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Subscribe to this list via RSS Blog posts tagged in Beltane

Posted by on in SageWoman Blogs
Bring on the Blackthorn!

This wild and weird winter. It has been coldier and snowier than usual in Ireland. And what snow we got was POWDER, instead of the wet stuff that automatically turns our lane into an ice rink. Normally, winter is - should be, OUGHT to be - a time of going within and hibernation. But not the winter of 2018! This first quarter has rocketed. It has jetted through time zones and international datelines.

That's a metaphor actually. I have strayed no further than county Mayo at March New Moon. It's just been very, very busy.

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Sabbat Incense: Beltane

Beltane is right around the corner, so this is a great time to make some incense for your Beltane celebration.  Here’s a fun recipe that’s easy to roll and could be the perfect companion to your Beltane rites.  While Beltane is strongly associated with fertility, remember that fertility is about more than sexual reproduction.  It is also about bringing new ideas and plans to fruition.  It’s about moving from planning something to bringing that project to life.

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Hurray Hurray

 Hurray, hurray, the First of May:

outdoor f**king begins today.

 

Imagine: you live, in what is essentially a one-room house, along with your spouse, your kids, your parents, grandma, and an unmarried sibling or two.

Maybe even the cow.

All winter long you've been stuck in there with them all.

The whole smokey, stinky, crowded winter, with nary a moment of privacy.

Finally, after all those months, it's—almost—warm enough to slip off to the woods for some long-awaited quality time and a little surreptitious love-making.

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Posted by on in SageWoman Blogs
Beltane Rites and Lore

Beltane is the start of summer, at the opposite end of the Wheel of the Year to Samhain, Summer's End. Cattle would be brought to the higher ground and summer pastures, tended by the women and children while the men would work the farms. In Irish Gaelic it is Beltaine, in Welsh it is Calan Mai, and in Scottish Gaelic Bealtainn. It is the other time when the veils between the worlds are thin, and the Fair Folk can be seen wandering the land in abundance. By the calendar, Beltane begins at dusk on the 30th April and runs to dusk on the 1 May. If celebrating by the local flora, it is when the hawthorn, or May is out in flower. In the UK, the first weekend in May is still celebrated with a bank holiday, perhaps as a remnant of this very important Celtic Festival.

Fire is an important part of this festival, for Beltane is often translated as "the fires of Bel", who was a sun deity. All household fires were extinguished on the eve of Beltane, and then fires were lit on hilltops at dawn, similar to but in reverse at Samhain, where fires were lit at sunset.[1] It was important to not give away any fire from your household at Beltane, for your luck would soon run out. In Ireland, the focus on fire and hilltops shifted from Tlachtga and Tara to Uisnech.  It is said that the first Beltane fire was lit at Uisnech by the Druid, Mide, whose name means "the centre". Beltane is a hinge for the world to open and change, as at Samhain. [2] In Scotland and Wales, the Beltane bonfires were made from nine woods collected and put together by nine men, and called "needfires". [3] Cattle were driven between two bonfires on this day before heading out to their summer pastures. They were said to pass close enough to the fires so that their hair might be singed. The heat and smoke of the bonfires might have been enough to cause any parasites to fall off the animals that may have taken up residence in the winter quarters. Fire is also an important part of the Beltane ceremonies today, as at Edinburgh with the Beltane Fire Society putting on a spectacular event every year, as previously mentioned.

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Posted by on in SageWoman Blogs

I am the blossom, I am the beemay-2017-124
I am the branch, I am the squirrel
I am the acorn, I am the oak
I am the breath, I am the words
I am the space, I am the fullness
I am the song of the May.

Happy Beltane to all! We brought in the May by the wild, flooded creek and river. I have never seen the water so high and intense! We offered our flower blessings to the churning, deep water, and sang together as we faced the wildly swirling torrents of water, accompanied by its music, awe-inspired at how quickly a landscape can change after several days of heavy rain.

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Eurynome and Holding the Centre of the Dance

Magic happens. I know that absolutely to be true. Magic shows up when you have been running around gathering all the elements needed to prepare your Maypole for a ritual that is going to be happening in 3 days – and you have nothing but Maypole on the brain – and the individual chosen to pull the Goddess card for the focus of this week’s meditation completely randomly chooses Eurynome. As above, so below. There is dance in the air and She showed up to meditate.

There are a few different Eurynomes (or versions of Her story) that show up in mythology. Homer mentions Her as a daughter of the Ocean who nursed Hephaestus, and Hesiod claims She was mother to the Graces.  The Eurynome we met on Wednesday (as presented in The Goddess Oracle by Amy Marashinsky, illustrated by Hrana Janto) is possibly an older iteration that reflects a primordial creation myth. Born out of Chaos and a Titan ruler in Her own right, this Eurynome danced until She created the wind, out of which She fashioned the snake, Orphion.  As she continued Her dance, Orphion was so enamored of Her movements that he was overtaken with lust. The union of Eurynome and Orphion produced the Universal Egg, out of which all the animals and plants of the world are hatched.

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Posted by on in SageWoman Blogs

b2ap3_thumbnail_KimKirkBLOG.jpg

In this season, no matter our age, we embrace our inner youth. This is a good time to journey or quest, learn new skills, practice the balance of self-care and care-giving. We seek the inspiration raging in our guts—our genius—that which is ours alone to manifest. Ask the Maens and Maidens in your life, and within yourself: Beloved, what is it you really Desire?

In May, we honor the pattern that replicates itself in the seasons, the waxing and waning moon, the ebb and flow of ocean, and in the bodies of Women. We respond to both sunlight and moonlight through magical science of hormones and the pineal gland—"the seat of the soul." Our hormones dance and flow in synch with these large forces of nature. This cycling is a built-in mechanism for renewing mental and physical health, taking us inward and outward, to release what no longer serves us.

Archaeology and anthropology teach us that menstruation was central to the development of human civilizations: Women responded to their Blood Cycle by going within to listen then coming out to share with their tribes what they experienced in their monthly "vision quest." This sharing was not about reproduction, but another creation of the whole universe. I ask women to sit with this remembering. There is science involved in this magic, but it is magic first.


...We become She Who Cycles. Now that is something to tell a young woman on the day of her First Bloods! 

Kim Duckett © Mother Tongue Ink 2016

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  • Erin Lale
    Erin Lale says #
    I love that artwork!

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