A Column By Heathwitch, WMS, Order of the White Moon
Lady of the Beasts
Sing of your magic
Dance in the green-glens
Revel in the moonlight
Artemis, Artemis, Artemis!
Be joyful! Be blissful! Be playful! It is Beltane — that time of year when we celebrate new life, fertility and the earth’s ripe abundance in all its forms. It is the beginnings-time, when the divine union of the Goddess with Her Consort fertilizes ourselves and our lives. We celebrate this festival of fertility and fire by decorating our altars with greens and reds, fresh flowers and bright candles, and we honour Virgin-Mother Goddesses such as Artemis.
The Goddess of wild places and wild things, the Greek Artemis is a Lady of the Moon most commonly perceived as the Virgin Huntress. She roams the forests and mountains with Her band of nymphs and hunting dogs, in a chariot pulled by silver stags. A beloved deity to the Amazons, Artemis knows of the secret places in Nature where one can rest and regain lost strength.
However, these roles are not Her sole purpose: Artemis is also known as the patroness of nurturing, fertility and birth. Though Her priestesses did not consort with men, they and their Lady aided women in childbirth and defended women who were harassed or threatened by men.
Artemis’ colours are silver, white, green and red, and Her symbols are the sickle, bridle, the crescent (waxing) moon and hanks of wool. She has a fondness for dogs, horses and stags, and is beneficial when dealing with animals or the elemental kingdoms. Mother of the Mysteries, Artemis holds sacred the amaranth flower, which blooms purple and crimson. In the tarot, She can be found in The Star and The Moon.
You can invite Artemis into your life by mixing an oil for Her (add 20 drops jasmine oil and 4 drops verbena oil to 20ml of base oil) and including it in a ritual or meditation dedicated to Artemis. Alternatively you could make an incense blend to honour this Goddess – try the following recipe:
1 part ox-eye daisy flowers
1 part hazel wood
1 part beech bark
1 part willow wood
¼ part wormwood
½ part almond blossoms
¼ part cypress needles
¼ part fir needles
Few drops lemon balm (melissa) oil
You can also work with Artemis in ritual; She can be invoked to aid in all animal or elemental matters, any magick or sorcery, travel, healing and medicines, psychic ability, fertility (particularly female fertility), exercise and dance. She is also particularly useful in protecting and defending women against men. To honour Artemis you can use the following rite:
On the night of the Full Moon, set up an altar outside. On the altar have three candles, white, red and black. Behind the candles place a statue of a woman, with a quiver of arrows, and a dog at her feet. If you can’t get that, a statue of a woman, and separate statues of dogs will suffice. Wolves have long been a symbol of the Moon, and dogs are domesticated wolves. Pick some beautiful flowers, especially white ones, and place them at her feet.
Cast your circle in your usual manner. Be seated at your altar and go into meditation. Then repeat the following invocation:
Lovely Goddess of the bow!
Lovely Goddess of the arrows!
Of all hounds and of all hunting!
Thou who wakest in starry heaven,
when the sun is sunk in slumber.
Thou with moon upon thy forehead,
who the chase by night
preferrest unto hunting in the daylight,
with thy nymphs unto the music of the horn –
thyself the huntress, and most powerful:
I pray thee Think,
although but for an instant,
Upon us who pray unto thee!
Then light the candles, and meditate on the Full Moon. You may light some incense such as jasmine, sandalwood or mugwort or wormwood. Place nine white stones or shells at her feet, forming a crescent Moon, with the points towards the statues feet. Now is the time to ask for a request if needed.
Thank Artemis for Her presence and say goodbye. Blow out the candles and take up your circle.
Have a blessed Beltane!
Conway, D. J. The Ancient and Shining Ones. Llewellyn: Minnesota (1993).
Franklin, Anna. Magical Incenses and Oils. Capall Bann: Berkshire (2000).
Grimassi, Raven. Italian Witchcraft: The Old Religion of Southern Europe. Llewellyn: Minnesota (2000).
Marashinsky, Amy Sophia. The Goddess Oracle: A Way to Wholeness through the Goddess and Ritual. Element: Boston (1997).
About The Author: Heathwitch is a Witch, teacher and author. She runs courses and workshops on energy work, healing, Witchcraft and magic. High Priestess of the Circle of the Moon coven, Heathwitch lives in Cheshire, England. web: http://www.heathwitch.com – email: heathwitch@… See the books I’ve set free at: http://bookcrossing.com/referral/heathwitch