On November 7th at 11:18 UT EarthGaia, our Planet, crosses the midpoint in Her orbit between an Equinox and Solstice. In the Southern Hemisphere it is the Season of Beltaine/High Spring – in the lightest quarter of the year, moving into Summer. In the Northern Hemisphere it is the Season of Samhain/Deep Autumn – in the darkest quarter of the year, moving into Winter. All planetary times for this Moment may be found at archaeoastronomy.com. Many around the globe will celebrate it on the traditional date of October 31st or November 1st, and some at a time when the season feels right, some right on the actual Moment, and some when it can be fitted into tick-tock time.
Beltaine/High Spring is a celebration of the dance of life and sweet desire for it … a celebration of Allurement, as cosmologist Brian Swimme names this cosmic power; as the light part of the day continues to grow and to dominate.
Samhain/Deep Autumn is a celebration of the trans-formation of life, a time for remembering and honouring all who have gone before and for dreaming and conceiving the new; as the dark part of the day continues to grow and to dominate.
Beltaine and Samhain are essential to each other – one cannot be without the other, and they occur at the same time (!) … are co-incidental. Enjoying the moment of Now in all its beauty is intimate with a sense of death – the knowing of the passing. What’s more, Life is built on Death – we would not be here if many/all had not passed before us. Death is actually the Mother of us all.
Beltaine and Samhain may both be celebrations of the “event-ual” nature of existence: that is, that this Place and Moment is an Event – always in flux … nothing stays the same. At Beltaine we may celebrate the beauty and passion of this present form and moment – the Now, its preciousness and rich diversity: we say in ceremony “Taste the sweetness of life, don’t miss the moment.” At Samhain we may honour all who have gone before and danced the dance of life; it is a time to celebrate the passing of the old and dreaming up the new, the trans-forming. The compost and the rot is not so pretty, but if you have the eyes to see, there are threads of gold: Samhain is about the gold of transformation.
They say “the veil is thin that divides the worlds” at this time: I take that to mean that the SENSE of the seamless connection of “the worlds” is more apparent … it is a kind of intimacy with our place, which is exciting; just prior to the promise of fullness of light or dark at the Solstices. Beltaine/Samhain @ EarthGaia is a time for contemplating and feeling this intimacy, for celebrating and communing with this sacred Event that we find ourselves in; and contemplating our place – personal and collective – in its unfolding. The exuberant fertility of both realms may be celebrated – one a genetic fertility of form and being (manifest), and the other a trans-genetic fertility of the void and becoming (manifesting).
a Beltaine Poetic video: PaGaian Beltaine 2009
a Samhain Poetic video: PaGaian Samhain 2009
Here in Australia I will celebrate Beltaine ceremony on the 10th November, gathering in simple circle in a new location, having just moved at that time. Traditionally the invitation to celebrate reads:
Earth tilts us further towards the Sun
the Source of Her pleasure, life and ecstasy
You are invited to celebrate
the time when sweet Desire For Life is met
– when 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.
PaGaian Cosmology blogs for Beltaine/High Spring
PaGaian Cosmology blogs for Samhain/Deep Autumn
Beltaine and Samhain meditations are offered on PaGaian Cosmology Meditations CDs a beautifully produced collection which supports the preparation and performing of ritual /ceremony for each Seasonal celebration: inspiring for both the experienced and the new. The meditations may be purchased individually (and digitally) or you may purchase the whole set (in CD form or digitally).
Beltaine and Samhain preparation e-notes, images and meditations are offered: Celebrating PaGaian Cosmology On-Line . The course starts for the Northern Hemisphere in the Autumn.
Beltaine and Samhain story may be found in Appendix F of PaGaian Cosmology. 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 always evolve and would be adapted to personal and regional poeitics. The on-line versions are different from those in the paper copy of the PaGaian Cosmology book.
Blissings of the Season to you