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Merry Meet Legionnaires~
I am sixth generation Native Blackfoot and Scottish Celt. My Grandmother was one of my mentors her being a shaman, and my other mentor was my Druid Celtic Aunt. I was raised pagan and my education started at the age
of seven and formally after my first moon lodge ritual at 12. I am also trained as a voodoo priestess
I have one son now coming into his native shaman training and 4 beautiful grandchildren.

Beltane~

Beltane is a festival of flowers, fertility, sensuality, and delight.


On Beltane Eve fires are lit on hillsides to welcome the summer and to ensure a bountiful harvest and fertility for the clan. Druids would lead the people and animals between the fires as a purification ritual. Many would jump over the fire or circle it three times to honor the Horned God.

Couples would often pair up and spend the night together in the greening woods on this night when time stands still and the veil between the worlds is the thinnest 1. Marriage vows were suspended for the month of May commencing again on June 1st as June brides once again.

In the morning the revelers would return to the village where they would be given breakfast by those who had remained behind.

 

[Green Man Horned God] Daytime celebrations included the dance of the Maypole which represents the Phallus of the Horned God within the Earth Goddess. [Maypole] After the dance, couples would retire to the new-plowed fields to again make love to ensure the fertility of the land.

Beltane (pronounced bell tane) is the cross-quarter celebration falling halfway between Ostara, on the Spring Equinox and MidSummer's Eve, on the Summer Solstice. It is celebrated on Mayday, May 1st, to as late as May twelfth or the night of the full moon nearest May 1st. 2

Beltane rites:

[Flower Basket for Beltane] Prepare a May basket by filling it with flowers and goodwill and then give it to someone in need of healing and caring, such as a shut-in or elderly friend. Form a wreath of freshly picked flowers, wear it in your hair, and feel yourself radiating joy and beauty. Dress in bright colors. Dance the [Dancing the Maypole] Maypole and feel yourself balancing the Divine Female and Male within. On May Eve, bless your garden in the old way by making love with your lover in it. Make a wish as you jump a bonfire or candle flame for good luck. Welcome in the May at dawn with singing and dancing.

 

 

Beltane Recipes:

Beltane Cake Ritual and Recipe:

This is a Scottish Beltane custom. A knobby cake made with oats or barley, milk and eggs is baked in a round shape. The group stands in a circle facing the Bel fire. As they pass the cake each breaks off a knob or piece and throws it over their shoulder saying "This I give to thee ______(naming an elemental spirit of preservation or destruction). Preserve my ______." An example from the old days is "This I give to thee O Fox Preserve my chickens." Today one might say, "This I give to you economy. Preserve my bank account." Here are a couple of versions of Beltane cake, based on oats, milk and eggs. I have successfully substituted Rice Dream and soy margarine for a dairy-free version. Also since Beltane is a festival of Belenus a Sun God, and a celebration of the rites of love, I use cinnamon, ginger and cloves. 

Cinnamon is associated with the Sun and has long been used in love spells. Cloves are also popular in love spells. Ginger is associated with the Moon and has been used to win the affection of women. Thus as the Goddess and God come together at Beltane, so the Sun and Moon are joined in the cake. 

Beltane Cake I 
In a saucepan, heat 1 1/2 cups of milk with 1-cup oats, 1/2 cup butter and 1/2 tsp. sea salt. Cook until thickened. Let stand until room temperature. Mix in 2 cups brown sugar, 2 eggs and 1 tsp. vanilla. Add 1 1/3 cup unbleached white flour, 1 tsp. baking soda, tsp. Cinnamon, 1/4 tsp. Ginger and 1/2 tsp. cloves. Bake in a well-greased 9X13 pan at 350 degrees for 30 minutes or until a wooden toothpick inserted in center comes up clean. Top of cake may be decorated with powdered sugar. This cake is even better if baked the day before it is eaten. After cooling to room temperature cover tightly until serving. 

Beltane Cake II 
Heat oven to 350 degrees. In a 9" round skillet melt 1/2 cup butter. Mix in a bowl 2/3 cup oats, 1 cup flour, 1 tbs. sugar, 1/2 tsp. ginger, 1/2 tsp. cinnamon, 1/2 tsp. cloves, 1/2 tsp. salt and 1/2 tsp. baking powder. Stir 2/3 cup molasses into the butter and add to the flour mixture alternately with 2/3 cup milk. Do not over mix. Bake for approximately 35 minutes until it pulls away from the edge of the pan.


[Beltane Wine Celebration]
May Wine recipe: 
Choose a light German white wine, the younger the better. 
You don't want to spend much on this wine. Pour into a bowl. 
Add a half-ounce of dried sweet woodruff 
(or four or five freshly dried sprigs) 
and a couple of tablespoons of sugar, if you like. 
Cover it. 
Let it rest in the refrigerator overnight 
so the wine is infused with the herb's essence. 
Strain out the herb. 
Place the wine in a punch bowl, add strawberries and serve cold. 

 

1. The other night when the veil between the worlds is thinnest is Samhain (Halloween)
2. This is because of the repositioning of the first day in May in the Gregorian Calendar which is no longer equal distance between the Equinox and the Solstice. In addition, all cross-quarter celebrations are at least three nights.

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Beltane, May Day, Food Recipes

 

   by Raven and Crone

ASPARAGUS WITH CHIVES AND BLOSSOMS 
 
1 pound Asparagus, washed
1 Tablespoon Olive oil
1 Tablespoon Sesame Seeds
2 Tablespoons Fresh Chives, snipped
16 Chive Blossoms
1/2 teaspoon Soy Sauce
Salt and Pepper to taste

Blanch the asparagus in lightly salted boiling water for about 3 minutes or until crisp-tender; do not overcook. Refresh under very cold water and drain well. Remove the chive stalks to separate the flowers. In a skillet, heat the oil over medium heat and add the sesame seed. Stir for 1 minute, add the snipped chives, and stir for 1 minute more. Add the asparagus and soy sauce to the skillet with a few pinches of salt and generous grindings of pepper; stir well, cover, and cook for a minute or so. Remove the lid, sprinkle the chive blooms over the asparagus, and cover for 1 to 2 minutes so that the chive blooms steam briefly. Stir lightly and taste for seasoning. Serve hot. Comments: Bright lavender chive blossoms begin to bloom in the garden about the time the asparagus bed is at its peak. Hence, this is a natural combination and a simply tasty dish. Since chive blossoms are so strong in flavor, add them at the last minute in this recipe. Source: FLOWERS IN THE KITCHEN by Susan Belsinger

CHICKEN BARLEY STEW WITH HERBS 
 
2-3 LB chicken breasts on the bone
2 Tablespoons Butter 
1 LB leeks (3-4 large ones, 4-5 little ones) thickly cut. May substitute onions 
4 cloves garlic, chopped fine
6 oz barley 
3 Tablespoons red wine vinegar
3 3/4 cups water
2 bay leaves
1 Tablespoon dried sage

Comment: This is originally an Anglo-Saxon recipe. The original calls for rabbit, but chicken is just as good. 
In a large Dutch Oven, melt the butter, then fry the leeks and garlic in the butter. Add the chicken and brown. Add remaining ingredients, reserving the sage. Bring to a boil, then reduce and simmer for 1 to 1-1/2 hours. Remove chicken from pot and let cool. Remove meat from bones and add back to the pot. Add sage. Stir well and serve. Serves 8

MEDALLIONS OF PORK WITH RIESLING SAUCE 
 
12 ounces Pork tenderloin, cut into 1" rounds
Flour
4 Tablespoons Unsalted butter
1 Onion, thinly sliced
3 Garlic cloves, minced
1/2 cup Dry Riesling wine
1/2 cup Raisins
3 Tablespoons Balsamic vinegar
1 Tablespoon Green peppercorns, ground
1/2 teaspoon thyme, minced
1/2 teaspoon oregano, minced
1/4 cup butter, chilled & cut into pieces
1/4 cup Pine nuts, toasted

Season pork with salt and pepper. Coat in flour; shake off excess. Melt 2 Tablespoons butter in heavy skillet over medium-high heat. Add onion and garlic and sauté until golden brown, about 5 minutes. Transfer mixture to bowl. Melt remaining 2 Tablespoons butter in same skillet over medium-high heat. Add pork and sauté about 4 minutes per side. Transfer pork to plate; tent with foil to keep warm. Add onion mixture, wine, green peppercorns and herbs to same skillet and boil until sauce thickens, about 4 minutes. Add pork to skillet and heat through. Divide pork among plates. Add 1/4 cup chilled butter to sauce in skillet and whisk just until melted. Mix in pine nuts. Spoon sauce over pork and serve.

Dandelion Salad

1 Dishpan full of young dandelion leaves 
4 Strips of bacon 
1/2 c Sugar 
2 T Flour 
1 ea Egg beaten 
1 t Salt 
1/2 c Vinegar 
1 1/2 c Water 
3 ea Eggs, hard boiled, diced 
Wash, drain, and cut up tender dandelion leaves. Brown bacon; remove drippings and crumble Combine sugar and flour. Add egg, salt, vinegar, and water and mix until smooth. Pour into bacon drippings and heat, stirring constantly until mixture thickens. Pour warm dressing over dandelion. add crumbled bacon and hard boild eggs. Toss lightly and serve immediatly. 
 

Beltane Bread

Preheat oven to 375 degrees, and combine:

4 cups sifted flour
1/2 cup ground almonds
2 cups sugar
1 tube almond paste
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon cinnamon
5 eggs

When dough is worked to medium soft, shape into flattened balls and place on ungreased cookie sheet. Bake until golden brown, about 20 minutes. Cool, ice with white Solar Cross. You could try this as a single loaf. I also like to make an almond biscuit with biscuit mix, almond extract, sugar, cinnamon, and eggs, but in smaller proportions. Source: Ann Moura Aoumiel's book Green Witchcraft: Folk Magic, Fairy Lore & Herb Craft, Llewellyn Publications, 1996

Elder Flower Fritters- Medieval England 
From Wisteria's Faery Recipes

The French use elder flowers to pack apples. They claim that this enhances the flavor.1 egg 
1 cup self-rising flour 
1 teaspoon Rose Water
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon 
1/4 cup honey 
2 cups elder flowers, freshly picked & cleaned 
2 tablespoons brandy 
Mix the egg, rose water, honey, & brandy in a medium sized bowl. Stir in the flour & cinnamon; the batter should resemble slightly thick pancake batter. If the batter is too thin, add a little more flour; if too thick, add more brandy. Fold in the elder flowers. Fry like pancakes or drop by the teaspoon into a deep-fat-fryer until golden brown. Serve with a sprinkling of orange water & fresh lemon, or dip into fresh sweet cream. Yield: About 2 dozen 
Note: If you are not using self-rising flour, add 1 teaspoon baking powder & 1/2 teaspoon salt. Variation: If you can't find elder flowers, substitute 1 cup finely diced apples & a hint of fresh mint for similar magical effects. Magical Attributes: Protection from Faery folk, trust, beauty, energy for attraction, & magical ambience. Can also be eaten on Lammas, St. Valentines Day, or Hallow's Eve.

Fried Honey Cakes
These cakes are not unlike those made on the night before Beltane by women around the turn of the century. These cakes were left in the garden to please Faery visitors.

1/2 cup sweet white wine 
2 tablespoons sugar 
1 egg 
1 cup honey 
2/3 cup flour 
1/8 teaspoon nutmeg 
1/8 teaspoon cinnamon 
Oil for frying 
1/8 teaspoon salt

Beat the wine & egg in a medium bowl. Combine the flour, cinnamon, salt & sugar in a small bowl. Stir into the egg mixture. Let stand 30 minutes. Combine the honey & nutmeg in a small bowl. Heat 1/2-inch of the oil in a frying pan until hot, but not smoking. Drop the batter into the oil 1 tablespoon at a time; fry until golden brown. Drain on paper towels. Dip into the honey. 
Yield: 1 1/2 Dozen.

Wildflower Pound Cake

1 C Butter
1-1/2 C Flour
1 Tsp Vanilla or Lemon Extract
5 Eggs separated
1-1/2 C Powdered Sugar
1 Tsp Baking Powder
1 C Assorted Edible Flower Petals- small pieces

Cream the Butter. Sift flour and add gradually to the butter. Beat the egg yolks until thick and lemon colored, add sugar gradually. Combine mixtures. Beat egg whites until stiff to add to mixture. Sift baking powder over mixture beat thoroughly. Fold in fresh flower pieces. Turn into a buttered deep cake pan, bake one hour at 350 degrees. Note: Garnish with fresh flowers.

Beltane Lemon Curd Mousse Cake

To make the shortbread cookie crumbs for the crust, seal the cookies in a heavy plastic bag and use a rolling pin to crush them into fine crumbs.

Servings: Makes 10 to 12 servings.

Ingredients:

Curd:
2 1/3 cups sugar
4 teaspoons cornstarch
1 cup fresh lemon juice
4 large eggs
4 large egg yolks
1 1/2 sticks unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch cubes

Crust:
Nonstick vegetable oil spray
2 cups shortbread cookie crumbs- about 7 1/2 ounces
1/2 stick unsalted butter, melted

Mousse: 
5 tablespoons water
4 teaspoons unflavored gelatin

6 large egg whites
3/4 cup sugar
1 1/2 cups chilled heavy whipping cream

Lemon slices, cut into quarters for garnish

Preparation:

For curd:
Mix sugar and cornstarch in heavy large saucepan. Gradually add lemon juice, whisking until all cornstarch dissolves. Whisk in eggs and yolks. Add butter. Stir over medium heat until curd thickens and boils, about 12 minutes. Transfer
to medium bowl. Chill until cold, at least 6 hours - Can be made 1 week ahead. Press plastic wrap onto surface of curd and keep chilled.

For crust:
Preheat oven to 350°F. Spray bottom of 8-inch-diameter springform pan with nonstick spray. Blend cookie crumbs and butter in small bowl. Press onto bottom of pan. Bake until golden, about 15 minutes. Cool.

For mousse:
Pour 5 tablespoons water into small saucepan. Sprinkle gelatin evenly over. Let stand until gelatin softens, about 15 minutes.

Meanwhile, place 1 3/4 cups lemon curd in large bowl. Stir 3/4 cup curd in another small saucepan over medium-low heat until very warm.

Stir gelatin mixture over medium-low heat until dissolved and liquid is clear-do not boil. Whisk warm gelatin mixture into 3/4 cup warm curd. Gradually whisk gelatin-curd mixture into curd in large bowl. Using electric mixer, beat egg whites in medium bowl until soft peaks form. Gradually add sugar, beating until whites are thick and glossy. Fold whites into curd mixture in 3 additions. Using same beaters, beat cream in another medium bowl until peaks form. Fold into egg white-curd mixture in 3 additions. Pour enough mousse over cooled crust to fill pan completely. Pour remaining mousse into small bowl and reserve. Cover and chill mousse cake, reserved mousse, and remaining curd overnight.

Using long thin knife, cut around cake to loosen. Remove pan sides. Gently spread 3/4 cup of remaining curd over cake. Transfer reserved mousse to pastry bag fitted with small star tip. Pipe rosettes of mousse around top edge of cake. Chill cake until ready to serve- Can be made up to 8 hours ahead. Arrange lemon slices between rosettes. Cut cake into wedges. From Bon Appétit

Strawberry Crisp

1 c Uncooked Oatmeal 
1 c All purpose Flour 
1 c Brown Sugar 
1/4 c Chopped Walnuts 
1/2 c Butter or margarine 
1/2 c Sugar 
3 c Sliced fresh or frozen Strawberry 
Mix together oatmeal, flour and brown sugar. Add nuts. Cut in butter or margarine until crumbly. In another bowl, mix strawberries and white sugar together. Grease an 8" square pan. Spread half the crumb mixture on bottom. Cover with strawberries. Spread remaining crumb mixture over top. Bake at 350 deg F oven for 45 minutes. Serve warm or cold with whipped cream or topping. 

Jam Filled Lemon Tarts 
from Auramooth's Wiccan Page

1-3oz package softened cream cheese 
1/2 cup butter, softened 
Beat cream cheese and butter until smooth.

2 Tablespoons sugar 
1/2 teaspoon grated lemon peel 
Add sugar and lemon.

1 cup flour

Mix in flour. Gather dough into two balls, chill one hour. Roll out dough, cutting 2" disks out with cutter. Spoon 1/4" of jam into center of disc. Gather edges into three equally spaced corners-like a tricorn hat-and roll pointsover slightly, pinching shut. Bake at 375 degrees until golden brown, about 15 to 20 minutes. Tasty jam: rhubarb ginger, apricot, cherry, etc. geocities.com/Athens/Parthenon/7039/AshlinCD.html

Beltane Marigold Custard
from Wicca:A Guide for the Solitary Practitioner, by Scott Cunningham

2 cups milk 
1 cup unsprayed marigold petals 
1/4 tsp. salt 
3 Tbsp. sugar 
1 to 2 inch piece vanilla bean 
3 egg yolks, slightly beaten 
1/8 tsp. allspice 
1/8 tsp. nutmeg 
1/2 tsp. rose water 
Whipped cream
Using a clean mortar and pestal reserved for cooking purposes, pound marigold petals. Or, crush with a spoon. Mix the salt sugar and spices together. Scald milk with the marigolds and the vanilla bean. Remove the vanilla bean and add the egg yolks and dry ingredients. Cook on low heat. When the mixture coats a spoon, add rose water and cool. Top with whipped cream. Garnish with fresh marigold petals.

MEADE 
 
1 gallon Water
4 pounds Honey
6 Cloves
2 Sticks cinnamon
Juice & peel from one lemon
1 teaspoon Activated dry yeast


In a large nonreactive pot, add the next four ingredients to the gallon of water. Boil all together for 30 minutes, then strain into a crock that will hold it with a little room to spare. When cooled, add the yeast, dissolved in some of the liquid. Allow to ferment in a cool place - 55 degrees is ideal - until it ceases bubbling and the liquor clears, then bottle, cap tightly and store in a cool, dark cellar. It should not be used for at least a month, and longer is better. This meade, unlike many other drinks, does not improve with really long aging, so it should be consumed within a year of the time it was made.

Beltane Dandelion Delight

This lovely spring tonic makes good use of pesky weeds to rejuvenate the body with the earth's reawakening. Dandelions are high in vitamins and legends claim that Hecate once entertained Theses with dandelion water. Magickal Attributes: divination, wind magick, wishes and goals, communicating with the Spirit World.

Ingredients:
3 C Dandelion Petals
1 Gallon Orange Juice
Juice of One Lemon
1/4 C Sugar
Ginger Ale (optional)

Clean off the dandelion petals with cool water. In the meantime, warm the orange juice and lemon together, then add dandelions. Make certain you only have petals (no green parts). Add the sugar, stirring constantly until dissolved: strain juices and chill. Add ginger ale for a light bubbly drink.

VARIATIONS: Prepare this recipe with lemonade instead of orange juice and juice of one orange instead of a lemon. This is refreshing, purifying quality and poured over crushed ice, is wonderful on a hot summer day.

May Wine
INGREDIENTS: 
1 bottle of white wine- German is ideal 
1/2 cup strawberries, sliced 
12 sprigs of Woodruff, fresh 
PREPARATION:

Pour wine into a wide mouth jar or carafe. Add the sliced strawberries and woodruff, and let sit for an hour or more. Strain and serve chilled

We try to credit all artciles but sometimes don't know where they came from. Some information is our own research and some is sent into us by friends and customers. If you see something here that is yours and your not getting credit for it please contact us and we will add you as the author or remove it if requested. We want to thank everyone for sharing this wonderful information!

 

This article was published on 05/01/2008. This article was last modified on 04/09/2010.

How To Hold a Beltane Bonfire Rite (Group Ceremony)

The Beltane bonfire is a tradition that goes back hundreds of years. The fire was more than a big pile of logs and some flame. It was a place where the entire community gathered around -- a place of music and magic and dancing and lovemaking. It was customary to light the fire on May Eve (the last night of April) and allow it to burn until the sun went down on May 1. The bonfire was lit with a bundle made from nine different types of wood and wrapped with colorful ribbons. Once the fire was blazing, a piece of smoldering wood was taken to each home in the village, to ensure fertility throughout the summer months.

Difficulty: Average
Time Required: Varied

Here's How:

This was typically the time of year when fairs and markets were held, and as most country villages had a common or a green of some sort, there was always room for merriment. Depending on where you live, you might not have enough space for a big bonfire or dancing -- and that's okay. Just make do with what you have. An alternative to a large bonfire might be a small fire bowl (they're usually available at discount stores and home improvement chains) or even a tabletop brazier. If you're in an apartment and space is at a premium, consider building your fire in a small cauldron or other heat resistant bowl.

Beltane is the spring counterpart to Samhain. While in the autumn, everything is dying, in spring it comes alive, glorious and bursting free from the earth. Beltane is about fertility and sex and passion and life. This ceremony is designed for a group, and includes a symbolic union of the May Queen and the King of the Forest. Depending on the relationship between the people playing these roles, you can get as lusty as you like. If you're doing a family-oriented Beltane celebration, you may choose instead to keep things fairly tame.

For this ritual you'll need the following:

A bonfire -- set it up ahead of time, and designate someone to be in charge of lighting and tending it
A May Queen -- if possible, select a woman to play this part who is still within her childbearing years
A King of the Forest -- any adult man can play this role, but it's even better if he's someone who is actually partnered with the woman playing the May Queen
Drums and other noisemakers
Optional: a crown of flowers for each of the females present
Optional: a headdress of antlers for each of the males present

First, have the group circle around the fire, with the May Queen and the King of the Forest on opposite sides. The High Priest (HP) or High Priestess (HPs) should welcome everyone with something like this:

Beltane is here! It is a time when the earth is fertile and full.
Long ago, our ancestors planted their fields at Beltane.
The fields that lay fallow for months are now warm and waiting.
The soil that was dormant for the winter now begs us to plant our seeds.
The earth is awakening and ripe, and this is a season of love and passion.
It is a season of fire.

At this point, the fire starter should begin lighting the bonfire. The HP or HPS continues:

As our fires grow, lighting up the night sky, the fire within us grows stronger.
It is the fire of lust and passion, knowing that like the earth, we too are fertile.
Tonight, the God emerges from the forest. He is known by many names -- 
he is Pan, Herne, Cernunnos, the Green Man. He is the God of the Forest.
Tonight is the night he will chase and capture the maiden.
She is the Queen of the May, Aphrodite, Venus, Cerridwen. 
She is the Goddess of fields and flowers, she is Mother Earth herself.As the HP introduces the God of the Forest and the May Queen, they should each step forward into the circle. The HP says:Bring fertility to the land! Let the hunt begin!

At this point, the May Queen and the God of the Forest begin the chase, traveling sunwise around the circle, weaving in and out of the other participants. Remember, the May Queenwants to make love to the God of the Forest. This is a fun chase, a joyful courtship, not a mock rape; make sure both parties understand this and prepare accordingly. She can even allow him to get close to her, pretending she's ready to join him… and then slipping away at the last second. They should travel the circle three times in the chase, and finally stop at a point in front of the bonfire -- hopefully, it will be burning well by now.

While the God of the Forest is pursuing his lady love, everyone else in the circle starts drumming. Start of slowly -- after all, a courtship can take some time to get started. As the couple begins to speed up, increase the tempo of the music. If you'd like to chant instead of or in addition to drumming, go ahead. There are many popular traditional chants in Wicca and Paganism, and nearly all sound good when you sing them with a group. When the May Queen and the God of the Forest finally complete their three-times journey of the circle, the drums should stop abruptly.

The HP says:

Fire and passion, love and life, brought together as one.

At this point, the May Queen says to the God of the Forest:

I am the earth, the womb of all creation. 
Within me, new life grows each year.
Water is my blood, air my breath, and fire is my spirit.
I give you honor, and shall create new life with you.

The God of the Forest replies to her, saying:

I am the rutting stag, the seed, the energy of life.
I am the mighty oak that grows in the forest.
I give you honor, and shall create new life with you.

The couple kisses, long and passionate. If they're feeling really lusty, they can fall to the ground and roll around for a while -- feel free to cover them with a blanket if you like. This kiss (or more) is the symbolic union of the male and female spirit, the great rite between man and woman. Once the embrace is broken, the HP calls out:

The earth is once more growing new life within! We shall be blessed with abundance this year!

Everyone else in the circle claps and cheers -- after all, you've just guaranteed that your village will have hearty crops and strong livestock this year! Celebrate by dancing around the bonfire, drumming and singing. When you are ready, end the ritual.

Tips:

* Note: if you have a woman in your group who is trying to conceive, she is absolutely the best choice for the role of May Queen. Her partner or lover may act the part of the God of the Forest, or another man may stand in as a symbolic consort.

What You Need

A bonfire
A couple willing to play the parts of May Queen and God of the Forest
Drums and noisemakers

Fertility Deities of Beltane

 

By Donna Morgan on Friday, April 25, 2014 at 4:25pm

Greek God Dionysus

Beltane Rituals
List Of Gods And Goddesses
Goddess Artemis
Nature Goddess
Moon Goddess

 

Cernunnos is the god of fertility and the wild stag.

 

Beltane is a time of great fertility -- for the earth itself, for animals, and of course for people as well. This season has been celebrated by cultures going back thousands of years, in a variety of ways, but nearly all shared the fertility aspect. Typically, this is a Sabbat to celebrate gods of the hunt or of the forest, and goddesses of passion and motherhood, as well as agricultural deities. Here are a list of gods and goddesses that can be honored as part of your tradition's Beltane rituals.

Artemis (Greek): The moon goddess Artemis was associated with the hunt, and was seen as a goddess of forests and hillsides. This pastoral connection made her a part of spring celebrations in later periods.
Bes (Egyptian): Worshiped in later dynasties, Bes was a household protection god, and watched over mothers and young children. He and his wife, Beset, were paired up in rituals to cure problems with infertility.
Bacchus (Roman): Considered the equivalent of Greek god Dionysus, Bacchus was the party god -- grapes, wine, and general debauchery were his domain. In March each year, Roman women could attend secret ceremonies called the bacchanalia, and he is associated with sexual free-for-alls and fertility.
Cernunnos (Celtic): Cernunnos is a horned god found in Celtic mythology. He is connected with male animals, particularly the stag in rut, and this has led him to be associated with fertility and vegetation. Depictions of Cernunnos are found in many parts of the British Isles and western Europe. He is often portrayed with a beard and wild, shaggy hair -- he is, after all, the lord of the forest.
Flora (Roman): This goddess of spring and flowers had her own festival, Floralia, which was celebrated every year between April 28 to May 3. Romans dressed in bright robes and floral wreaths, and attended theater performances and outdoor shows. Offerings of milk and honey were made to the goddess.
Hera (Greek): This goddess of marriage was the equivalent of the Roman Juno, and took it upon herself to bestow good tidings to new brides. A maiden about to marry could make offerings to Hera, in the hopes that she would bless the marriage with fertility. In her earliest forms, she appears to have been a nature goddess, who presides over wildlife and nurses the young animals which she holds in her arms.
Kokopelli (Hopi): This flute-playing, dancing spring god carries unborn children upon his own back, and then passes them out to fertile women. In the Hopi culture, he is part of rites that relate to marriage and childbearing, as well as the reproductive abilities of animals. Often portrayed with rams and stags, symbolic of his fertility, Kokopelli occasionally is seen with his consort, Kokopelmana.
Pan (Greek): This agricultural god watched over shepherds and their flocks. He was a rustic sort of god, spending lots of time roaming the woods and pastures, hunting and playing music on his flute. Pan is typically portrayed as having the hindquarters and horns of a goat, similar to a faun. Because of his connection to fields and the forest, he is often honored as a spring fertility god.
Priapus (Greek): This fairly minor rural god has one giant claim to fame -- his permanently erect and enormous phallus. The son of Aphrodite by Dionysus (or possibly Zeus, depending on the source), Priapus was mostly worshiped in homes rather than in an organized cult. Despite his constant lust, most stories portray him as sexually frustrated, or even impotent. However, in agricultural areas he was still regarded as a god of fertility, and at one point he was considered a protective god, who threatened sexual violence against anyone -- male or female -- who transgressed the boundaries he guarded.
Sheela-na-Gig (Celtic): Although the Sheela-na-Gig is technically the name applied to the carvings of women with exaggerated vulvas that have been found in Ireland and England, there's a theory that the carvings are representative of a lost pre-Christian goddess. Typically, the Sheela-na-Gig adorns buildings in areas of Ireland that were part of the Anglo-Norman conquests in the 12th century. She is shown as a homely woman with a giant yoni, which is spread wide to accept the seed of the male. Folkloric evidence indicates that the figures are theory that the figures were part of a fertility rite, similar to "birthing stones", which were used to bring on conception.
Xochiquetzal (Aztec): This fertility goddess was associated with spring, and represented not only flowers but the fruits of life and abundance. She was also the patron goddess of prostitutes and craftsmen

Fulfillment & Desires Beltane Family Ritual

Beltane is right around the corner and it can be a celebration for the family too.

Fulfillment & Desires Beltane Family Ritual:

POSTED BY HIGH PRIESTESS ALTERA
This is a family Beltane Sabbat ritual, and your children can also be included. It is best to perform this ritual late at night, if possible. Have a family dinner before the ritual, consisting of things like light salad, fresh fruit and bread. When you’re done, cover the table and begin the ritual itself.

You will need one flower pot for each of the family members who participate in the ritual. In addition to that, you will need soil to fill the pots, seeds of your favorite plants or flowers, cups of water, pieces of paper and pen for each family member, a small kettle or cauldron with fire, and a table on which your Wiccan altar will sit. You can perform the ritual outside and make a nice bonfire if you have a garden.

The oldest person in the family should carry out the ritual, saying:

“We welcome the spring! Light is returned, and life has returned to earth. The soil is dark and full of energy, and this evening we plant our seeds. They will fall into the soil, giving out roots while they wait for the time to meet the sun. We plant the seeds and thank the earth for its strength and new life!”
Now it’s time for each of the family members to fill their pots with soil, and spread the seeds around the pot. Say the following:

“These tiny seeds contain life, they will sprout and bring us wealth. Flowers, herbs and vegetables, fruits from the bounty of earth. We are grateful for the new crops that they will give us”.
Everyone has to sow the seeds inside the pots. Help the children if they are having trouble. Finally, hand out the cups of water to everyone and say:

“The water is cool and life giving! Give life to the seeds, moisten the soil. We are grateful for the water because it allows life to bloom again”.
Let everyone pour water on their soil inside the pot. Place all the pots on the altar table when done. Give a piece of paper and pen to everyone and say the following:

“Tonight we plant the seeds in the ground, but the holiday of fires – is a time when others can grow as well. We plant the seeds of desire in our hearts and souls and we wish to see them bloom. We plant the seeds of love, wisdom and happiness, and we harvest the harmony and joy. We add water to bring life and wealth of all kinds to our home. We give our desires to the fire, so the universe will grant them”.
Everyone needs to write down their wishes and desires on paper, be it happiness, financial security, health, strong relationships and so on. For children it can be simpler, but even if your child wants things like a pony – don’t hinder him. When done, everyone should carefully throw their papers to the fire. When all the desires burn, you can sit down and celebrate Beltane.

Troll

Troll: a hillspirit, which is why Trolls are called Hillpeople or Hillfolk, supposed to be immensely rich, and especially dislike noise.
There are many variations of the Troll from Norse mythology. The name is Norse for monster. Danish trolls have large noses, are extremely ugly and wear a craftsman's apron with a red cap and a white long beard. In Ebletoft Trolls had humps on their backs and hooked noses wearing grey jackets and a red cap. In Gudmanstap Trolls differed by being tall in size and wearing black clothes. In Norway there are said to also be ugly but are also hairy. There is a Norwegian female version of the Troll, which is a beautiful redheaded lady. In Swedish and Danish myth they are more like the Brownie.
Generally Trolls lived in communities under hills in long barrows and ancient earthworks. These homes were places of great splendour with vast amounts of treasure. Some folklore stories tell of Trolls having tails and in art this is considered to be an addition added in by the artists. Sometimes Trolls looked exactly like humans and were said to be more beautiful and handsome than some humans. Some of these good looking Trolls had a tail or hairy feet which was the telling factor that this was no human. If you politely told them about their feet or tail, you would be rewarded. If however you were rude or shocked by this fact then the Troll would make you pay for your rude manner. Some say that the only way to tell a Troll apart from humans was their unchristian behaviour such as walking away from Church on a Sunday.
Some Trolls were very rich an possessed much treasure. Usually they would leave their treasure outside of their cave to be aired and put a snake or a bull to guard their treasure. Trolls lived in a mirror like world where objects became their opposite in the Troll world. What was considered dirt to us was treasure for the Trolls. As such if a Troll were to give you what you perceived as a worthless item, the item would later transform into gold or a diamond.
In the Middle Ages they are fiends that wield black magic. Trolls steal possessions, women and children. They hate noise and can be driven out by church bells. One can also protect themselves from Trolls by a branch of mistletoe. This was used to stop children and animals from being taken. They are cannibalistic and are excellent at creating metals and creating magic out of herbs. They turn into stone if the light hits them and so Trolls only come out from dusk to dawn to cause trouble and steal from people.
On the Orkney Island the Trolls are called Drows or Trows and there are three types: Land, Sea and Peerie. There are also the Norse Bergfolk, the Borbytibgarna from the forests and mountains of northern Europe, the devious Fine, the Henkies of Scotland, the peculiar Mara and Huld and Sjotroll.
Drows
In mythology Drows are another name for Trolls but the name has recently been used in Dungeons and Dragons and other modern day fantasy worlds to denote a dark elf. However Dark Elves are a part of Norse mythology and are correctly known as Svartalfar.

Beltane Lore

Beltane (most commonly pronounced "BELL-tayn", but also can be "BEEL-teen", "BEEL-tawn-uh", or "BYAL-tinn") is one of the Greater Wiccan Sabbats and is usually celebrated on May 1st, but can be on the night of April 30th, depending on your tradition or - if you are solitary - simply your personal choice. In the Celtic tradition it is celebrated on May 1st or the first Full Moon in Taurus. The Scottish tradition of PectiWita celebrate their Sabbat on May 15th.

Other names used for this Sabbat are Bealtaine (Irish Wittan), Whitsun or Old Bhealltainn (Scottish PectiWita), Bealtinne (Caledonii or the Druids), Samhradh and La Baal Tinne (Faery Wicca), Roodmas, Rudemas (Mexican Craft), Walburga (Teutonic), Walpurgisnacht (German), Walpurgis Eve, Celtic Summer, Giamonios, Tanas Day - La Giornata di Tana (Aridian Strega), Floralia, The Great Rite, May Day, and May Eve. It is also known as Cetshamain in Ireland, and is one of the few specifically Irish festivals.

This Sabbat is primarily a fertility festival, with Nature enchantments and offerings to wildlings and Elementals. The return of full-blown fertility is now very evident. The powers of elves and fairies are growing and will reach their height at Summer Solstice. Celebrants sometimes jump over broomsticks or dance around May Poles, both as symbols of fertility. Bonfire leaping and horn blowing are other forms of traditional celebration. Weaving and plaiting are traditional arts at this time of year, for the joining together of two substances to form a third is in keeping with the spirit of Beltane. This Sabbat represents the Union of the God and Goddess, the Sacred Marriage, all new life, and fertility for all living things.

Most Wiccans consider this Sabbat to be the start of the Light Half of the Year - the Summer - as opposed to the Dark Half of the Year - Winter - which begins on Samhain. Most Wiccans view this as the half of the year which is ruled by the Goddess, while the dark half is ruled by the God. As I stated above - this is a fertility Sabbat - and traditionally is considered to be the time that the God and Goddess are wed. It is also considered to be the time that He impregnates Her as they are "sexually connected" on this day. This is represented symbolically by the wrapping of the May Pole. In the olden days, the May Pole was made from a communal pine tree which had been decorated at Yule, with most of its branches removed at this time. A few of the uppermost branches could remain if desired. Traditionally, the ribbons attached around the top of the May Pole are red and white... this is to represent either one of these: the red as the Sun God and the white as the Virgin Goddess, or the white for the Maiden and the red for the Mother. The participants dance around the May Pole carrying the ribbons - the males holding the red and the females holding the white. As they dance, they weave and intertwine the ribbons to form a symbolic birth canal wrapped around the phallic pole, representing the union of the Goddess and God. Many Wiccans choose this time to perform their own Handfastings or Weddings. Another great choice would be the next Sabbat at the Summer Solstice.

Symbolically, many Pagans choose to represent Beltane with fresh flowers all around and the cauldron which is filled with flowers. All of the following flowers are symbolic of Beltane: roses, bluebells, marigolds, daisies, primroses and lilac. Mirrors are also appropriate. Altar decorations may also include a small May pole and/or a phallic-shaped candle (to represent fertility), and a daisy chain. Plaiting and weaving straw, creating things with wicker, making baskets and fabrics are traditional arts for this turn in the Wheel of the Year. Other symbols used to represent Beltane are the May Pole (the traditional full-size one is about 10 feet tall), May baskets, crossroads, eggs, butterchurns, and chalices.

Traditional activities include the already mentioned wrapping of the May Pole, the Great Rite, jumping the balefire, blowing horns, and gathering flowers. Solitary Practitioners might consider the weaving together of ribbons as an alternative to creating and dancing around the May Pole. It is considered taboo to give away fire or food on this day.

Appropriate Deities for Beltane include all Virgin-Mother Goddesses, all Young Father Gods, all Gods and Goddesses of the Hunt, of Love, and of Fertility. Some Beltane Goddesses to mention by name here include Aphrodite, Arianrhod, Artemis, Astarte, Venus, Diana, Ariel, Var, Skadi, Shiela-na-gig, Cybele, Xochiquetzal, Freya, and Rhiannon. Beltane Gods include Apollo, Bacchus Bel/Belanos, Cernunnos, Pan, Herne, Faunus, Cupid/Eros, Odin, Orion, Frey, Robin Goodfellow, Puck, and The Great Horned God.

One key action to keep in mind during this time in the Wheel of the Year is to take action on the activities and projects you had planned and started on Ostara. Spellwork to consider include those for fertility, love, spiritual communion/closeness with deity, safety, prosperity, and conservation. This being a time of great magick, is a good time for divinations of all types, and for establishing a woodland or garden shrine. The household guardians should be honored at this time.

The most common colors associated with Beltane are white and dark green, but also appropriate are all the colors of the rainbow spectrum itself. Stones to use during the Beltane celebration include sapphires, bloodstones, emeralds, orange carnelians, and rose quartz.. Animals associated with Beltane are goats, rabbits, and honey bees. Mythical beasts associated with Beltane include faeries, pegesus, satyrs, and giants.

Plants and herbs associated with Beltane are primrose, yellow cowslip, hawthorn, roses, birch trees, rosemary, and lilac. Also included are almond, angelica, ash trees, bluebells, cinquefoil, daisies, frankincense, ivy, marigolds, satyrion root, and woodruff. For Beltane incense, you could make a blend from any of the following scents or simply choose one... frankincense, lilac, passion flower, rose, or vanilla.

Foods in tune with this day (linking your meals with the seasons is a fine way of attuning with Nature) traditionally come from the dairy, and dishes such as marigold custard and vanilla ice cream are fine. Sweets of all kinds, honey, and oats are fine fare for Beltane. Additional foods to include are all red fruits such cherries and strawberries, green herbal salads, and red or pink wine punch. Oatmeal or barley cakes, sometimes known as "Beltane Cakes", are also appropriate.

 

Beltane 2014

Almost that time once again!

By Donna Morgan on Wednesday, April 23, 2014 at 2:51pm

Merry meet and welcome to spring at last! The dogwoods just started blooming

here on our mountain and the leaves are finally sprouting on the hardwood

trees in our woods. It's all so beautiful that I don't even mind the

sneezing and sniffling that come with the pollen! Weather is warmer now and

we're looking forward to celebrating our six month wedding anniversary at

Beltane!

 

Beltane is the bursting forth of spring in all its promised glory. We

celebrate new life, love of the Earth and of one another, and the joy of

growth and progress in all things.

 

 

Beltane

 

Alternate Names

Beltain, Bealtaine, Beltine, May Day, Cetsamhain ('first Samhain'),

Walpurgis Night (Beltane Eve), Celtic 'Flower Festival'

 

Druidic Name

Beltane

 

Christian Equivalent

Roodmas, Rood Day, Feast of Saint Philip and Saint James, Feast of Saint

Walpurga

 

Place in the Natural Cycle

Beltane is the cross-quarter festival that marks the start of the summer

quarter of the year and the end of the spring quarter. This is a time when

nature blossoms and felicity and fertility return to the land. In times

past, the livestock stockaded at Samhain was returned to summer pastures at

Beltane.

 

Further Details

Beltane is a joyful festival of growth and fecundity that heralds the

arrival of summer. It is the festival of the 'Good Fire' or 'Bel-fire',

named after the solar deity Bel. Bel was also known as Beli or Bile in

Ireland, with Bile meaning 'tree', so Beltane may also mean 'Tree-fire'.

Beltane is the counterpart of Samhain (and is sometimes referred to as

Cetsamhain, the 'first Samhain'), and these two important festivals divide

the year into summer and winter halves, just as the two equinoctial

celebrations, Ostara and Mabon, divide the year into light and dark halves.

 

Lighting fires was customary at Beltane, and traditionally a Beltane fire

was composed of the nine sacred woods of the Celts. All hearth fires were

extinguished on Beltane Eve and then kindled again from the sacred "need

fires" lit on Beltane. People would leap through the smoke and flames of

Beltane fires and cattle were driven through them for purification,

fertility, prosperity and protection.

 

In terms of the God and Goddess cycle, Beltane marks the union of the two

deities, bringing new life to the earth. It is a traditional time for

Handfastings (marriages), and was a time for couples to make love outside to

bless the crops and the earth. Maypoles were often danced around at Beltane

to bring fertility and good fortune. The later addition of ribbons which

were wrapped around the pole by the dancers brought a further sense of the

integration of male and female archetypes, mirroring the union between the

God and the Goddess. Beltane lore also includes washing in May-day dew for

beauty and health, and scrying in sacred waters, such as ponds or springs.

 

The festival is sometimes referred to as Roodmas, a name coined by the

medieval Christian Church in an attempt to associate Beltane with the Cross

(the Rood) rather than the life-giving symbol of the Maypole. Beltane was

also appropriated by the Church as the Feast Day of Saint Walpurga, who was

said to protect crops and was often represented with corn.

 

Beltane is a time to devote energy to growth and integration. It is a time

of celebration, exuberance and hope, when we should enjoy and appreciate the

gifts of nature.

 

 

Solitary Ritual

 

Preparation

 

Prior to this rite you should have made ready a wooden wand. This should be

a branch from an Oak or Hazel tree. Remember, do not take the wood from a

living tree!

 

The wood can be cut into the rough shape of a phallus in which case it

should be of the appropriate size and shape. On the other hand, a simple

branch, peeled of its bark, and about 13 inches long and half an inch thick

is also acceptable. Place the wand upon your alter within the Circle.

 

Prepare a dish of earth and place it upon the alter beside the wand.

 

The Rite

 

Cast the Circle and invoke the Lady and the Lord. After the invocation,

dance and chant to raise power for magical activities and then earth the

power into an unlit candle, placed inside the cauldron, at the center of the

circle. Chant the following (or make up your own!):

 

Beltane!

I dance with delight

on Beltane's night.

All senses freeing,

I dance for being.

The flower and the flame

of love's own rite

shall blossom. Sun

embrace Earth, bright.

 

Light the candle to the Sun. This is the Beltane fire, our modern substitute

for the hilltop bonfires of our ancestors. The Bel fire is an invocation to

the Sun God to bring blessing and protection for the coming year. This is

sacred fire with healing and purifying properties. As you light the candle,

be aware of its power and significance. Say:

 

I light this candle to the Sun.

Now take up a dish of earth. Bless it in the name of the Goddess.

 

Lay your hands upon it and say:

 

I bless, consecrate, and set apart this earth,

in the name of the Triple Goddess. May this

be sacred earth, set apart for magic. For

earth is of the Goddess, being her sacred body.

Remember that the Goddess is not only of the Moon, but of the Earth and of

the farthest stars. She is the Triple Goddess of the Circle of Rebirth, the

Mother of All Life. Decorate the dish of earth with flowers.

 

Now, take a wooden wand and oil it with vegetable oil. Bless it in the name

of the Lord of the Day, the youthful, ardent one, the Lord of Life, the God

of the greenwood. Pass it swiftly through the candle flame, the Bel fire, so

that it becomes magically imbued, 'charged', with power. Place the wand upon

the dish of earth, saying as you hold it there:

 

As the wand is to the earth,

so the male is to the female

and the Sun to our blossoming world.

Joined, they bring happiness.

May the God of Life give ___ {something you want, for example, peace on

Earth}

May the Goddess bring it forth!

Sit quietly for a while, and picture the blossoming of what you have desired

in life. The spells and invocations of all of us, all working on themes like

these, must eventually bear fruit, because life is on the side of peace.

Leave the earth and wand upon the alter.

 

Walk deosil three times around the circle, then spiral into the center. Go

evenly, with grace, meditatively. Sit beside the candle flame, allowing

yourself to feel peaceful. Gaze into the flame.

 

The next part is different depending on whether you are man or woman.

 

For a Woman: visualize a red rosebud in your womb. Always your womb is the

source of your creative power, whether you are pregnant with a child, an

idea, a work of art or an intention. Close your eyes and picture the light

from the candle streaming into your womb so that the rosebud blooms,

unfolds. Hold the image for a while, feeling the silkiness, smelling the

scent, the freshness, seeing the color of the fully open rose within you.

Feel the strength and power of your own fully blossomed capabilities. Say:

 

I am woman,

strong to conceive and to create,

to give birth and to tend.

As I am daughter of the Goddess,

and blessed by the God, may I ___

 

{here name what you wish to bring forth in life. For example bring healing

to others or write my book whatever matters to you}

 

Feel the strength and creative force within your womb, the center of your

being. See the power being channeled, flowing into the desire you have just

voiced. Open your eyes. Always, the rose is within you.

 

For a Man: Visualize a bright flame. This burns within your sexual center, a

point at the base of the stomach, just above the pubic hairline. It is your

own male strength and energy which may rise through your body to be released

as giving, fertilizing power, in any form, or may be the potency which

impregnates, creating a physical child. It is the force which blesses and

bestows, a healing and creative energy, like the shining Sun. Visualize also

that you are sitting in a garden and that a rose tree is in front of you,

the roses in bud. Say:

 

I am man,

and in my passion is beauty,

in my warmth is life.

As I am son of the Goddess,

and blessed by the God,

I offer my strength and vitality to ____

 

{name the area of life, the place, activity, or commitment you choose}

 

Visualize the light streaming from you to a rose upon the tree causing it to

unfold, to blossom. Your flame is lowered by this effort. Much has gone out

of you, the flame sinks down. Wait and watch, until a pink light streams

from the rose towards your body. At its touch, just above the pubic hairline

the flame resurges. It burns higher and stronger than before. Open your

eyes. The flame is always within you.

 

Circle Ceremony

 

Preparation:

 

Two white candles are on the altar with a wreath of spring flowers. Quarter

candles are green.

 

HPS leads the coven, riding poles if possible, about the Covenstead with a

quick, trotting step, singing:

 

"O do not tell the priests of our Art,

For they would call it sin;

But we will be in the woods all night,

A-conjuring summer in.

And we bring you good news by word of mouth,

For woman, cattle and corn,

For the sun is coming up from the south

With oak and ash and thorn."

A ring dance follows after which the High Priestess casts the Circle. High

Priest draws down the Moon upon the High Priestess. All are purified in

sacrifice before Her.

 

She then purifies the High Priest at her own hands.

 

All partake of Cakes and Wine followed by feasting and dancing and singing

and the Great Rite, if at all possible, in token or truly.

 

Celebrate Beltane

Arise at dawn and wash in the morning dew: the woman who washes her face in

it will be beautiful; the man who washes his hands will be skilled with

knots and nets.

 

If you live near water, make a garland or posy of spring flowers and cast it

into stream, lake or river to bless the water spirits.

 

Prepare a May basket by filling it with flowers and goodwill, then give it

to one in need of caring, such as a shut-in or elderly friend.

 

Beltane is one of the three "spirit-nights" of the year when the faeries can

be seen. At dusk, twist a rowan sprig into a ring and look through it, and

you may see them.

 

Make a wish as you jump a bonfire or candle flame for good luck—but make

sure you tie up long skirts first!

 

Make a May bowl —wine or punch in which the flowers of sweet woodruff or

other fragrant blossoms are soaked—and drink with the one you love.

 

Celebrants sometimes jump over broomsticks, especially at Handfastings which

are very common during this season, or dance around May Poles, as both of

these are symbols of fertility.

 

Traditional activities include blowing horns, and gathering flowers.

Solitary Practitioners might consider the weaving together of ribbons as an

alternative to creating and dancing around the May Pole.

 

Many like to celebrate Beltaine by decorating their homes and themselves

with fresh flower garlands, or by stringing up greenery around their homes

and places of work.

 

Sending flowers to loved ones, planting new gardens, cleaning out the

cupboards and general spring cleaning are all traditional Beltaine gestures.

 

Plaiting and weaving straw, creating things with wicker, making baskets and

fabrics are traditional arts for this turn in the Wheel of the Year.

 

Symbols of Beltane

Traditional symbols used to represent Beltane are the May Pole (the

traditional full-size one is about 10 feet tall), May baskets, crossroads,

eggs, butterchurns and chalices. Symbolically, many Pagans choose to

represent Beltane with fresh flowers all around the ritual area as well as

their homes and the cauldron is often totally filled with gorgeous

Springtime flowers. Roses, bluebells, marigolds, daisies, primroses, violets

and lilac are associated with Beltane.

 

Beltane Altar

Altars are generally adorned with seasonal flowers. Other appropriate altar

decorations for the season include mirrors, a small May pole, phallic-shaped

candles to represent fertility, and daisy chains.

 

Gods and Goddesses of Beltane

Appropriate Deities for Beltane include all Virgin-Mother Goddesses, all

Young Father Gods, all Gods and Goddesses of the Hunt, of Love, and of

Fertility. Some Beltane Goddesses to mention by name here include Aphrodite,

Arianrhod, Artemis, Astarte, Venus, Diana, Ariel, Var, Skadi, Shiela-na-gig,

Cybele, Xochiquetzal, Freya, and Rhiannon. Beltane Gods include Apollo,

Bacchus, Bel/Belanos, Cernunnos, Pan, Herne, Faunus, Cupid/Eros, Odin,

Orion, Frey, Robin Goodfellow, Puck, and The Great Horned God.

 

Colors of Beltane

The most common colors associated with Beltane are white and dark green, and

red... but also appropriate are all the colors of the rainbow spectrum

itself. Stones to use during the Beltane celebration include sapphires,

bloodstones, emeralds, orange carnelians, and rose quartz.

 

Plants and Animals of Beltane

Plants and herbs associated with Beltane are primrose, yellow cowslip,

hawthorn, roses, birch trees, rosemary, and lilac. Also included are almond,

angelica, ash trees, bluebells, cinquefoil, daisies, frankincense, ivy,

marigolds, satyrion root, and woodruff.

 

Animals associated with Beltane are goats, rabbits, and honey bees. Mythical

beasts associated with Beltane include faeries, pegesus, satyrs, and giants.

 

Incense

Use lilac, passion flower, rose or vanilla. These can be used alone or

blended as you like.

 

Foods

Dairy foods and eggs are in tune with this season. Sweets of all kinds,

honey, and oats are all fine foods for Beltane. Simple dishes such as

vanilla ice cream and egg custard are quite traditional fare on this day.

For something a little different, try some of the recipes below:

 

Beltane Recipes

Fried Honeycakes

These cakes were left in the garden to please Faery visitors. If you plan to

leave an offering to the Faery, double the recipe to keep some for your

family. They're scrumptious.

 

1/2 cup sweet white wine

2 tablespoons sugar

1 egg

1 cup honey

2/3 cup flour

1/8 teaspoon nutmeg

1/8 teaspoon cinnamon

Oil for frying

1/8 teaspoon salt

 

Beat the wine & egg in a medium bowl. Combine the flour, cinnamon, salt &

sugar in a small bowl. Stir into the egg mixture. Let stand 30 minutes.

Combine the honey & nutmeg in a small bowl.

 

Heat 1/2-inch of the oil in a frying pan until hot, but not smoking. Drop

the batter into the oil 1 tablespoon at a time; fry until golden brown.

Drain on paper towels. Dip into the honey.

 

Yield: 1 1/2 Dozen.

 

May Wine

1 bottle of white wine (German is ideal)

1/2 cup strawberries, sliced

12 sprigs of woodruff, fresh

 

Pour wine into a wide mouth jar or carafe. Add the sliced strawberries and

woodruff, and let sit for an hour or more. Strain and serve chilled.

 

Dandelion Salad

1/2 pound torn dandelion greens

1/2 red onion, chopped

2 tomatoes, chopped

1/2 teaspoon dried basil

salt and pepper to taste

 

In a medium bowl, toss together dandelion greens, red onion, and tomatoes.

Season with basil, salt, and pepper.

 

Makes 4 servings

 

Candied Violets

1 Egg White

Granulated Sugar

Violets

 

Whip your egg white until it is frothy, but does not peak. Gather the

Violets, washing them quickly in cool water and allowing them to drip-dry.

Then, dip each Violet in the egg white and roll the flowers in the sugar to

coat them evenly. Be careful not to put the sugar on too thick. Finally,

leave the petals on waxed paper to dry for 1 day. These may be stored for

several months in an airtight container (waxed paper between each layer.)

without losing fragrance or flavor.

 

Strawberry Cookies

3/4 cup sugar

1/2 cup shortening

1/4 cup milk

1 egg, lightly beaten

2 teaspoons grated lemon zest

1 teaspoon almond extract

2 1/2 cups unsifted all-purpose flour

2 teaspoons baking powder

red and green food coloring

 

Cream the sugar and shortening until fluffy, on medium speed if using an

electronic mixer. Beat in egg, milk, zest, and extract. Sift flour and

powder together in a bowl and gradually add to the other mix. Wrap dough in

plastic and chill for 1 hour.

 

Preheat oven to 350ºF. Half dough and put the other half back in the fridge.

Form dough into flattened balls and roll to 1/8 inch on a floured surface.

Using strawberry-shaped cookie cutter, cut out cookies, and cut out little

indentations like strawberry seeds if desired.

 

Put 1 tablespoon of water into each of two dishes and add a few drops of

each color of food coloring. Paint the cookies with a paintbrush using the

colors, making the body of the strawberry red and the stem and leaves green.

Bake them on an ungreased cookie sheet for 8 minutes, then cool on racks.

Repeat the process with the other half of the dough.

 

Yield: 5 dozen

 

 

Beltane Group Ritual

 

 

 

Coven walks in. Women have baskets of flower petals, and the men have

branches with bells. Coven walks deosil three times sprinkling flower petals

and shaking the branches. Each time around they chant:

 

Coven: "Blessed Be this sacred ground as we walk once (twice, thrice) round"

 

Covenors take their places, High Priest and Priestess by the altar and the

rest at the four corners. Starting in the east, each person calls for the

elements and salutes them with the proper symbol.

 

East: "Guardians, spirits, elementals, and powers of the east and of air, we

ask your guidance and protection at our circle this day. Join us in

celebrating this sacred season and the Lord and Lady."

 

South: "Guardians, spirits, elementals, and powers of the south and of fire,

we ask your guidance and protection at our circle this day. Join us in

celebrating this sacred season and the Lord and Lady."

 

West: "Guardians, spirits, elementals, and powers of the west and of water,

we ask your guidance and protection at our circle this day. Join us in

celebrating this sacred season and the Lord and Lady."

 

North: "Guardians, spirits, elementals, and powers of the north and of

earth, we ask your guidance and protection at our circle this day. Join us

in celebrating this sacred season and the Lord and Lady."

 

High Priest and Priestess calls forth the lord and lady. As each is called a

candle is lit to represent them.

 

High Priestess: "Tonight is the lusty eve of May. Blessed be the fertile

Goddess"

 

High Priest: "Tonight is the lusty eve of May. Blessed be the Horned God"

 

Coven: "Tonight is the lusty eve of May. Blessed be the sacred marriage that

manifests all creation."

 

Hand Maiden: "We gather on this blessed day so that we might celebrate

Beltane, the start of the fertile summer season."

 

Hand Master: "In this moment between time, we come to praise the bountiful

Goddess..."

 

Hand Maiden: "...and her God consort..."

 

Hand Master: "...Who unite today in sacred marriage. We wish to give thanks,

and to feel our selves a part of the relentlessly turning wheel of life,

death, and rebirth."

 

The Hand Maiden and the Hand master walk to the alter and picks up the

chalice and athame. They carry these to the High Priest and Priestess. The

High Priestess holds high the chalice.

 

High Priestess: "Behold the womb of the Goddess. The well spring from which

all life flows."

 

The High Priest holds high the athame.

 

High Priest: "Behold the phallus of the God. The fertilizing principal of

the universe."

 

High Priest and Priestess: "Blessed be the divine life force in all it’s

many forms"

 

Hand Maiden helps the High Priestess to the floor. The priestess can lie

with her legs open or closed, which ever is more comfortable. She will hold

the chalice with both hands over her belly. The priest will stand next to

her knees, or in between them again which ever is more comfortable. Everyone

take a moment to visualize life energy flowing into the priest and

priestess.

 

High Priest: "Blessed be you, my Goddess, my holy bride of heaven and earth.

Let me unite with you in the ancient rite of sacred marriage."

 

High Priestess: "Blessed be you, my God, my holy groom of heaven and earth.

Let me unite with you in the ancient ritual of sacred marriage."

 

High Priest and Priestess: "As we become one, we are one. As we are one, we

become one."

 

The priest kneels and brings the blade down into the chalice. Allow a few

moments to feel love and life flow between the priest and priestess. When

the priest and priestess are done, they motion to the hand maiden and master

to help them up. For the rest of the ritual the priest and priestess will

hold hands to symbolize their continual union.

 

Hand Maiden: "By this act of love, all life comes to be."

 

Hand Master: "By this act of faith, we proclaim our belief in our place on

the eternal cycle of life."

 

Hand Master and Maiden: "Blessed be the Great Rite. The Lord and Lady reign

eternal."

 

Now is the time for wish making. On a piece of paper (provided) write what

you would like to come in to your life. Keep it simple and direct. Once

everyone has their wishes written down, chant three times:

 

Coven: "Love and light and laughter be, Lord and lady bring to me. As above,

so below. Make my prosperity grow."

 

The coven tosses their wishes in to the fire. Dismiss the elements and the

Lord and lady.

 

"Stay if you will, go if you must, in perfect love and perfect trust"

 

===========================================

 

 

Faerie Folklore

 

In Ireland, one of the early races of conquerors was known as the Tuatha de

Danaan, and they were considered mighty and powerful. It was believed that

once the next wave of invaders arrived, the Tuatha went underground. In

hiding from the Milesians, the Tuatha evolved into Ireland's faerie race.

Typically, in Celtic legend and lore, the Fae are associated with magical

underground caverns and springs -- it was believed that a traveler who went

too far into one of these places would find himself in the Faerie realm.

 

Another way to access the world of the Fae was to find a secret entrance.

These were typically guarded, but every once in a while an enterprising

adventurer would find his way in. Often, he found upon leaving that more

time had passed than he expected. In several tales, mortals who spend a day

in the fairy realm find that seven years have passed in their own world.

 

Mischevious Faeries

 

In parts of England and Britain, it was believed that if a baby was ill,

chances were good that it was not a human infant at all, but a changeling

left by the Fae. If left exposed on a hillside, the Fae could come reclaim

it. William Butler Yeats relates a Welsh version of this story in his tale

The Stolen Child. Parents of a new baby could keep their child safe from

abduction by the Fae by using one of several simple charms: a wreath of oak

and ivy kept faeries out of the house, as did iron or salt placed across the

door step. Also, the father's shirt draped over the cradle keeps the Fae

from stealing a child.

 

In some stories, examples are given of how one can see a faerie. It is

believed that a wash of marigold water rubbed around the eyes can give

mortals the ability to spot the Fae. It is also believed that if you sit

under a full moon in a grove that has trees of Ash, Oak and Thorn, the Fae

will appear.

 

Are the Fae Just a Fairy Tale?

 

There are a few books that cite early cave paintings and even Etruscan

carvings as evidence that people have believed in the Fae for thousands of

years. However, faeries as we know them today didn’t really appear in

literature until about the late 1300s. In the Canterbury Tales, Geoffrey

Chaucer relates that people used to believe in faeries a long time ago, but

don't by the time the Wife of Bath tells her tale. Interestingly, Chaucer

and many of his peers discuss this phenomena, but there is no clear evidence

that describes faeries in any writings prior to this time. It appears

instead that earlier cultures had encounters with a variety of spiritual

beings, who fit into what 14th century writers considered the archetype of

the Fae.

 

So, do the Fae really exist? It's hard to tell, and it's an issue that comes

up for frequent and enthusiastic debate at any Pagan gathering. Regardless,

if you believe in faeries, there's absolutely nothing wrong with that. Leave

them a few offerings in your garden as part of your Beltane celebration --

and maybe they'll leave you something in return!

 

=====================================================

 

An appropriate poem by Dora Owen:

 

Children, children, don't forget

There are elves and fairies yet.

Where the knotty hawthorn grows

Look for prints of fairy toes.

Where the grassy rings are green

Moonlight dances shall be seen.

Watch and wait:  O lucky you,

If you find a fairy shoe:

For a ransom he will pay,

Hobbling barefoot all the day.

Lay it on his mushroom seat,

Wish your wish, and go your way.

If your wish should be discreet,

Never fear but he will pay.

                        ...Dora Owen

 

========================================================

 

Prayers for Beltane, from The Wiccan Prayer Book by Mark Ventimiglia

 

Beltane

 

Dear Mother, goddess of the flowers, praise to you for a wonderful spring. I

have shared many joys with you this season. I look forward to the coming of

summer and the many wonderful days ahead.

 

I rejoice as you, my eternal parents, celebrate your sacred marriage that

will bring fertility to the Earth; I ask that you likewise bless all the

many lovers who are handfasting this season.

 

Dear Father, god of the green wood, thank you for the gift of life.

 

Blessed Be.

 

=========================================================

 

 

Thanks to the Earth Mother

 

Great earth mother!

We give you praise today

and ask for your blessing upon us.

As seeds spring forth

and grass grows green

and winds blow gently

and the rivers flow

and the sun shines down

upon our land,

we offer thanks to you for your blessings

and your gifts of life each spring.

 

A Prayer to Cernunnos:

 

God of the green,

Lord of the forest,

I offer you my sacrifice.

I ask you for your blessing.

 

You are the man in the trees,

the green man of the woods,

who brings life to the dawning spring.

You are the deer in rut,

mighty Horned One,

who roams the autumn woods,

the hunter circling round the oak,

the antlers of the wild stag,

and the lifeblood that spills upon

the ground each season.

 

God of the green,

Lord of the forest,

I offer you my sacrifice.

I ask you for your blessing.

 

Honoring the May Queen

 

Make an offering of a floral crown, or a libation of honey and milk, to the

Queen of the May during your Beltane prayers.

 

The leaves are budding across the land

on the ash and oak and hawthorn trees.

Magic rises around us in the forest

and the hedges are filled with laughter and love.

Dear lady, we offer you a gift,

a gathering of flowers picked by our hands,

woven into the circle of endless life.

The bright colors of nature herself

blend together to honor you,

Queen of spring,

as we give you honor this day.

Spring is here and the land is fertile,

ready to offer up gifts in your name.

we pay you tribute, our lady,

daughter of the Fae,

and ask your blessing this Beltane.

 

 

 

When they ask to see your gods

your book of prayers

show them lines

drawn delicately with veins

on the underside of a bird's wing

tell them you believe

in giant sycamores mottled

and stark against a winter sky

and in nights so frozen

stars crack open

spilling streams of molten ice to earth

and tell them how you drank

the holy wine of honeysuckle

on a warm spring day

and of the softness

of your mother who never taught you

death was life's reward

but who elieved in the earth and the sun

and a million, million light years of being.

 

                                    --J. L. Stanley

 

 

Quote for the month:

"Great spirits have always found violent opposition from mediocre minds. The

latter cannot understand it when a man does not thoughtlessly submit to

hereditary prejudices but honestly and courageously uses his intelligence."

  ...Albert Einstein

 

BLYSSFUL WODEN'S DAY PAGANS

I hope everyone has enjoyed their Earth Day celebrations as I did. I just love it when a adult child of yours has a AHA moment; especially when some information you passes on to them finally rings a bell.

As many of you are aware I will be working the admin portions of admiissions and applications while my secretary Diana is on a vacation, so please be patient I will get to you.

*Posting multiple pictures*

For Legion.com- I have a group called the gallery specifically for just images. If you want to just post a bunch a pictures please put them there and not on the main activity wall. The wall is short and we need the space for announcements and blogs.

For all FB groups- please use one post and the multiple image options there as well to keep the wall free of just your pictires one after another. The group wall are for welcomings, blogs, and converstations.

Have a blessed day )O(

~Elder Airwolf~