1 candle for East - yellow
2 candles for altar - green/black & white
jug of water
4 big goblets
willow branches for east and center
4 trays or baskets for leaves
Outline circle with 20-24 candles, each in sand in a white bag. Elements, candle at East.
two candles, chalice of water, 4 big goblets of water, athame, bell, rag, matches, lighter, ritual, jug of water, bucket of water, 4 branches of willow
Smuge people as they enter at East gate, then sprinkle each person with water from a willow branch. People move clockwise into a circle. Have leaders ready for spiral dance.
We are now going to enter the ritual space, banishing the negative energies we've gathered over the past year as we spiral towards the center, and reemerge from the womb with positive, healthy energy.
Ya'll remember the buddy system, don't you? Well, find a buddy and stay with your buddy.
Give folks a chance to find a buddy.
Now we're going to play follow the leader. You and your buddy must follow the buddies in front of you as closely as possible. The steps are simple... step with the right foot to the front and right and bring the left leg in to meet it. Then step out and to the left with the left leg. Bring the right leg in to meet it. Follow the leader... we are moving as one. As we begin to spiral inward, leave space for two bodies to get by when we start to emerge from the center.
People begin spiraling inward.
Continue to follow the leader. When the first set of Buddies reaches the center they will face each other and touch fingertips and spiral back out of the dance in the spaces in between. Just follow the buddies in front of you. Remember, so long as everyone watches the buddies directly in front of them, no one should get confused.
People begin emerging from the center.
When the first couple emerges from the spiral they will start the circle by linking pinky fingers and moving doesil around the edges of the circle. As you emerge from the spiral link pinkies with those already out and continue to move around the circle. Stay focused, listen to the drums, stay with your buddy and follow the leader. Participants break off after dance and go to their places.
Give everyone a chance to get back to their place after the dance.
Invocation of Elements:
Sacred Fire, life-giving light of sun,
Fire of hearths, flame of passion and inspiration,
Join us in our celebration this night.
Sacred Earth, powerful mountains,
Mighty forests, bountiful fields,
Sustainer of life, lend us your strength,
And join our celebration of life.
Sacred Water, of deep oceans, cool lakes,
Still ponds, and coursing rivers,
Water of Life, Give us introspection,
And join our celebration.
Sacred Air, Mighty storm and gentle breeze,
Breath of Life, Bringer of Change,
Whisper to us the secrets of the Ancient Ones,
Join us in our celebration this night.
"The Circle is cast
We are between the worlds
Beyond the bounds of time
Where night and day
Birth and death
Joy and sorrow
Meet as one
In a time that is not a time
In a place that is not a place
On a day that is not a day
We stand at the threshold
Between the worlds
Before the veil of mysteries
May the Ancient Ones help and protect us
On our magickal journey."
"Dear Mother, we of the Faerie Faith do gather in ancient rite and renewal of spirit. We do now reaffirm ourselves to our faith."
"There should be a sensitivity, a belief of the spiritual reality behind what we refer to as "Nature."
"There should be a sincere love of Earth herself and a desire to communicate with her other children."
"There should be a belief in the individual life of this planet and a certainty that it permeates the whole world."
"It is time for the sharing to begin. Now is the time of learning, of remembering, the most ancient moon mysteries of the Goddess."
"This is the night of the new moon, a point of ending and beginning. We stand on the cusp between Willow and Hawthorn, between the darkness and the light. The gentle light of spring is gone, to be replaced by the hot sun of summer."
"Willow moon has been a time of death and difficult trials, resentments and burdens. It is now time to move forward, to leave behind the patterns of behavior that are no longer useful, and learn new ways, which will foster our spiritual and physical growth. We must let go of our resentments, set down our burdens, and learn from our trials. Just as our cousin, the spider, tears down her old web and constructs a newer, more effective one, so must we discard old habits and begin afresh."
"Tonight we enter into the influence of the Hawthorn Moon, a time traditionally of abstinence, cleansing and purification. The body's desires are strong at this time of year, but the message of the Hawthorn is that of balance. We must balance our yin and yang energies and with this balance form a union between them which will allow our inner child to be reborn. This inner spiritual child is the manifestation of our divine self and our connection with the Goddess."
"We have been poised, a hawk on a cliff, tense and ready to fly, but unsure of our direction. The trials and burdens we have been through in the last few months have caused us to doubt ourselves. And yet now is the time to set our course. To choose our true path and choose wisely. We must let go our fears and drop free our burdens that our flight may be true."
Four corners each take a basket around the circle widdershins and instructs each celebrant to take two willow leaves.
"The willow will aid us in letting go these burdens, that we may grow and heal and that our flight may be true."
"Please sit down. Make yourself comfortable."
Wait for everyone to get settled.
"Feel the earth supporting you. Feel the water in your body like cool flowing streams. Feel the air surrounding you, filling you, every breath with life. Feel the fire in your spirit. Feel the embrace of the Goddess, for she is within us and all things.
"Hold one of your willow leaves in your left hand. Now think on all the trials you have been through these last months."
"Let them go into the leaf."
"Now, think of the habits you no longer need. Those patterns that keep you back, limiting you and hindering your spiritual and physical growth."
"Let them go into the leaf."
"Now, think of the resentments you harbor. You can not move forward on your path until you have freed yourself of these negative, unproductive feelings."
"Let them go into the leaf."
At direction of centers, corners say:
Stand Up!! (loudly)
After all are standing, tell people that the corners will lead them to the fire cauldron, where they will put the Willow leaf they have dumped everything into. They are to hold onto the other Willow leaf, though.
Centers and corners begin chant:
"Willow! Willow! Hear my plea!
Take these things away from me!
I bind them here within your leaf!
I give them up for you to keep!
"With cauldron fire I am set free!
repeat over and over, end with
"Willow! Willow! Hear my plea!"
At this time the four corners begin to lead participants to the fire cauldron, starting with the person to their left, where they are instructed to put the leaf into the fire.
When all are finished and have resumed their places, say:
"The willow has taken our burdens, but the greater gift that the willow may share with us is that of a catalyst. The willow will aid us in transforming these burdens into more useful energies. Take the other leaf into your right hand. With the aid of this catalyst, we come to a state of readiness, waiting, emptiness."
Splatter each person with water from a willow wand.
"By stilling our inner thoughts, we gain the ability to go within, to transform ourselves. These burdens we have put aside will be our teachers, and will guide us through the energies of the coming moon, Hawthorn. Keep this leaf as a reminder of the lessons you have learned in Willow."
"In Hawthorn, our desires for physical gratification struggle with our desires for spiritual growth. In effect, a war between our High Self and our Low Self, what we want versus what we need. It is important, at this time, that we do not let our sexual urges deter us from our spiritual goals."
"We must be still. The Hawthorn's lesson takes us to the deepest places inside ourselves, teaching us our emotional, physical, and psychic limits and helping us to place and reinforce boundaries. Through inner stillness and quiet, we are able to hear the voices of our guides, telling us of the lessons to come as the seasons turn."
"The greatest guidance is the gift of the Hawthorn Moon. We were the anxious hawk, perched on a cliff, but Hawthorn transforms us into the Night Crow, who with new-found courage, at night, flies alone. We will face the darkness and uncertainty with courage, learning from our mistakes and misjudgements. We will not surrender our spiritual goals to the desires of our physical passions. We are not alone. The Goddess is our guide."
Water sharing - have 4 large goblets of water (swirled after circle is cast and swirled again after healing energies used). Persons at four corners will collect goblets from altar while HPS reads:
"Water is the life blood of the earth. And the Moon and Sun play the water of the earth as the heart courses the blood in our own veins. The earth's rivers and streams are her arteries and veins; her seas and oceans the womb from which new creation is made. The clouds and rain are the breath of the earth, which brings refreshed and renewed life."
"We of the Faerie Faith share of water to celebrate our unity with the living earth."
Four corners share water with each person in their quarter (clockwise).
"Share of my water, and know that as the rain, It is the bringer of life."
"Share of my water, and know that as the oceans and seas it is the womb of life."
"Share of my water, and know that as the clouds
It is the seeker, the traveler with a mission."
"I share of the water, and may all know that as the
streams and rivers, it is the shape changer,
the destroyer of old, and at the same time,
through change, the creatrix of new."
"Knowing well that water is the essence of life,
We have shared and become one,
And now as one, we offer our lives to She
who is the Mother of all life,
In service and in love."
HPS pours some water on the ground.
"As a family we have gathered to share
with the elements; earth, water, fire and air.
From this circle of mystery we now depart,
To live in the circle of our Mother's heart.
Through our efforts may all life be one,
In her love...
Do Freddie, ring bell:
"It is done!"