An ADF Druid's trials, tribulations, musings, and victories

Posts tagged ‘Spring Equinox’

Spring Equinox Blessings!

Today I celebrated the Equinox with my husband.  The people we had invited to the ritual were unable to come, so we celebrated on our own.

Here is our altar and fire for the ritual:

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On the altar are seeds and seedlings to be blessed, as well as my Sun Goddess circlet, offerings of bread, thyme, and eggs, and my rune bag.

Once the ritual began, I called upon the Keepers of Time and Place to transport us to a time outside of time and a place outside of place.  I offered them some incense that I had blended especially for the ritual.  Next we called upon the Nature Spirits, the Earth Mother, and the Deities of Fertility to be present for the ritual.  Then we offered praise and physical offerings to each being.  We offered thyme to the Nature Spirits, bread to the Earth Mother, and hard boiled eggs for the Deities of Fertility.

Here’s the Omen pulled when we asked what blessings were offered:

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The first rune on the left is Ehwaz, which is the partnership rune.  In the middle is Laguz, water and life.  The rune on the right is Fehu, the wealth and growth rune.  Laguz and Fehu are especially appropriate for this rite.  Overall I consider the omen to be very positive and reinforcing.

Next was the seed and sprout blessing, which used these words:

Nature Spirits, Earth Mother, Deities of Fertility…we ask you to bless these seeds and sprouts with your abundance and life.  May they all grow strong and tall.  May they nourish our hearts and souls with their gifts

We then said farewell to all the beings we invited to be present, including the Keepers of Time and Place.  We closed the ritual by saying:  We have come together to celebrate the Earth Mother’s awakening.  As we return to our daily lives, may we carry respect for Her and all of Nature forever in our hearts.  Blessed be!

It was a simple ritual, but it was beautiful in its simplicity.

Blessings of Abundance and Fertility to each of you!

Rosemary

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F – Fertility (continued)

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After some Internet problems last week, I am finally posting my continuation of the discussion of Fertility from the previous week!

Fertility is especially important around the Spring Equinox, which we just celebrated! Signs of the Earth Mother’s fertility are everywhere.  Just look at the daffodils and crocuses blooming, the trees budding, and the fascination with eggs and rabbits this time of year.

Fertility is basically an ability to create.  This can be biological creation or imaginative creation.  When we create, though, it’s important to remember that something else dies so the creation can be realized.  If we sculpt something out of a block of clay, we will create a sculpture.  However, we no longer have the block of clay.  If we write something on paper, the blank page must “die” so that we can have a page with writing on it.  In terms of (human) biological creation, the individual unfertilized egg dies (as does the sperm) to result in a fertilized egg!

Just some food for thought.  🙂

Spring Equinox omen interpretation

An explanation of the basics of Magic: The Gathering can be found here, and the reflection about the entire rite can be found here.

We simply used the colors and the flavor text on the cards to determine what the omens were.  We drew three white and three black.

The first pair of cards, both black, represented the omen from the Ancestors.  The one I drew read:  “Everyone knew the Kimir had done the damage.  Everyone suspected Izzet had hired them.” (proper nouns refer to characters, factions, etc. in the MTG mythos)  The card Craig (my fiance) drew read:  It took ninety-nine monks to weave the spell that trapped Yukura.  Upon the death of the ninety-nine, the spell was broken, and the demon returned to the mortal world seeking vengeance for its imprisonment.”

Craig pointed out that with the passing of one thing, another comes–but its not always something good.  He also interprets this omen to be speaking of damage done and something (or someone) wanting to cause harm.  It could be a warning.  I personally interpreted this pair of cards, once drawn, as a negative omen and that someone didn’t like the ritual.

The second omen, from the Nature Spirits, consisted of two white cards.  The one I drew read:  “Ravnicans still tell tales about the Battle of Sumala where four Selesnya sentries held off an entire clan of Gruul warriors.”  His read:  “All over the Razor Fields, White Sun is celebrated.  Even the followers of the Rebel Juryan, far from the Cave of Light, bow their heads in reverence.”

Craig thinks this omen refers to respecting and revering beings or a place.  It also talks about something held sacred.  It may be telling us that we need to respect something or show more respect to something.

The final omen, from the Shining Ones, consisted of a white card and a black card.  I drew the white card, which said:  “It did not escape the ambassador’s notice that the sound of war drums could also marshal the city to attention.”  Craig drew the black card which read:  “The touch of his madness can drive anyone into a killing frenzy.”

This omen by itself could refer to the first pair of cards.  It also seems to be telling us to pay attention to the sounds of warning, for danger can come from anywhere.

The equal number of white and black cards drawn is of importance.  It reflects the Equinox itself, that night and day are of equal length.  Also, it could be referring to the lighthearted nature of the ritual.  Perhaps this needs to be balanced with more seriousness.

Taken all together, the Omens reveal a pattern of danger, respect, and warning.  I think the Kindreds weren’t pleased with our first attempt at a whimsical ritual.  It probably didn’t help that I forgot to thank Idunna for her attendance.  That could be perceived as a lack of respect, which could result in danger.  The lesson we’ve learned is to balance whimsy and seriousness in future rituals.  I’ve also learned the lesson to not forget to thank the Being I have invited for the High Day!

A whimsical Spring Equinox ritual (reflection)

The ritual outline I used can be found here.

Before the ritual, my fiance and I goofed around a little bit to get in the mood for the ritual.  We started the ritual with some very simple words welcoming the Kindreds.  (We didn’t record the ritual, so I have no idea what exact words were said.)

For purification (step 2 of the outline), we burned some lavender blossoms and smudged each other.  When we honored the Earth Mother, we both said some words thanking her for sustaining us and providing us space to live our lives.

Step 4 consisted of just stating why we were performing the ritual:  to celebrate the Spring Equinox.  We also took care to mention that we were honoring Idunna and that Heimdall would open the Gates for us.

We offered a frankincense cone to our “fire pot,” which consisted of a lit charcoal disk and candle stubs that were lit.  The stubs and charcoal created a nice big flame.  We offered a dime to the Well, and sprinkled and censed the Tree (pinecone on top of a pillar candle holder).  “Cense” actually isn’t the right word here.  We couldn’t get the smoke from the Fire fanned over the tree, so my fiance picked up the pinecone and waved it around in the smoke.

Once the Center of Fire, Well, and Tree had been established, I asked Heimdall to join us and help us open the Gates.  I poured some mead into the offering bowl.  My fiance then opened the Gates.  He also called to the Ancestors immediately after with an offering of hot chocolate (to the offering bowl) and the ringing of a bell.

Next I called to the Nature Spirits to join the ritual.  I dipped my fingers in the bowl of dish soap mixed with water and flung some suds into the air.  Their offering was a handful of Starburst jellybeans into the bowl.

I also invoked the Shining Ones, but I forgot to ring the bell.  I poured a bit of the mead into the bowl at first, then my fiance realized we should pour it in the Fire.  He did so, making the flames turn reddish-orange and grow larger for a few moments before fizzling out completely.  The next couple minutes were spent trying to get the fire going again, which we managed to do.

I also invoked Idunna, the Norse Goddess of Rejuvenation.  I thanked her for allowing the Earth Mother to have one of her apples of youth so spring could return.  We offered her a Reese’s egg that we had cut into pieces before the ritual.  We put this and all subsequent offerings into the bowl so the Fire wouldn’t go out again!

Finally, I thanked Freyja for being my Patron and thus offering guidance and strength.  I offered a bit of mead to her as well.

We took the Omens using cards from the game Magic:  The Gathering.  My fiance grabbed a stack, shuffled them a bit, then fanned them out and asked me to pick a card.  I did so, then he drew a card himself.  We repeated this two more times for a total of six cards.  The cards themselves and our interpretation of the Omen will be in a subsequent post to avoid making this one terribly long.

We asked to be given the blessings of the Omen into our cups full of milk.  I consecrated them and then we drank.  We thanked the Kindreds in the order we had invited them, though I now realize I forgot to thank Idunna.

I closed the gates and thanked Heimdall, and my fiance thanked the Earth Mother.  We ended with a simple statement like, “The rite is over!”

Overall we had a lot of fun.  I did think that the fire going out might have been a bad sign.  Looking back, it is possible that it was, as you’ll see with the next post.  I enjoyed trying something different and light-hearted.

A whimsical Spring Equinox ritual

Continuing with my theme of whimsy and enchantment, here is an outline for the Spring Equinox ritual my fiance and I will perform sometime in the next couple weeks.  We will not use these words exactly; they are simply to help set the tone for the ritual.  We will speak from the heart.

Outline:

  1. Start the ritual!
  2. Make everything clean and shiny!  Don’t forget to ground!
  3. Love the Earth Mother!
  4. Why are we doing this?
  5. Make the center of the ritual with Fire, Well, and Tree!
  6. Hemdall, let us in!  (offer mead)
  7. Love the Ancestors! (offer hot chocolate & ring bell wildly)
  8. Love the Nature Spirits! (offer jellybeans & blow bubbles)
  9. Love the Shining Ones! (offer mead & ring bell wildly)
  10. Love Idunna, the Rejuvenating One! (offer Reese’s egg)
  11. Love Freyja with praise, since She is my Patron!
  12. Make final offering of mead!
  13. What blessings are offered? (take Omen with cards)
  14. Please give us Your blessings!
  15. Behold the Waters of Life!
  16. We accept the blessings! (drink Waters; for me they will be mead)
  17. Time for magic, if there is any!
  18. Thanks Shining Ones!
  19. Thanks Nature Spirits!
  20. Thanks Ancestors!
  21. Heimdall, shut the door behind us as we leave!
  22. Thanks Earth Mother!
  23. The ritual is over!

I am excited to try this new spin on ritual.  It will inject some much needed fun into my Druidry and make it seem much less like work.  I am a little nervous to see what the Kindreds will think (especially Idunna and Freyja), but hopefully They will have a sense of humor.

Some people may scoff at this outline and state that this can’t possibly work as a “real” ritual.  I say to these people, “Don’t confuse humor for insincerity.”  I see humor as a way to relax and allow my true self to come through, which is goofy and silly.  If that is not sincere, then I don’t know what is.  I think the Kindreds will appreciate me feeling relaxed around Them.

Blessings, Victoria

 

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