Beltane Banner
May 1, 2006
Volume 2, Issue 5
A `Spiral Dance'

May's main holiday is May Day, or Beltane. During Beltane, we celebrate the Sacred Union of the God and Goddess which promotes the growth and fertility shown during the birth of spring. The Maypole is a symbol of fertility. Traditionally, young unmarried men and women would dance around the Maypole weaving colored ribbons about it. This dance represents death and rebirth. Some cultures celebrate the Sacred Marriage through this ritual dance, the pole being the God, and the woven ribbon, the Goddess. The God is usually represented by the Green Man, who is covered in leaves to blend in with the forest. He is an ancient nature spirit who brings life into the earth after winter leaves us. His consort is Mother Nature, who is often referred to as Gaia, which is the Greek word for mother. May is a magical month. Flowers are blooming - and each with it's own purpose. Lilacs repel evil, wild blue violets encourage love, and dandelions, often considered pesky weeds, attracts spirits. They also are a very tasty addition to any salad or blended tea. Because of all this magic and love in the air, May is a great time for handfastings, pregnancies, flowers, and Fairies!


Magickal Correspondence

The Full Moon of May is a perfect time to meditate on all things becoming one in perfect balance, harmony, and truth. Go outside and find a space where you can sit undisturbed for a bit. Create a small altar to help you focus. Light a green candle (yes green) in the south, lay a feather in the east, put stones in the north, and seashell in the west. Light some sandalwood incense, or another natural scent that you enjoy. Begin your simple rite by giving the Universe thanks for all your many blessings. Think about them one by one and try to make the connection back to mother earth. Then visualize your legs and feet growing roots, deep into the earth. Next visualize your hair floating up into the sky and becoming one with the stars. Let yourself enjoy this amazing hug from Above and Below, creating a balance within you. This is a wonderful exercise to practice when you are feeling anxious, alone, or afraid. When your meditation is over, draw the roots and stars back into you and recognize that you now have a piece of Heaven and Earth inside of you.


Fairy Tales...

May is a wonderful time for communicating with the Fairy Folk. A wonderful way to do this is to leave an offering, such as bread with honey and milk, in your garden or on your windowsill. Add a half shell with a bit of spring water in it and a tiny mirror (from a craft store) inside. Feel free to also leave some lovely crystals or jewelry or ribbon as well. Traditionally, people would leave offerings in enchanted places along with a wish or request, knowing that if their plea was sincere enough, it would be granted. You can do this without asking anything of the Fey, other than inviting them into your gardens and plants to keep then healthy. This is a great activity to do with the kids. But be warned . . . whatever you decide to do, never invite the Fairy into your home. It is much better for you, and them, to stay in your plants and gardens. While they are wonderful nature spirits, they love to play and are very mischievous. And hiding keys and cloths, making messes, and waking young children to play, will begin to bug you after a while - no matter how much you love the Fey!


Spring Wine

Now is the perfect time to try your hand at making some homemade Maybowl. Maybowl is a celebratory beverage mixed with fresh herbs and fruit juices. I found a great recipe for Maybowl in Llewellyn's Witches' calendar 2005:

- Start with 1 bottle of sparkling grape juice, or white wine if you prefer.
- Add 6 sprigs of herbs to taste - such as peppermint, rosemary, chamomile, lemon verbena, basil, etc.
- Let steep over night.
- Then strain and sweeten to taste with sugar or honey.
- Next, add 1/2 cup of strawberries and 1/2 cup of raisins (or lemons if you prefer).
- Add a small handful of edible flowers, like roses, pansy, or dandelions, and chill.
- Serve cold and enjoy!


Goddess for a Day

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