A Quiet Beltane…kind of…

Beltane this year was both busy but quiet all at the same time.  I didn’t go to any festivals or public rituals, though I had originally planned to do that but at the last minute didn’t feel it was right.  I have been having these feelings lately about needing to get back to the basics with my practice.  I’ve been practicing as a solitary again for the last three years since moving to San Diego.  I didn’t find any groups here that I felt called to me or that I wanted to get involved with and I wasn’t looking to restart my coven here (that really didn’t feel right).  So I decided I would just go back to being a solitaire, something that was really going to be a bit weird for me.  And in these three years my practice has become very lazy casual.

So I decided that with Beltane I would get back into the habit of having a full on ritual for the Sabbats and Esbats, even if within them I do nothing more than a meditation.  But I need to do formal things to mark the seasons and cycles again.  I even broke out my copy of “Wicca: A Guide for the Solitary Practitioner” to get some thoughts about what I was going to do.  And honestly I feel like it might be a good time to start reading that again.  I used to read it once a year because it is the text book I use when I teach my 101 class.  Since I haven’t taught that class in four years I haven’t picked that book up in that amount of time (at least).  So I decided that for this Beltane I would do a full altar, cast circle, say some words and prayers of honor for marking the union of the Goddess and God, and then work a little magick.

As some of you know I have been dealing with a hellish situation that has me without my usual ritual space (still don’t have it back and don’t know when anything is going to happen to get it back).  I took some pictures of my altar for this Beltane, though the space is all cluttered with the mess of stuff that I have piled around the area.

So you can see that I like to use more jeweled toned colors for my Beltane altar.  I find that, for me, it sets Beltane and Ostara apart a bit.  They are similar in that they both deal with fertility but they deal with fertility on somewhat different levels and I find that the deep colors at Beltane speak more to the sensual and sexual power of fertility as opposed to the fertility of Ostara that I can only describe as more “pure”?  I don’t know, I’m going to have to think about that.  🙂

You can also see I have this little mini Maypole that I put on my altar.  I made this during a bout of insomnia right before Beltane 2007.  I was dealing with a horrible depression that was topped with a great deal of insomnia (not sleeping for three days a time) and I found that painting, making jewelry, and crafting random things kept me sane.  That year for just about every Sabbat I was making new things for my altar.  This is one that I love and I use it every Beltane. I put it inside a mini cauldron to represent the Goddess while the pole represents the God and I hold it in place with green glass stones to represent the earth.

Another thing that might seem a little out of place or strange is the nest with eggs and the skull (yeah, I know, it’s cheap resin, but I love the knot work on it).  I always try and remember the dynamic polarity of Beltane with a representation of the aspects of fertility (the eggs) and death (the skull).  The key below them represents the key to the Mysteries that we seek to unlock through the celebration of the Sabbats and the turning of the Wheel. I also have a yellow votive candle anointed with Beltane oil to represent the Sabbat fires and a pink candle that was anointed with rose oil to send pink light to some friends for the holiday.  I also worked a mojo hand (not present for the pictures) as my spellwork for the ritual.

It was quite, it was small, but it was what I needed.  For the New Moon I really didn’t do much but reflect on some plans for the rest of the month.  I did start another candle spell, doing Road Opener work, early in the day before the moon went void.  And that was that!

Now the rest of the month of May is going to be RIDICULOUS!  The deadline to get the tarot book done is ticking away like nobody’s business!  So if I’m extra quiet over these next few weeks, please understand that there’s a reason why.  I look forward to things being less crazy once the summer gets here!

Current Mood: stressed 

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  • Charlotte
    May 8, 2011 at 2:03 am

    Love the mini-Maypole, considering you were insomniac and depressed when you created it, it still holds a great deal of what I can only describe as “joy” and “celebration”.

    Thanks for explaining the significance of the skull, I must admit I did a bit of a ‘blink, blink’ reaction on seeing it in the picture LOL, but it’s given me food for thought on the dual sides to the Beltane coin – might have to try something similar when Beltane rolls around down here (We’re in Australia).

    Sincerely hope that the current problems you and your beloved are experiencing with your home are resolved soon!

    Charlotte 🙂