Sabbats

Recipes to spice up your Yule Celebration!

Yule is a wonderful time to bring family and friends together, and like our ancestors, plan out what our next year will look like.  There is nothing that feels better than sharing ideas, plans and love with family during these times.  These yule recipes will help you bring a little extra cheer to your table this year!

Mulled Wine 

This delicious recipe is best enjoyed in front of a roaring fire!

INGREDIENTS:

1 Bottle of Semi-sweet red wine (such as Merlot or Malbec)
1 Ounce of Mulling Spices
1/4 Cup of Honey
1/4 of Orange Juice
Garnish: 6″  Organic Cinnamon Sticks (optional)

DIRECTIONS:

  1. 1. Put the wine in a medium pot and bring it to a low simmer.
  2. 2. Once it is bubbling, add the Mulling Spices
  3. 3. Cover it, reduce heat to low and mull for approximately 2 hours
  4. 4. When you are ready to serve, strain out the Mulling Spices, then put it back in the pot and add the honey and orange juice.  Make sure the honey dissolves completely.
  5. 5. Serve with Garnish if needed – can be served either hot or cold – Makes approximately 4 cups!

Wassail 

In some Wassail traditions, the spiced cider was offered as an ancient honor to the trees. In wintertime, wassailers would prepare the traditional wassail – soaking pieces of bread, cake or toast in it – and travel from apple orchard to apple orchard in effort to ensure a good harvest for the coming year. Wassail-soaked pieces of bread or toast were then buried at the trees’ roots or hung in the trees’ branches to appease the tree spirits and feed them well until the next harvest.  This traditional wassail recipe features hard cider, sugar-roasted apples, brandy and sweet spices. It is a simple, old-fashioned recipe. We found this wonderful recipe by Jenny McGruther at nourishedkitchen.com!

Ingredients

4 small apples
¼ cup unrefined cane sugar
1 medium orange
13 Organic Whole Cloves
2 quarts hard apple cider
½ cup brandy
1 tbsp Organic Ginger Root Powder
1 tsp Organic Powdered Nutmeg
6 Organic Allspice Berries, Whole
2 to three  2-3″  Organic Cinnamon Sticks
6 large eggs, (separated)
toast, (optional, to serve with)

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Scoop out the core of the apples without fully penetrating the apple – a melon baller works well. Fill each apple with about a tablespoon of unrefined cane sugar.
  3. Place the apples in the baking sheet. Stud an orange with thirteen Organic Whole Cloves and place it in the baking sheet. Bake the apples and orange together for forty minutes.
  4. While the apples and orange bake, pour apple cider and brandy into a heavy-bottomed stock pot and warm over moderately low heat.
  5. Whisk in Organic Ginger Root Powder and Organic Powdered Nutmeg. Do not bring the wassail to a boil.
  6. Cut a small square of the butter muslin and place Organic Allspice Berries, Whole and  2-3″  Organic Cinnamon Sticks into the square; tie with 100% cotton cooking twine and float this sachet of spices in the wassail as it warms.
  7. Beat egg yolks until light in color and set aside. In a separate bowl, whip egg whites until stiff peaks form. Fold egg yolks into whites, then temper the eggs by slowly pouring one-half cup wassail into the eggs.
  8. Remove the spice sachet from the wassail and pour in the tempered eggs. Transfer to a punch bowl. Float baked apples and orange in the wassail and serve by the mug, topping each mug with a small slice of toast if desired.

Yule Plum Pudding

The Yule plum pudding is considered a symbol of good luck and success in the coming year, so why not turn it into an addition to your magical menu? As you stir up your batter, visualize your intent. Direct energy into the pudding, focusing on health, prosperity and good fortune in the coming new year!

 

INGREDIENTS

Fruit Mixture (To be made 4 days ahead)
1 pound seedless raisins
1 pound sultana raisins
1/2 pound currants
1 cup thinly sliced citron (can be replaced with grapefruit and lemon)
1 cup chopped candied peel
1 teaspoon Organic Cinnamon Powder
1/2 teaspoon Organic Mace (ground into powder)
1/2 teaspoon Organic Powdered Nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon Organic Clove Powder
1/4 teaspoon Organic Allspice Powder
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground Organic Black Pepper
1 pound finely chopped suet – powdery fine (can substitute with lard or vegetable shortening)
1 1/4 cups cognac

Pudding
1 1/4 pounds (approximately) fresh bread crumbs
1 cup scalded milk
1 cup sherry or port
12 eggs, well beaten
1 cup sugar
1 teaspoon salt
Cognac

PREPARATION

  1. Blend the fruits, citron, peel, spices and suet and place in a bowl or jar. Add 1/4 cup cognac, cover tightly and refrigerate for 4 days, adding 1/4 cup cognac each day.
  2. Soak the bread crumbs in milk and sherry or port.
  3. Combine the well-beaten eggs and sugar. Blend with the fruit mixture. Add salt and mix thoroughly.
  4. Put the pudding in buttered bowls or tins, filling them about 2/3 full. Cover with foil and tie it firmly.
  5. Steam for 6-7 hours. Uncover and place in a 250°F. oven for 30 minutes. Add a dash of cognac to each pudding, cover with foil and keep in a cool place.
  6. To use, steam again for 2-3 hours and unmold. Sprinkle with sugar; add heated cognac.
  7. Ignite and bring to the table. Serve with hard sauce or cognac sauce.

We hope you enjoy these recipes! We would love to see the pictures of what you created!!

 

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Bonfire for Beltane!

Although bonfires tend to be popular in all ancient pagan practices, Beltane is the time of year when it seems the most fitting!  There are many ways to incorporate a Bonfire into your ritual – and it doesn’t even have to be large.  Sure, if you have the space and a nice fire pit, a big Beltane fire is idea – but if not, there are other ways to still bring the feel of a Bonfire into your celebration!

Portable Bonfires

These can be great if you have no permanent fire pit in your backyard or if you want to be able to travel with your fire pit.  They can range in price from under $20 all the way up to over $300 – so there is an option to fit any budget.  You can purchase these at any home improvement store or even make your own! This blog tells you step by step how to make one out of a flower pot!: Create a Fire pit out of Flower Pot!

Please remember that no matter what you decide to do, be safe! Here are some fire tips from a former firefighter to help you have a fun and safe experience: Fire pit safety tips

Indoor Cauldron Fire

If your only option is to be indoors, you can still have the fire experience with an indoor cauldron fire!  You will need the following items

  • Cast-Iron Cauldron – mine is quite small, about 4″ in diameter
  • Epsom Salts – easy to find at the supermarket or pharmacy
  • Rubbing Alcohol – 70% isopropyl (safer) or 90% isopropyl (hotter)
  • Fire-Proof surface, preferably not heat conductive
  • Long Wooden Matches

It is best to use a cast-iron cauldron, since one won’t be too hard to get and it can withstand the heat. Don’t use aluminum, since it sometimes melts or can even catch on fire. Never make an indoor fire in a cauldron that is painted, since burning or even very hot paint will produce dangerous fumes.

Use half (by volume, not weight) alcohol and epsom salts.  Always put the cauldron on a fireproof surface (such as a hearth, other tile surface, metal, etc.) and make sure that the only nearby objects are reasonably heat-resistant. Taper candles, if placed too close, will bend or even melt. Votives in glass holders work better.

Always keep a bucket of water nearby in case things somehow get out of hand. A big box of baking soda also works well. Let the cauldron burn out by itself (how long this takes depends on the size of the cauldron and how much fuel you have put into it), wait till it is cool, and then soak the inside in water to loosen the grayish mass of salts that’s been fused together by the fire. After letting it soak overnight it’s not too hard to clean.

If it’s necessary to put the cauldron out suddenly, covering it with a fireproof lid is the easiest and least-messy method, but be careful not to burn yourself while putting the lid on. One of those big leather work gloves might be good to keep around.

Now that you have a fire, what can you do?

Once you have your fire pit – there are many different ways to incorporate this into your ritual!

  • – Use herbs – you can burn any herbs in your fire pit.  If you are using an indoor fire pit be sure to only burn a very small amount at a time so that you don’t have an out of control fire.
  • – Use lava rocks to help keep your fire going. Click here to see how to use lava rocks.
  • – Fires can symbolize messages moving up to the universe to to deity – they can also symbolize the cleansing or banishing of bad things and bad energies.
  • – Fires can make the start a new phase in life – can be used at the start of a project, symbolizing burning down the old to pave the way for the new.

 

What are the Nine Sacred Woods?

The nine sacred woods – or nine sacred woods of the bonfire are part of a traditional Celtic ceremony.  They represented the first nine tress in the Celtic calendar and are generally listed in the long version of the Wiccan Rede by Doreen Valiente.  Over the years, this has been changed to a Nine Sacred Herbs incense, which you can make yourself or purchase from us here: Nine Sacred Woods Incense.  This blend is a nice way to add a Celtic touch to any bonfire celebration!

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Mabon Incense Recipe

Just in time for the season, you can make your mabon special by either purchasing one of our blends or making your own! For those of you that have never made one, here is an idea!

You will need:

2 parts sandalwood Powder
2 parts White Oak Bark
1 part rosemary
1 part cinnamon chips
1 part Apple Chips
1 part Frankincense

Grind them well in your mortar and pestle (or you can use a coffee grinder) and voilà! Your incense is ready to be burned on Charcoal!

Here is how you can burn loose incense on charcoal

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Sabbat Ritual Guide

This is a complete listing of the Sabbats – broken down by Month. This guide is available on our online BoS and I wanted to include it here as a reference. Enjoy!

January – None

February – Imbolc – 02/02

March – Ostara – 03/20

April – None

May
 – Beltane – 05/01
June – Litha – 06/21
July – None

August
 – Lammas/Lughnasadh – 08/02
September – Mabon/Autumn Equinox – 09/21
October – Samhain – 10/31

November – None

December – Yule – 12/21

 The Wheel of the YearThe Wheel of the Year
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Imbolc/Candlemas Lore

Imbolc/Candlemas Lore

Imbolc is one of the four principal festivals of the Celtic calendar, celebrated either at the beginning of February or at the first local signs of Spring. Originally dedicated to the goddess Brighid, in the Christian period it was adopted as St Brigid’s Day. In Scotland the festival is also known as Latha Fhèill Brìghde, in Ireland as Lá Fhéile Bríde, and in Wales as Gwyl Ffraed.

While in the Northern Hemisphere Imbolc is conventionally celebrated on 1 February, in the Southern hemisphere it is sometimes celebrated on the calendar date, but those who see it primarily as a celebration of spring may move it to 1 August.Fire and purification is considered by many to be an important aspect of this festival. Brigid (also known as Brighid, Bríde, Brigit, Brìd) is the Goddess of poetry, healing and smithcraft. As both goddess and saint she is also associated with holy wells, sacred flames, and healing. To some, the lighting of candles and fires represents the return of warmth and the increasing power of the Sun over the coming months.

The holiday is a festival of the hearth and home, and a celebration of the lengthening days and the early signs of spring. Rituals often involve hearthfires, special foods, divination or simply watching for omens (whether performed in all seriousness or as children’s games), a great deal of candles, and perhaps an outdoor bonfire if the weather permits. If you also want to play online casino games, check out this sources for more information.

This season belongs to Brigid, the Celtic goddess who in later times became revered as a Christian saint. Originally, her festival on February 1 was known as Imbolc or Oimelc, two names which refer to the lactation of the ewes, the flow of milk that heralds the return of the life-giving forces of spring. Later, the Catholic Church replaced this festival with Candlemas Day on February 2, which is dedicated to the Virgin Mary and features candlelight processions. The powerful figure of Brigid the Light-Bringer overlights both pagan and Christian celebrations.In keeping with the policy of the Catholic Church to subsume pagan festivals into Christian feast-days, the Day of Bride became equated with Candlemas on February 2nd, the feast of the Purification of the Blessed Virgin Mary. Certainly, the service most used for this day in the medieval church made much of this symbolism, playing upon images of the appearance of divine light in the darkness of human sin, of renewal and rebirth of light in the dark time of the year, and of the new light of heaven come to transform an old world.In Britain, Candlemas was celebrated with a festival of lights. In the dark and gloomy days of February, the shadowy recesses of medieval churches twinkled brightly as each member of the congregation carried a lighted candle in procession around the church, to be blessed by the priest. Afterwards, the candles were brought home to be used to keep away storms, demons and other evils.

This custom lasted in England until it was banned in the Reformation for promoting the veneration of magical objects. Even so, the symbol of the lighted candles had too strong a hold on the popular imagination to be entirely cast aside.

Finally, traces of the festival of the growing light can even be traced to modern America in the Groundhog Day custom on February 2.  If the groundhog sees his shadow on this morning, it means there will be six more weeks of winter. The custom comes directly from Europe, and Scotland in particular, where an old couplet goes:

If Candlemas Day is bright and clear,
there’ll be two winters in the year.

Various other names for this Greater Sabbat are Imbolgc Brigantia (Caledonni), Imbolic (Celtic), Disting (Teutonic, Feb 14th), Lupercus (Strega), St. Bridget’s Day (Christian), Candlemas, Candlelaria (Mexican), the Snowdrop Festival. The Festival of Lights, or the Feast of the Virgin. All Virgin and Maiden Goddesses are honored at this time.

Deities of Imbolc

All Virgin/Maiden Goddesses, Brighid, Aradia, Athena, Inanna, Gaia, and Februa, and Gods of Love and Fertility, Aengus Og, Eros, and Februus.

Herbs of Imbolc

Angelica, Basil, Bay Laurel, Blackberry, Celandine, Coltsfoot, Heather, Iris, Myrrh, Tansy, Violets, and all white or yellow flowers.

Incense of Imbolc

Basil, Bay, Wisteria, Cinnamon, Violet, Vanilla, Myrrh. Imbolc/Candlemas

Incense Recipe

3 parts Frankincense
2 parts Dragon’s Blood
2 parts Sandalwood
1 part Cinnamon
a few drops Red Wine

Stones of Imbolc

Amethyst, Bloodstone, Garnet, Ruby, Onyx, Turquoise.

Foods of Imbolc:

Pumpkin seeds, Sunflower seeds, Poppyseed Cakes, muffins, scones, and breads, all dairy products, Peppers, Onions, Garlic, Raisins, Spiced Wines and Herbal Teas.

Imbolc Recipies

Honey Cakes

By Terry Paajanen

Little fried cakes, dipped in honey and nutmeg. A delightful sweet Imbolc treat.

INGREDIENTS:

1/2 cup Riesling wine
1 egg
2/3 cup flour
1 cup honey
2 tbs sugar
1/8 tsp cinnamon
1/8 tsp nutmeg
Dash of salt

PREPARATION:

Beat the egg together with the wine. In another mixing bowl, sift together the flour, cinnamon, sugar and salt. Add the flour mixture to the egg mixture. Stir until blended through. Let sit for 30 minutes.

In another small bowl, mix the honey and nutmeg. In a skillet, heat up about a 1/2 inch of oil. Drop a tablespoon of batter into the oil and fry until golden brown. Drain off the oil, and dip into the honey mixture.

Poppy Seed Bread
By Terry Paajanen

Seeds are often used in any Imbolc recipe. Here is a simple seed bread that is just delicious.

INGREDIENTS:

5 eggs
3 3/4 cup flour
2 cups half n half
1 cup vegetable oil
2 1/2 cups sugar
1 1/3 cup poppy seeds
7 tsp baking powder
1 1/2 tsp vanilla

PREPARATION:

Preheat your oven to 350F. With a hand mixer, blend together the poppy seeds, oils, eggs, sugar, vanilla and half n half. Add flour and baking powder. Mix together on high speed for 30 seconds. Pour into 2 greased loaf pans.

Bake for one hour or until tops of loaves are brown.

Returning Sun Spice Bread
By Akasha

1 1/4 cup flour
1/8 cup poppyseeds
2 tsp. baking powder
3/4 cup raisins, plain or golden
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 cup butter/margarine
1/2 tsp. ground ginger
3/4 cup Karo golden corn syrup
1/2 cup light brown sugar
4 tbs. milk
1 large egg, beaten
1 tsp. mixed spices**

**Equal parts of cinnamon, nutmeg, and allspice.

Sift the flour, soda, and baking powder into a non-metal bowl. Add the mixed spice and ginger. Next add the brown sugar and raisins. Mix. Make a well in the center of the flour mixture. In a small sauce pan, melt the butter and the syrup over a low heat, then pour liquid into the well in the middle of the flour mixture. Add the beaten egg and the milk, and mix very well. Pour into a well greased 2-lb loaf pan and bake in a preheated oven at 325 degrees for 40-50 minutes. This bread can be made the night before as it improves with age. Makes 8-10 servings.

Imbolc Ritual Cake
By Akahsha

13/4 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup water
3/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup vegetable oil
2 tbs. poppyseeds
1 tbs. grated lemon peel
1 tsp. baking soda
2 tbs. lemon juice
1/2 tsp. salt
powdered sugar

This is all done in one pan, so clean up is a breeze! Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Mix flour, sugar, poppyseeds, baking soda, and salt with a fork in an ungreased 9″x9″x2″ baking pan. Stir in the remaining ingredients, except the powdered sugar. Bake 35-40 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center of cake comes out clean, and the top is golden brown. Remove from oven and cool. Sprinkle with powdered sugar. Makes 8 servings.

Lamb Stew
By Terry Paajanen

A hearty Irish lamb stew that’s pretty easy to make.

INGREDIENTS:

1 1/2 lbs bacon, diced
6 lbs boneless lamb shoulder, cut into 2-inch pieces
1 large onion, chopped
1/2 cup water
4 cups beef stock
1 cup white wine
4 cups carrots, diced
2 large onions, diced
3 potatoes
1 tsp thyme
2 bay leaves
2 tsp white sugar
1/2 tsp black pepper
1/2 cup flour
1/2 tsp salt
3 cloves garlic, minced

PREPARATION:

Saute the bacon in a large skillet, and then set aside (save the meat and the fat). In a bowl, coat the lamb meat with salt, pepper and flour. Brown in the bacon fat. Remove the lamb from the pan and put in a large stock pot.

Leave about a quarter cup of fat in the pan. Saute the garlic and one chopped onion until soft. Add 1/2 cup of water to the pan to deglaze then pour pan contents into the stock pot along with the bacon, beef stock and sugar. Simmer for 1 1/2 hours or until tender. Add the rest of the ingredients and simmer for another 20 minutes.

Imbolc Altar

Imbolc is a festival of light, reflecting the lengthening of the day and the hope of spring. White, the color of light and milk, appears predominantly. Use a white altar cloth, add white and yellow flowers and candles.  Use votives or tea lights in glass jars that the kids can decorate to get them to participate. Be sure to use extra caution with candles if you have little ones. You may even choose to abstain from lighting them altogether and just keep them on the altar unlit for symbolic reasons. If candles are absolutely out of the question, use strings of holiday lights or make candles out construction paper.

Colors of Imbolc

White, Pink, Red, Yellow, lt. Green, Brown.

Spellwork for Imbolc

Imbolc is good for psychic work: still the dark time of the year, but looking toward spring. It’s also a good time to make your space hospitable for such work, banishing old energy to clear the way for new. Traditionally, witches purify themselves and their space at Imbolc. Any kind of cleansing or banishing will do, but consider ones that include fire and water, sacred to Brighid. Once purified, you’re ready to go further; at Imbolc, covens initiate new witches.
The spark of summer dances in the future now; Imbolc is a good time to seek inspiration, especially for healers and smiths of words or metal.  Imbolc is a white time, burning with inspiration and protection, cool with healing and purification. Prophesy flares, painting luster on the dark. Light your candle, call on Brighid, and know that under the snow the seeds of spring stir.

This is a time for purity, growth and Renewal. Spells that celebrate the Reunion of the Goddess and the God, fertility, and dispensing of the old and making way for the new are appropriate during this time.

Imbolc Activities

* This is traditionally a time of purification — clean your house! If you have any Christmas greenery lingering, burn it now. Make your own Brighid’s crosses and hang them up, especially in the kitchen where her influence can bless your food.

* Put out food — cake, buttered bread and milk will do — outside your door: Brighid and her cow walk through the neighborhood tonight, and will appreciate your offering.

* Leave a silk ribbon on your doorstep for Brighid to bless: It can then be used for healing purposes.

* Meditate upon what you would like to see grow in health and strength this year: for yourself, your family, your community, the Earth, and ask for Bride’s blessing upon your prayers.

* Candle Lighting, Stone Gatherings, Snow Hiking and Searching for Signs of Spring, Making of Brideo’gas and Bride’s Beds, Making Priapic Wands, Decorating Ploughs, Feasting, and Bon Fires maybe lit.

* Light a candle and burn sandalwood incense.

* Make dream pillows for everyone in the family (great to do with kids!)

* On Imbolc Eve, leave buttered bread in a bowl indoors for the faeries who travel with the Lady of Greenwood. Next day, dispose of it as the “essence” will have been removed.

* Place three ears of corn on the door as a symbol of the Triple GOddess and leave until Ostara.

* Cleanse the area where you do card readings or scrying with a censor burning rosemary or vervain, and say:

“By the power of this smoke I wash away the negative
influences that this place be cleansed for the Lady and her babe.”

 

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Imbolc/Candlemas Rituals

Simple Imbolc/Candlemas Ritual

Imbolc is a festival of lights to herald the coming of spring. A popular Imbolc activity is to prepare seed for spring planting. Lay out the altar with your regular altar tools and add these extras: a bowl of earth with a seed of some sort, as many white tapers on the altar as is safe, and seasonal decorations, such as evergreens, sun wheels, or a cup of melted snow. The altar cloth shall blue, and the altar candles shall be green and white.Cast the sacred circle, and invoke the God and the Goddess. Then bring the seed and dish of earth or planting pot to the front of the altar. Hold the seed in your hand, knowing that it is the beginnings of life. Bless it in this manner:

In my hands I hold the seed of beginnings,
of life, wisdom, and of coming spring.
I ask the God and the Goddess to place a blessing on it
so that it may prosper in the coming season.

Think of something you want. It could be a request of the God and the Goddess, or something you want from yourself. Concentrate on this as you hold the seed.

With this seed I plant a request,
and hope that with careful nurturing and daily care,
my goals may come to fruition in time.

Having said this, place the seed in the soil and cover it. What is to be done with it after this is up to you. Since the action is, for the most part, symbolic, you may choose to throw it away(a waste of a perfectly good seed, if you ask me) but many find it useful to grow the seed and keep the plant around as a reminder.Hold the simple feast, and then you may do any magic or seasonal activities that you had planned for this evening. One Imbolc tradition is to weave corn dollies. Banish the sacred circle.

References:

http://www.tryskelion.com/imbolc.htm


Imbolc/Candlemas Ritual
By Michael Hall

On your altar should be placed a circle of 13 stones and, within the circle of stones, a circle of 13 candles. Within the circle of candles should be spread some maize – i.e. corn meal – and in that a waxen female candle to symbolize the Goddess on your altar. On the eastern side of the altar should be placed a small sheaf of grain with a candle inserted inside it.

You should dress in your usual ceremonial garb for Magickal rites or skyclad, as you prefer.

Retire to bathe in salt-water (use sea salt) before the ritual. As you do so picture the water cleansing the soul and spirit, just as it cleanses the body. When you have dressed, anoint yourself with a holy oil. When you have prepared yourself, sit in a dim quiet place and light a candle – ONE THAT IS NOT BEING USED IN THE RITES – and meditate on how at this time of year the Goddess in her fiery aspect AS LIGHT was welcomed back into the Temples and the Homes of the land.

Take this candle and walk slowly to your altar. Place it in the circle of the 13 candles. Then light the two altar candles, which are separate from the circle of lights also, and the incense. (Incense should be stick or powdered incense on charcoal in a swinging burner.) Then light all the quarter candles in the 4 directions, starting in the east and going clockwise. Cast your circle in the usual manner, but Invoke the Goddess with the following:

“Sacred womb, giver of the secrets of Life,
Mother of all that exists in the Universe,
I ask your guardianship of this gathering
and your assistance in my work.
I am gathered in celebration of your gifts and my work is most holy.
SO MOTE IT BE”

and Invoke the God in the following manner:

“Fire of the sky, guardian of all that exists in the Universe,
I ask your guardianship of this gathering
and your assistance in my work.
I am gathered in celebration of your gifts and my work is most holy.
SO MOTE IT BE”

(continue with the circle casting if it is not already finished) Light the 13 candles and then the Goddess candle in the center and say:

“Warm and quickening Light
awaken and bring forth beauty
for thou art my pleasure and my bounty
LORD and LADY
OSiRIS AND ISIS”

(or you may substitute whatever names your circle uses for the God and the Goddess – or those you personally prefer)

Reflect a moment on the coming of the light and offer up the incense. say:

“O ancient Ones
Timeless Goddess and Sacred King
who art the heralds of springtime and it’s bounties
be with me now in celebration
Hail to Osiris and Isis
Harvest giver and blessed Lady
Let this be a time and a place sacred to your power and your beauty
SO MOTE IT BE”

Light the candle in the sheaf of grain and hold it up with the loaf of bread in the other hand and say: (or the cakes – whatever you or your tradition uses for the cakes and wine/juice ceremony)

“My Lord and Lady,
as the seed becomes the grain,
so the grain becomes the bread,
Mark the everlasting value of our seasons and their changes.”

Break a piece of the bread or cakes off and burn it as an offering in the central candle. Then say:

“In the deepest Icy Winter the seed of the Earth lies deep within the womb of the Great Mother. The Spring brings the heat of the Father and with their joining comes new life. The completion of the cycle brings food to the children of the world. As I taste the food I shall know the wisdom of the cycles and be blessed with the food of wisdom throughout my life”

Consecrate cakes and wine/juice in the usual manner and partake of them, but first raise your chalice or drinking horn and say:

“Hail to thee ISIS
Hail to thee Osiris
For thou art blessed”

After this commune in meditation with the Lord and lady for a while, then close the circle in your usual manner.

References:
http://www.witchway.net/ritual/imbsol.html

distributed by PAN – the Psychic Awareness Network – 1703-362-1139


Detailed Imbolc/Candlemas Ritual By Akasha

Tools:

In addition to your magick tools, you will need:

  • A White Altar Cloth
  • Light Green Taper Goddess Candle
  • Light Yellow Taper God Candle
  • 13 White 4″ Stick Candles
  • Brideo’ga*
  • Small Woven Basket with White Flowers
  • Pentacle Candle Wheel
  • Handful of Acorns
  • Cauldron
  • Snow/Crushed Ice
  • Small White Pillar Candle
  • Potpourri Holder
  • Tea Lite
  • Basil, Bay, Heather Flowers, Cinnamon and Vanilla Potpourri Blend
  • Long Wooden Stick Matches

Preparation:

Sweep area, moving in deosil direction. Outline your circle with white cord Angelica leaves. Place Pentacle Candle Wheel in the center of altar. Place the lt. green taper Goddess candle to the top left of altar and the lt. yellow taper God candle to the top right of altar. Put the white flowers in the basket as bedding for the Bride’s Bed, then place the Brideo’ga atop the flowers. Place the basket in front of the Goddess candle, to the left of the Pentacle Candle Wheel. Place the acorns in front of the God candle, to the right of the Pentacle Wheel. Place the tea lite in the bottom of potpourri holder, and put holder at front center of the alter. Place white pillar candle in the middle of the cauldron, fill cauldron about 1″-2″ with snow or crushed ice, and position on floor in front of altar. Put the container with potpourri where it can be reached easily. Place the rest of your tools and props according to personal preference. Bathe or shower for purification. Ground and center. When ready, put on some soothing music associated with this Sabbat and your ritual.

Cast circle by holding out your right hand and tracing over the cord or leaves in a clockwise direction. As you trace over the outline envision flames of pure white rising up along the perimeter. When the beginning and the end join the circle is complete. Step up to the cauldron and light the white pillar candle, saying:

“Amidst the darkness the Lady is stirring,
Gently awakening from frozen dreams,
All the world has awaited this moment The return of the Maiden,
And Her promise of oncoming Spring.”

Call Quarters. As this is a time to honor Mother Earth as she wakes from her winter’s recovery of giving rebirth to the Sun King at Yule, start with North, the element Earth. Pick up the container of potpourri, step up to the altar and pour some into the holder, saying:

“Powers of Earth, the Maiden awakens!
Come join the circle and share in the light.”

Put the container back where it was. Light the white candle at the North point of the Pentacle Candle Wheel. Continue, by waving your hand over the potpourri as if to create a breeze on which to carry the scent, saying:

“Powers of Air, the Maiden awakens!
Come join the circle and share in the light.”

Light the white candle at the East point of the Pentacle Candle Wheel. Light the tea candle in the bottom of the potpourri holder, saying:

“Powers of Fire, the Maiden awakens!
Come join the circle and share in the light.”

Light the white candle at the South point of the Pentacle Candle Wheel. Pour some water into the holder with the potpourri, saying:

“Powers of Water, the Maiden awakens!
Come join the circle and share in the light.”

Light the white candle at the West point of the Pentacle Candle Wheel. Remove the white candle from the top point of the Pentacle. Since Akasha is the omnipresent, it need not be invoked. Light the candle and invoke the Goddess and the God by lighting the lt. green Goddess candle and the lt. yellow God candle with the white candle. Place the white candle back in the top point of the Pentacle Candle Wheel, saying:

“Be with me now, oh Ancients, eternal,
Hear now my prayers, hopes and dreams.

The Goddess has wakened, once more as the Maiden
By loving caresses from the strengthened Sun King.”

Light the inner cross points of the Pentacle Candle Wheel, starting with the cross point to the right of the North point. Light all 5 cross points in succession, saying:

“The Earth now grows warmer, as the Wheel again turns
And as each passing day adds strength, To the Sun King’s rays
The Maiden, of his gift of life, now silently does yearn.”

Take a couple of the acorns from in front of the God candle and place them in the Bride’s Bed with the Brideo’ga. Light the three aspects of the Goddess candles. All aspects are white because She is the Triple Goddess appearing as the Maiden, pure, and renewed. Step back from the altar and contemplate the light that is brought about by the re-union of the God and the Goddess saying:

“Behold the God and Goddess,
Lord of the Forest and his Bride,
Once again the Earth is blessed
With life anew inside.
Seeds shall soon begin to sprout
And creatures shall young bear
For this is the Promise, the Cycle of Life
That is born of the love They share.”

Now is the time for meditation and any spellworkings. Spellworkings associated with Imbolc include those for fertility, defining and focusing on goals for the future, organization, health, and protection. Next, celebrate with Cakes and Ale (Poppyseed Cakes* and Spiced Tea*) Ceremony, saving some for the wee Folkes, outside. Thank the God and Goddess for Their presence snuff their candles. Thank and release the Quarters, saying:

“Though you leave this circle, tonight,
Water, Fire, Air, and Earth
Your symbols shall linger on a while
Blessing my home and hearth.
The herbs that scent this room tonight,
Were chosen with loving care,
To bless me, my family and my friends,
And my sisters and brothers everywhere.”

Snuff each of the white candles at the directional points of the Pentacle Candle Wheel, starting with the candle at the top point first, then the West point and working in a widdershins direction. Snuff the inner cross point candles also in a widdershins direction. Finally snuff the three aspects of the Goddess candles. Step back from the altar and face the cauldron with the white pillar candle still burning brightly saying:

“I honor Thee, Maiden, most blessed Bride
As your candle burns through this night
And thank you for the renewed life you offer us all
As you emerge from the dark to the light.”

Release the circle. Clean up, place the cauldron from the floor onto the middle of the alter. Let the candle burn out by itself. Place the potpourri in a spot where its scent and blessings fill the house. You are done.

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Ostara/Spring Equinox Rituals

Ostara Light and Dark Ritual
(author unknown)

Purpose

To acknowledge the balance between light and dark; to revere the growing strength and energy of the Sun who is now strong enough to conquer darkness; to acknowledge the time of new beginnings; to bless new goals and projects; to thankfully reflect on the gifts of fertility

Tools

Staff, Athame, 4 sticks of incense, staff, blanket, ritual clothing, BOS, 1 hard-boiled egg, cauldron or bowl filled with water, fresh cut flowers

Time: Sunrise

Ritual

  1. Lay blanket on ground.
  2. Arrange the BOS, egg, cauldron, flowers, and athame on the blanket facing the Sun (East).
  3. Plant incense into the ground to represent the 4 quarters and light it.
  4. While standing, ground and center using the staff, then sit on the blanket
  5. Either mentally or verbally state the purpose of the ritual.
  6. Slowly, pull the petals from the flowers and place them in the cauldron while reflecting on the meaning of Ostara.
  7. For each goal or new project you want to begin working on:
  8. Hold a flower in your hands and focus on the end desire

o Break the stem off (put in a pile)
o Place the flower in the cauldron

  1. Stand up with your egg and throw it into the air as high as you can and let it fall to the ground. It is said that the higher the egg goes, the better your luck will be. Then sit back down.
  2. Peel the dirt and shell fragments off and put them in a pile with the stems.
  3. Eat the egg and let yourself become energized with healing and positive energy. It is said that if the egg is eaten at sunrise, you will gain much luck, health and happiness.
  4. Use the athame to dig a hole.
  5. Bury the stems and eggshells. This is an offering to the Earth, thanking her for fertility and the gifts she presents us with daily.
  6. Grab the cauldron of flowers and heave the contents upward and outward as hard as you can to bless your new projects and to return to the Earth that which is hers. Don’t be afraid to laugh or shout with joy. The season of wonder is now beginning.
    Settle back down on the blanket and ground leftover energy.
  7. Clean-up

Ostara Solitary Ritual
By Asiya

Needed

Paper and pen
Plant pot filled with soil
A large plant or flower seed
Light green candle

Ritual

Place the plant pot on the floor next to the left side of the altar. Place the paper, pen, and seed on the altar pentacle. Cast the circle. Ring the bell three times. Say:

“The Goddess has freed Herself from the icy prison of winter.
Now is the greening, when the fragrance of flowers drifts on the breeze.
The Maiden displays her beauty through colorful spring flowers and their sweet aromas.
The Sun wakes from His long winter’s nap.
The God stretches and rises, eager in His youth, bursting with the promise of summer.
I welcome thee, beautiful spring!”

Light the light green candle. Say:

“Springtime is seedtime. Now is the time to plant that which I wish to come to flower.
Spring brings hope and joy; expectations for desires realized; and inspiration for new ideas.
Life is brought into balance and I am reborn with the earth’s renewal.
Now the darkness of winter and the past is cast behind.
I look only to that which lies ahead and what I wish to bring forth.”

 

Sit in front of the altar and meditate on what seed of an idea you would like to plant, to grow into an opportunity. It could be a skill or personal quality you’d like to acquire, or an opportunity to do or create something. When you have decided what desire you’d like to nurture in the coming year, write it down on the paper. Stand up and say:

“Lord and Lady, receive this seed.
Let it germinate in my mind and heart.
Let it prosper and grow into maturity,
For I will care for it and encourage it in Your names.”

 

Light the paper from the light green candle, holding it so that as it burns, the ashes fall into the soil in the plant pot. With the athame, mix the ashes into the soil. Pick up the plant seed and concentrate on it and your desire. Place the seed in the center of the pot and close the soil over on top of it. Water it with blessed (“Holy”) water. Say:

“This seed I place in the womb of the earth
That it may become a part of that earth,
A part of life and a part of me.”

Ring the bell three times.

Cakes and Ale.
Close the circle.

Place the plant in a room you go into frequently, and take care of it whenever needed, knowing that as it grows and blossoms so too will your desire grow and blossom.

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Ostara/Spring Equinox Lore

Spring or The Vernal Equinox
Provided By: Lady Celestial Storm

Also known as: Lady Day. Spring Equinox or Alban Eiler (Druidic)

As spring reaches its midpoint, night and day stand in perfect balance, with light on the increase. The young Sun God now celebrates a hierogamy (sacred marriage) with the young Maiden Goddess, who conceives. In nine months, she will again become the Great Mother. It is a time of great fertility, new growth, and newborn animals. The next full moon (a time of increased births) is called the Ostara and is sacred to Eostre the Saxon Lunar Goddess of fertility (from whence we get the word estrogen, whose two symbols were the egg and the rabbit. The Christian religion adopted these emblems for Easter which is celebrated on the first Sunday after the first full moon following the vernal equinox. The theme of the conception of the Goddess was adapted as the Feast of the Annunciation, occurring on the alternative fixed calendar date of March 25 Old Lady Day, the earlier date of the equinox. Lady Day may also refer to other goddesses (such as Venus and Aphrodite), many of whom have festivals celebrated at this time.


Deities

Appropriate Deities for Ostara include all Youthful and Virile Gods and Goddesses; Sun Gods, Mother Goddesses, Love Goddesses, Moon Gods and Goddesses, and all Fertility Deities. Some Ostara Deities to mention by name here include Persephone, Blodeuwedd, Eostre, Aphrodite, Athena, Cybele, Gaia, Hera, Isis, Ishtar, Minerva, Venus, Robin of the Woods, the Green Man, Cernunnos, Lord of the Greenwood, The Dagda, Attis, The Great Horned God, Mithras, Odin, Thoth, Osiris, and Pan.


Magic

Key actions to keep in mind during this time in the Wheel of the Year include openings and new beginnings. Spellwork for improving communication and group interaction are recommended, as well as fertility and abundance. Ostara is a good time to start putting those plans and preparations you made at Imbolc into action. Start working towards physically manifesting your plans now. The most common colors associated with Ostara are lemon yellow, pale green and pale pink. However, also appropriate colors include grass green, all pastels, Robin’s egg blue, violet, and white. Stones to use during the Ostara celebration include aquamarine, rose quartz, and moonstone. Animals associated with Ostara are rabbits and snakes. Mythical beasts associated with Ostara include unicorns, merpeople, and Pegasus.


Traditional Foods:

  • Leafy green vegetables, Dairy foods, Nuts such as Pumpkin, Sunflower and Pine. Flower Dishes and Sprouts.
  • Ostara Recipe

Mint Tea Cakes

4 C. Flour
6 Eggs, beaten
11/2 C. Granulated Sugar
Crumbled, dried Mint leaves or 1/8 t. Mint flavoring
1 Quart Milk
2/3 C. softened Butter

Glaze:
1/2 C. Powdered Sugar
2 T. Milk

* Preheat oven to 350 F.
* Cream butter and sugar together until light.
* Beat eggs until very light. Add to butter and sugar mixture.
* Add mint flavoring – taste. Do you want the mint flavoring stronger?
* Add milk and mix well.
* Add flour and mix well.
* Pour into mini-muffin tins to fill each cup to halfway. Bake for approximately 10 minutes.
* Allow to cool completely. Remove from muffin tin.
* Leave tea cakes “upside down” and drizzle with glaze. Garnish with candied violets


Herbs and Flowers

  • Lily of the valley
  • Tansy
  • Lavender
  • Marjoram
  • Thyme
  • Tarragon
  • Lilac
  • Violets
  • Lemon balm
  • Dogwood
  • Honeysuckle
  • Oakmoss
  • Orrisroot
  • Sunflower seeds
  • Rose hips or petals
  • Oak
  • Elder Flower
  • Willow
  • Crocus
  • Daffodil
  • Jonquil
  • Tulip
  • Broom (Scotch or Iris)
  • Meadowsweet
  • Acorn
  • Trefoil (purple clover)

Incense:

  • Scents: Jasmine, Rose, Strawberry, Floral of any type.
  • Ostara Incense Recipe (By Scott Cunningham)
    2 Parts Frankincense
    1 Part Benzoin
    1 Part Dragon’s Blood
    1/2 Part Nutmeg
    1/2 part Violet flowers (or few drops violet oil)
    1/2 Part Orange peel
    1/2 Part Rose petals

Stones

  • Clear quartz crystal
  • Rose quartz
  • Agate
  • Lapis lazuli
  • Amazonite
  • Garnet

Altar

  • Candles should be light green.
  • Incense
  • Decorate the circle with spring wildflowers.
  • Place an earthenware or wooden bowl containing soil or a large seed of some kind on the altar.

Ideas

  • On Ostara Eve, light a purple or violet candle and burn patchouli incense. Carry them both through the house, and say: Farewell to wintry spirits and friends; on morrow we greet the spirits of spring. Our blessings to thee as your way we wend; and merry we’ll meet next winter again. Blow out the candle and say: Merry meet, merry part, and merry meet again.
  • Plan a fertility ritual for your garden. Bury an Ostara egg in the east corner of your garden, or one egg for each direction, or dig an entire circle for them (depends on how much you hate egg-salad)
  • Planting seeds or starting a Magical Herb Garden
  • Taking a long walk in nature with no intent other than reflecting on the Magic of nature and our Great Mother and her bounty.
  • At this time, witches cast spells for careers, relationships, and love. It’s a time for planting new ideas. Seek harmony and balance in the incredible energy of the season, and project good health, good fortune, and confidence in achieving goals.
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Personal Maypole Ritual for Beltane

I did this a few years back and it worked great – it can be done in solitary or in small groups. This is a Beltane Celebration.You will need:

* Small Branches (see below)
* Ribbons of all colors – mainly based on your intent
* Beltane or Fertility incense
* Beltane or Fertility Oil
* 1 Beltane Candle (can be a special Sabbat candle or a plain pink, lavender or yellow candle)
* 1 Pen that can write on the ribbon

Prep:

1) Walk near your home looking for loose branches. Its important that you use only branches that have falled already from a tree – do not break a branch off a tree. If like me you near maple trees, you will see plenty of branches. Pick one that is reasonably straight. Once you find the branch, say a small prayer of thanks to the tree that shed it.

2) Beltane is a time for fertility and growth. What we plant here we will collect in the spring. Appropriate things for this Sabbat are all things that you wish to increase – find a new job, open a new business, start a family, find new love, close that new deal, etc. All intents like this work well generally. Pick 3 ribbon colors that match your intent. For example, if you decide to look for a new job, pick white, green and yellow. If you are looking for love, pick white, pink and red etc. I always like to add white in for purity and good energy.

Once you are ready – perform your Ritual:

1) Cast your circle as normal

2) Anoint your Beltane candle. Think of the energy of the season – the planting of new things, a time for change – a time when anyone can start over no matter what. A time for new projects, new beginnings etc. Once your candle is properly anointed, place it on your altar at the center of your pentacle.

3) Take your ribbons, and write on each ribbon the things you want to bring into your life. For example, if you choose the ribbons for a new job you can do the following:

– Green – I wish to find a job that will pay me what I need to make to comfortably support myself and my family
– Yellow – I wish to do well in all job interviews I go on
– White – I want a job that will make me happy and satisfied and that will be for my highest good.

If you did the one for new love – you can do the following:

– Red – I wish to find a mate that inspires in me a passion for life, and for each other
– Pink – I wish to find a mate that is not only passionate, but considerate, kind, and who will be a good friend as well as a lover
– White – I wish to find the best relationship for me, that will bring me happiness and joy for my highest good.

You get the idea – once you write on each ribbon what you want, lay the ribbons out in front of you next to your branch.

4) Light your Beltane candle.

5) This is the tricky part – you want to use the wax from the candle to “anchor” the ribbons at the base of the branch. I like to do them one at a time. Once they are fairly secure (they will never be solidly glued – but will be in place enough for you to work), begin brading them down the length of your branch.

6) Take your time and be careful – don’t pull it too tight or it will come apart on you. Once the thread is braided all the way down, secure the end with knotting each ribbon around your branch (now your wand). I also like to take my Beltane candle and use the wax to “seal” both ends of my wand now – over the know at the end and over the start of the ribbons on the bottom.

7) Once done, place your wand on your altar and proceed with your ritual.

8) Cake and Ale

9) Close your circle

You can keep the keep the wand with you all year long. Anytime you wish to cast another spell relating to the same issue, use your wand to help imbue that spell with more energy. Once the year is done – you can choose to keep your wand or burn it and make a new one.

Enjoy!

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