Beltaine/Samhain @ GaiaEarth November 2017

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Beltaine altar – MoonCourt

The actual Moment of this cross-quarter, the midpoint between Equinox (Spring/Autumn) and Solstice (Summer/Winter) is 5:25 UT (Universal Time) on the 7th November … that’s November 7th 15:25 EST Australia – my place: other global times are available at archaeoastronomy.com.

 

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Samhain altar – MoonCourt

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

In the Southern Hemisphere it is the Season of Beltaine/High Spring, the season of celebrating sweet and holy Desire for being – the “glue” of the Cosmo; the primordial attractive activity that holds all form together and allows the dance of life, the holy Composition we participate in. In the Northern Hemisphere it is the Season of Samhain/Deep Autumn, the season of celebrating the falling apart of all form – the holy De-composition we participate in, the magic of the space between the old and the new, the ferment seething with possibility that allows the transformation of death.

Both Seasonal Moments are times when it is said that “the veil is thin that divides the worlds”. These cross-quarter Moments, High Spring and Deep Autumn, just prior to the fullness of light or dark at the Summer or Winter Solstice, have traditionally been times of high revelry celebrating a wild fertile space – one a genetic fertility, the other a trans-genetic/imaginal fertility. And in the evolutionary story the advent of meiotic sex is connected to the advent of death[1]; the poetics of these opposite Seasons are linked.  Beltaine celebrates the Dance of Life – the sweetness and pleasure of the moment and Holy Desire, and Samhain celebrates the Trans-formation of Death – the passing of the moment, and the magic of new possibility seething there in the dark sentience: they are essential to each other … enjoying the Moment of Now is intimate with a sense of Death. Both are celebrations of the “Event-ual” nature of existence: this Place of being is an Event, “one big flashing show, and then it is gone” (as I have heard Brian Swimme say). In this Seasonal Moment the seamless connection of “the worlds” is more apparent … thus “the veils are thin”, as the Southern Hemisphere rushes towards fullness of light, and the Northern Hemisphere rushes towards fullness of dark. Beltaine /Samhain @ GaiaEarth may be a time for seeing the seamless connection of “the worlds”, of the manifest and the manifesting: a season for contemplating this Event that we find ourselves in.

IMG_0037For some Beltaine Poetry: PaGaian Beltaine 2009 on YouTube

SamhainFor some Samhain Poetry: PaGaian Samhain 2009 on YouTube 

Most who celebrate this Beltaine/Samhain Moment across the globe will do so on the 31st October – it is the traditional date. Unfortunately in the Southern Hemisphere (Australia where I am) the consumer culture/faith will be selling Samhain (Halloween), and many have no idea that “Halloween” is supposed to be related to the season. As I have said in the book  PaGaian Cosmology, the children of Biblical religious heritage in Australia, inherited a poverty of spirit, a deep divorce from Earth that few other religions in the history of Gaia have ever known; and in our times this alienation is deepened by commerce. There is a move however, a groundswell, to celebrate the actual season, and frequently on the actual Moment, or close to it (rather than the traditional date).

In the Blue Mountains of Australia we will celebrate Beltaine ritual on the 4th November, gathering in MoonCourt. The invitation traditionally reads:

Earth tilts us further towards the Sun – the Source of Her pleasure, life and ecstasy

You are invited to celebrate
BELTAINE

This is the time when sweet Desire For Life
is met … the fruiting begins:
the Promise of early Spring exalts in Passion.
This is the celebration of Holy Lust, Allurement, Aphrodite …
Who holds all things in form, Who unites the cosmos,
Who brings forth all things,
Who is the Essence of the Dance of Life
.

–oOo–

PaGaian Cosmology blogs for Beltaine/High Spring

PaGaian Cosmology blogs for Samhain/Deep Autumn

cover 1The Beltaine and Samhain meditations on PaGaian Cosmology Meditations CDs may be nurturant of your ceremonial participation in this Seasonal transition – with a group or for yourself. The meditations may be purchased individually (and digitally) or you may purchase the whole set (in CD form or digitally).

Beltaine/High Spring and Samhain/Deep Autumn preparation/celebration e-notes, images and meditations are offered, though usually part of the whole year-long course: Celebrating PaGaian Cosmology on-line.

Beltaine and Samhain story is offered in Appendix F of PaGaian Cosmology, or if you have a paper version of the book, there is an Index for references throughout. These Seasonal Moments in relationship to the whole Wheel of the Year can be found in Chapter 5, and ceremonial scripts are offered in Chapter 7, though they of course have always evolved and been adapted to personal and regional poeitics. they evolve. The on-line versions are different from those in the paper copy of the book.

For more reflection on the reciprocity of Beltaine and Samhain: Beltaine/Samhain @ EarthGaia. For some Samhain thoughts: Conceptions of Samhain

 

NOTES:
[1] See Elisabet Sahtouris, Earthdance, NE: iUniverse, 2000, p.134-135, and Ursula Goodenough, The Sacred Depths of Nature, NY: Oxford University Press, 1998, p.143-149. More can be made of this link between these Seasonal Moments: orgasm has been termed “a little death” in French.

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Stuart McHardy

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