Dedicant Path Week 18 – High Day Recap – Lughnasadh

11 08 2013

I did the ritual on my own about an hour before sunset on eve of Lughnasadh. The ritual went really well as I used the Solitary Druid Fellowships ritual with a few of my own modifications. These were a change in the prayer to the earth mother (to one I had written myself) and a different statement of purpose. I also included a three minute meditation during the centering and grounding part as I learned from the last one that having it further on seemed to break up the flow of the ritual. This time it worked well. Manannan Mac Lyr was my gatekeeper and the patron was Lugh. The offerings were as before – oil for the fire and gods, apple for the gatekeeper, silver coin for the well, oats for the earth mother, cider for the ancestors, seeds for the nature spirits and a special offering of bread for Lugh that I had made myself. I also wrote a prayer to Lugh. The ritual went well but I didn’t feel anything special.

The omen was very positive. First I asked how were the offerings accepted and got back the knight of vessels – the eel. The Eel is the purveyor of wisdom and protection, it can become a weapon of warriors and it swims through the weeds. The card is also associated with attraction, welcoming, compliance, agreement and union. I felt this meant the offerings were received positively. The second question was – how shall you respond? The card was Queen of Stones – the bear. This means power and protection of the land, richness and plenty, pragmatism, generosity and prosperity. It can also mean a demanding individual, assurance and frankness. The final question was – what more would you have me learn? This came out as Ten of Bows – responsibility. It talks of a struggle up a path towards the reassuring glow of security and companionship, the need for inner fortitude, stoic resolve and determination to take on the task handed to me, to take responsibility for actions and learn valuable lessons. I am interpreting this as a very positive omen and that the kindred accept my offerings and give me prosperity in return but they expect me to be responsible and determined in the tasks I have to deal with.

The rest of my celebrations included making bread as a symbol of the first harvest of grain and picking blackberries from behind my house and putting them on my altar along with sweetcorn. I didn’t have a party this year because people were too busy but hopefully I will for autumn equinox.

Dedicant Path Week 12 – High Day Recap – Litha

23 06 2013

I did my Solstice ritual at the time of the solstice (6.04am) on Friday 21st June. The ritual went well and quite smoothly. I used the structure and wording from the Solitary Druid Fellowship’s ritual but with a few modifications. I decided to honour Manannan and Aine as the patron deities during this ritual and Manannan was also the gatekeeper. I printed out an image of him to put above my altar which made things easier I think. I remembered to keep the offerings close to me this time so the flow of the ritual went better and I used the same offering types as previously. I found two praise poems online (one for manannan and one for aine) which I used as part of the ritual. I also decided to honour the sun by doing a sun salutation (yoga). I included this weeks meditation in my ritual, doing both the two powers and the metta meditations but I’m not sure I did them in the right place so might move the meditation to a different part of the ritual next time. I didn’t feel anything special happen but I did enjoy the ritual. I asked different questions this time of the kindreds for the omen – first was how were my offerings received? The card I pulled was Green Woman and the explanation was to do with summer solstice, fire, sovereignty, blessing, bounty and divine life. I am taking that as a positive omen. The second question was – how shall you respond? I pulled the Moon on Water card but it was upside down which totally confused me. Meanings include potential, winter solstice, gateway to the soul, mystic still point, intuition, consciousness, inner transformation, illuminating a path or darkness. It was however upside down which should mean the opposite of these things. It confused me quite a lot unless it means something about the external. The final question was what more would you have me learn? Again this was upside down but was the Woodward. Normally this means Lughnasadh, patience/ love countering anger & hate, maturity, courage, calm resolute strength, facing fear and inner darkness, mercy. I’m not sure what the kindred want me to learn that would be the opposite of these things? Any thoughts would be appreciated. I definitely need to make some runes or Oghams so there isn’t an upside down option to confuse me in future. I am taking away from this that the Kindred accepted my offerings though so that is good.

The rest of my celebrations included a big party with friends, decorating my with oak leaves and sunflower seeds, watching a version of a midsummer nights dream and spending time in nature. I also got up to watch the sunrise at 5am but it was cloudy so didn’t see much more than the sky turning a bit pinker.

Dedicant Path Week 8 – High Day Recap – Beltane

1 05 2013
Beltane Panoram

Beltane (Photo credit: pyramis)

I did my Beltane rite at 5pm on Wednesday 1st May as an ending to the celebrations. I used the structure and wording from the Solitary Druid Fellowship’s ritual but with a few modifications e.g. incorporating a prayer to the Earth Mother I had previously written. I really liked the wording of the ritual, with its emphasis on affirming our relationship with the cosmos as the purpose of ritual. I wasn’t sure which deities to honour from the Irish pantheon for this rite, so I chose not to honour any specific deities but rather honoured them all generically. The gatekeeper was Manannan Mac Lir because I am finding myself developing quite a connection with him and am thinking he may end up being my Patron deity. I live on the coast and the ocean and fishing very much dominate our lives here so I feel it is right that he is honoured. I did the ritual alone in my house as I am to nervous to do things outside in public and I don’t have a garden. I enjoyed giving the offerings, however I mucked up with the offering to the fire as I poured the oil on the flame and it went out. For offerings I used oil for the fire and the gods, apple for the gatekeeper, seeds for the nature spirits, silver coin for the well, oats for the earth mother, incense for the tree and cider for the ancestors.  I will need to bring the offerings closer to me next time as they were on a desk which wasn’t close enough and trying to get them disrupted the flow somewhat. Also, doing it in the daytime had an effect on the atmosphere of the ritual as the candle didn’t really shine much (and I forgot to light two other candles). The ritual went well however I didn’t really feel any connection which disappointed me. I also got a strange omen reading. I decided to take three tarot cards (using Wildwood Tarot) – one for each kindred, asking “What blessings do the kindred offer me?” I received an upside down “The Seer” from the Shining Ones, the “Three of Arrows” meaning Jealousy from the Nature Spirits and “Ten of Stones” meaning Home from the Ancestors. Reading up what they meant, I’m not really sure what to make of the message as it doesn’t seem very positive. Putting together the messages, I think it might be telling me that there’s some negative emotions towards certain people that I need to deal with. However I’m not sure and am very confused.

The rest of my celebrations have included a big party with friends last night, making a maypole for my altar, decorating with flowers and hawthorn branches (Cornish tradition), going for a walk to nature to experience the beginning of summer, spending some romantic time with my partner and making summery foods like potato salad (vegan), flapjacks and homemade lemonade.