens and nature.
As Beltane approaches, you can decorate your home (and keep your kids entertained) with a number of easy craft projects. Start celebrating a bit early with fun floral crowns and a Maypole altar centerpiece.
No Pagan celebration is really complete without a meal to go along with it. For Beltane, celebrate with foods that honor fertility of the earth. Enjoy light spring soups, Scottish bannocks, fertility bread loaves, and more.
QUICK SPELL Find a quiet, comfortable place where you will not be disturbed. You will need the following items: one red candle, one green candle, almond oil and jasmine incense, a pen and your Book of Shadows. Use the oil to anoint the candles and your forehead. Sit silently for a few moments and then ask the Goddess to guide your meditation. Light the red candle and say: May the goddess Flora bring me everlasting love and companionship. So mote it
Perform the following meditation: It is May. Picture yourself sitting on a hilltop and surveying the land around you. Flowers are in full bloom, birds are singing and a soft breeze wafts across the meadow bringing with it the scent of lilacs, roses and lily of the valley. The fragrance is so intoxicating that you feel your senses heightened to the point of superhuman ability. The happenings in the extreme distance seem like only a few yards away and you are part of them.
What do you see – you and your loving partner or, if you are single, the partner of your dreams? Breathe deeply and bring this colourful picture closer and brighter. Enjoy. Then move to the next scene – you partaking in a creative endeavour you have been aching to try. Breathe deeply and bring the colourful vision closer and brighter. Concentrate. Now look again and see the final scene. What do you see – love, success, happy pastimes? Breathe deeply and bring the picture closer and into colourful focus. Release it, give thanks and return to the present. Write the details of your visualization in your Book of Shadows and read it daily for inspiration.
Zurich, Holly (2011-02-21). Simple Wiccan Magick Spells and Ritual Ceremony (Kindle Locations 919-924). Amazon.com. Kindle Edition.