Calendar of the Sun for December 20th

Calendar of the Sun

20 Yulmonath

Saturnalia Day 4: Unbound

(There is no ritual for Sponde today. Folk may do as they choose. The Hesperis ritual should go on as planned, although it may be considered optional.)

[Pagan Book of Hours]

Calendar of the Moon for December 4th

Calendar of the Moon

Elder Tree Month

Color: Russet
Element: Air
Altar: Upon a russet cloth set three black candles, a cauldron filled with water, a vase filled with elder branches, a cup of dried elderberries, and a knife.
Offerings: Give aid to the elders in the House, and outside.
Daily Meal: Soups and stews, and soft foods.

Ruis Invocation

Call: Hail the month of passing.
Response: For all things pass away.
Call: Hail the month of waning.
Response: For all things must fade and die.
Call: Hail the month of creaking wood.
Response: Hail the month of creaking bones.
Call: Hail the month of the dwindling Sun.
Response: Hail the time of all endings.
Call: For even as we began the year in silence,
Response: So we shall end the year in silence.
Call: For even as we began the year with chill winds of newness,
Response: So we shall end the year with chill winds of darkness.
Call: May the raven croak his warning from the bare branches.
Response: May the deer leave her footprints in the wake of the first snows.
Call: We will surrender ourselves to the darkness.
Response: Yet even with that surrender, we shall not pass away.
Call: For the seed that was grown in the spring still lives.
Response: Its life force is given back to the Earth.
Call: Its life force is given back to the Maker of new life.
Response: And new life shall spring forth in time.
Call: This is the moment of waiting for the end.
Response: This is the moment of bowed heads.
Call: Elder Goddess, teach us to praise loss, death, and the passing of all things.
Response: For from this flux we know your blessings flow.

Chant: In the eye of the Moon
We walk willingly
Into the darkness.

[Pagan Book of Hours]

Calendar of the Moon for November 5th

Calendar of the Moon

Reed Month

Color: Blue-green
Element: Water
Altar: Upon cloth of blue-green place a vase of reeds, a single blue-green candle, a great bowl of water floating with wetlands plant leaves, and a knife.
Offering: Recycle something useless into something useful.
Daily Meal: Vegetarian soup and sandwiches. Only water or herbal tea to drink.

Ngetal Invocation

Call: Now is the time of the bleak cold.
Response: Now the reeds whisper in the swamp.
Call: Now is the time when we see the growing dark.
Response: Now is the time when we begin to shiver.
Call: Now is the time of bare trees.
Response: Now is the time of rain and wind.
Call: Now the rain fills the wetlands to overflowing.
Response: Now the swamp overflows into our lives.
Call: We feel our feet dragged down into the cold waters.
Response: Yet the wetland is the source of greatest life!
Call: We feel ourselves pulled into the unfamiliar.
Response: Unfamiliar to us, but no less of value.
Call: The damp cold begins to reach our bones.
Response: We must welcome its touch.
Call: We must keep it far away with fire’s warmth!
Response: We must welcome its touch.
Call: Why should we not ban it from our lives?
Response: For this, too, is a Mystery of water.
Call: Not the deep mystery of the Ocean…
Response: Not the running flow of the river…
Call: Not the crystal of snow and ice…
Response: But the secrets of the still waters.
Call: From the still waters springs the greatest number of lives!
Response: And it is this that we must honor.
Call: Welcome into ourselves the song of the whispering reeds!
Response: Welcome into ourselves the oncoming winter.

Chant: Cold as stone
Marshes heart
We will own
What is apart

[Pagan Book of Hours]

Calendar of the Moon for October 17th

Calendar of the Moon

Ivy Month

Colors: Light blue and dark green
Element: Air
Altar: Upon cloth of dark green lay pots of ivy twined up around posts of gold with suns, three blue candles, a vine-painted chalice of water, and a feather fan.
Offerings: Pray for enlightenment, and to be lifted up.
Daily Meal: Sheep, goat, or vegetarian using the fruits of the local harvests.

Gort Invocation

Call: Hail the month of the Ivy!
Response: Hail the month of twining for the sky!
Call: Where the vine yielded forth the blood of the earth…
Response: The ivy yields up the winds of the sky!
Call: Where the vine dulls the mind with happiness…
Response: The ivy opens the mind with terror and light!
Call: Hail to the chains of the Maenads!
Response: Hail to Dionysos and his torrent of madness!
Call: Hail to the Lady that mates with the Oak!
Response: She has entwined him, she has wrapped her limbs about him!
Call: Even his great strength is not enough to stay her!
Response: She shows that not all strength is standing tall!
Call: Hail to she who is supported by others….
Response: Yet reaches as high as they themselves!
Call: Show us, sacred Ivy, what it is to rise with the aid of the strong.
Response: Show us what it is to be borne up by branches.
Call: Show us what it is to be borne up by hopes.
Response: Show us what it is to be borne up by the Gods.
Call: We cannot reach the sky without aid…
Response: So we entreat you, Ivy, beg for aid for our earthbound hands.
Call: Teach us that the sky can be gained not only by the straight path…
Response: But also by the path of the spiral!
Call: Dance that spiral for us, Ivy, and we shall follow you!
Response: We shall follow you toward the blessed realms of the Gods.

Chant:
Turn turn turn again
Turn wind turn leaf
Twine o’er the last sheaf
Turn turn turn again

[Pagan Book of Hours]

Calendar of the Moon for October 7th

Calendar of the Moon

Grapevine Month
Colors: Blue and Purple
Element: Water
Altar: Upon cloth of blue and purple set a great pitcher of wine with many cups, four purple candles, and many wreaths of grapevine and baskets of grapes.
Offerings:
Daily Meal: Vegetarian, with wine or grape juice to drink, and of course grapes.

Muin Invocation

Call: Hail the Month of the Grapevine!
Response: Hail the Month of the Vine-Gods!
Call: Hail the month when sour turns to sweet!
Response: Hail the month when labor comes ripe!
Call: Hail the month when our hands come together,
Response: Hail the month when the cup is passed!
Call: This is the time of bonding,
Response: When the fruits of the harvest lay within our grasp.
Call: This is the call of Joy and Merriment,
Response: This is the time of coming together.
Call: For though we may have forgotten laughter beneath our burdens,
Response: Laughter comes for us at last.
Call: And yet we begin to see the year passing to its end,
Response: And our laughter is the light passing into the dark.
Call: May we go to into the dark like the Children of Dionysos,
Response: Embracing the cycle with open arms!
Call: Like the grapevine, we are givers of ecstasy.
Response: Like the grapevine, we are givers of dream.
Call: Like vines, we yield up our fruit.
Response: Like vines, we yield up for the good of all.
Call: Like vines, we twine towards the Light.
Response: Like vines, we twine towards the Spirit.
Call: We hold the line, we keep the Mysteries true,
Response: We hold the line, we keep the Mysteries true,
Call: I am the vine; the branches, you and you.
Response: I am the vine; the branches, you and you.

Chant:
Taste Joy in the Day
Take Joy in the Night
Touch Joy in your face turned
To the fading light
Ay ay ay ay-yi-hey.

[Pagan Book of Hours]

Calendar of the Sun for October 7th

Calendar of the Sun

7 Winterfyllith

Njord’s Blot

Color: Sea-blue
Element: Water
Altar: Upon cloth of sea-blue set a Scandinavian ship, a net, a basket of fish-shaped cakes, and a metal tankard of mead.
Offerings: Give aid to a sailor. The House should, together, send a package to one who sails the seas and has need of succor.
Daily Meal: Fish.

Invocation to Njord

Hail, Njord, Lord of the Surface of the Sea!
Hail, Sailor’s Watcher,
Lord of Ships upon the waters.
Blessed you are in the prow,
Where you lead us forward to our goals.
Blessed you are in the stern,
Where you guard our wake
From the monsters of the Deep.
Blessed you are on the port,
Where your keen eyes search the horizon.
Blessed you are on the starboard,
Where you guide us by the stars.
Blessed you are on the high mast,
Where you stand tall with far vision.
Blessed you are in the sails,
Which you fill with billowing winds.
Blessed you are at the rudder,
Where you skillfully outrun all storms.
Blessed you are at the nets,
Where the fish come by the thousands into our hands.
Blessed you are belowdecks,
Where you rock us gently to sleep
On the waves of certainty,
Knowing that the farthest shore
Will soon be under our feet.
Hail Njord, Lord of Ships,
Guide our souls safely across the waters.

(All pass and bless the package, and see it safely gone. The mead is poured out as libation.)

[Pagan Book of Hours]

Calendar of the Sun for August 5th

Calendar of the Sun

5 Weodmonath

Dumuzi’s Day

Color: Golden
Element: Earth
Altar: Upon a golden cloth is laid a sheaf of grain, two red candles, a cup of wine, incense, a sheepskin, a knife, and a bowl of blood.
Offering: Make a sacrifice of any kind.
Daily Meal: Meat and grain.

Invocation to Dumuzi

Hail, Lord of the flocks and herds
Who is slaughtered that we may live.
Hail, sacred king of Babylon
Who gives his life for Inanna’s freedom
And for Ereshkigal’s hunger.
Hail, reluctant one who goes unwillingly
To the sacrifice, as many of us do,
Yet who learns the beauty and dignity
Of the path of being an offering.

(The cup of wine is passed, and the remainder poured out as a libation.)

It is the nature of sacrifice
To be difficult.
If it was easy to throw away,
It was no sacrifice.
If it was did not miss it
It was no sacrifice.
If it was not the best you could give
It was no sacrifice.
If it was not agonizing to choose,
It was no sacrifice.
If it did not make you waver at least once in your choice,
It was no sacrifice.
If it did not make you weep,
It was no sacrifice.

(The bowl of blood is poured out as a libation.)

Song: Lammas Prayer

[Pagan Book of Hours]

Calendar of the Moon for January 24th

Calendar of the Moon

Rowan Tree Moon
Color: Orange-red

Element: Fire

Altar: Upon a cloth of orange-red set a row of red candles, Brigid’s cross, and a bell.

Offerings: Votive candles. Quicken a newborn idea into birth.

Daily Meal: Hot drinks with every meal. Keep food warm.
Luis/Gamelion Invocation
Call: Now is the quickening of the year.

Response: Now is the time of the first movement.
Call: Now the child stirs in the womb.
Response: Now the seed stirs in the earth.
Call: Now the plains flood and our fire is threatened.
Response: Now the cold water drowns our spark.
Call: Now is the time of the hard struggle.
Response: Now is the month of desperation.
Call: Now is the time of desperation to live.
Response: Now is the time of desperation to be born.
Call: We turn in our sleep as the earth turns.
Response: We dream with the sleeping earth.
Call: Each of our dreams is a lit candle in the dark.
Response: Each of our dreams is a single point of hope.
Call: They shine faint and alone in the night of struggle.
Response: They are alone as we are alone.
Call: Yet we are not alone in our dreams.
Response: We are not alone!
Call: We will keep our fires burning.
Response: We will burn against the night!
Call: We will warm our dreams with the force of life.
Response: We will not die alone in the cold!
Call: We will ward off all evil. Response: Only good shall pass our gates.
Call: We will care for each other.
Response: We will never cease to care!
Call: We will survive the winter.
Response: We will survive! (Repeat last two lines twice more.)

Chant:

Protect the flame that warms your dreams
And dreams shall never die.
 

[Pagan Book of Hours]

Calendar of the Sun for January 24th

Calendar of the Sun

24 Wolfmonath

Paganalia: Celebration of the Country Farmer

Color: Green
Element: Earth
Altar: Upon a cloth of green set agricultural tools, and perhaps a small model farm of paper.
Offering: Give aid to a farmer.
Daily Meal: Food from a small local organic farm.

Paganalia Invocation to Gaea

The mother of us all,
The oldest of all,
Hard, splendid as rock
Whatever there is that is of the land
It is she who nourishes it
It is the Earth that I sing.
(All cry out: “Hail Gaea, Mother beneath our feet!”)
Hear now the words of Gaea:
Without me
No seed grows
No milk flows
No honey in the hive
Without my touch
No sweet exchange of breath between plant and animal
No safe nest from which to try your fledgling span
No one to miss you when you go
Without the part of you that is me
No working the earth
No food in the belly
No caring hand to help another.
(All cry out: “Hail Gaea, Mother who gives us all!”)
Remember that those who work the earth
With their own hands are closest to me.
Lie upon me when the spring comes
And give thanks that you were born here.
(All cry out: “Hail Gaea, we give thanks to you!”)

Chant:
Mother I feel you under my feet
Mother I hear your heartbeat
Calendar of the Sun

[Pagan Book of Hours]

Calendar of the Moon for January 21

Calendar of the Moon

Rowan Tree Moon

Color: Orange-red
Element: Fire
Altar: Upon a cloth of orange-red set a row of red candles, Brigid’s cross, and a bell.
Offerings: Votive candles. Quicken a newborn idea into birth.
Daily Meal: Hot drinks with every meal. Keep food warm.

Luis/Gamelion Invocation

Call: Now is the quickening of the year.
Response: Now is the time of the first movement.
Call: Now the child stirs in the womb.
Response: Now the seed stirs in the earth.
Call: Now the plains flood and our fire is threatened.
Response: Now the cold water drowns our spark.
Call: Now is the time of the hard struggle.
Response: Now is the month of desperation.
Call: Now is the time of desperation to live.
Response: Now is the time of desperation to be born.
Call: We turn in our sleep as the earth turns.
Response: We dream with the sleeping earth.
Call: Each of our dreams is a lit candle in the dark.
Response: Each of our dreams is a single point of hope.
Call: They shine faint and alone in the night of struggle.
Response: They are alone as we are alone.
Call: Yet we are not alone in our dreams.
Response: We are not alone!
Call: We will keep our fires burning.
Response: We will burn against the night!
Call: We will warm our dreams with the force of life.
Response: We will not die alone in the cold!
Call: We will ward off all evil.
Response: Only good shall pass our gates.
Call: We will care for each other.
Response: We will never cease to care!
Call: We will survive the winter.
Response: We will survive!
(Repeat last two lines twice more.)

Chant:
Protect the flame that warms your dreams
And dreams shall never die.

[Pagan Book of Hours]

Calendar of the Moon for January 15th

Calendar of the Moon

15 Luis/Gamelion

Lenaia Day IV

Colors: Purple and green
Element: Water
Altar: A large post is set up behind the altar, draped in robes of purple and green, with a mask of Dionysus upon it, and arms raised upwards made of grapevine and fruit tree branches. The altar is draped in purple and green, and upon it set two purple candles, a wreath of grapevines, two jugs of wine (one white and one red), and a chalice. All enter in a procession, with a torchbearer in the lead; the torch is placed in a holder before the altar.
Offerings: Dancing. Drumming. Music. Transforming dreams into reality.
Daily Meal: Wine. Goat or lamb. Lentils. Grape leaves. Greek food if possible.

Lenaia Invocation I

Hail, son of Semele! Iakkhos, Giver of Wealth!
We have danced for fertility of the Earth
And the fruits of trees.
We have danced for the fertility of Mind
And the fruits of Creativity.
We have danced for fertility of Soul
And the fruits of Creation.
Now we will be your Maenads
And dance in honor of your rebirth.
Invoke the God!

Response: Hail Iakkhos!

(Repeat three times. Then the drum circle is formed and the dance goes on in an all-night vigil. The duty of the vigil can be shared and danced in shifts, but there must be at least one drummer and one dancer present at all times until dawn. Any appropriate chant may be used. At dawn, the red wine is passed around and shared, with the worker saying, “Behold the blood of Iakkhos.” The remainder is poured out as a libation. Then the white wine is passed around and shared, with the worker saying, “Behold the dreams of Iakkhos.” The remainder is poured out as a libation.)

[Pagan Book of Hours]

Calendar of the Sun for January 15th

Calendar of the Sun

15 Wolfmonath

Hestia’s Day

Color: Red
Element: Fire
Altar: Today’s ritual should be done in the kitchen and not the altar room. The hearth and the stove are the altar today, and a flame should be burning, and bread and milk and salt set out on the table. No other altar is required. After the ritual, all shall feast.
Offerings: Do kitchen work, or preserving of food, or cleaning.
Daily Meal: Any wholesome, extremely correct food.

Hestia Invocation

Flame of the Hearth
Keeper of the Inner Circle
Faceless One
Eldest of the Olympians
Lady of the Pantry
Whose open hands dispense hospitality
Chimney and cooking fire
Lady of routine and dailiness
To miss your quiet strength
In the rush of our sudden lives
Would be as great a disservice
As forgetting the air we breathe.
You who are the comforting hearth where we began
And the inner warmth that we will come home to,
Make this place a home for all of us.
Make this hearth a home of the every day,
The ordinary morning and noon,
The expected evening and the consoling night.
Teach us to take our time, Lady.
Teach us of the holiness of step after step
Chore after chore, moving in small circles
Around the hearth of our own beings.

Chant:
Circle round the hearthfire
Join our hands as one
Remember the Virgin Flame burns
Ageless as the Wheel turns
The place for which the heart yearns
Since this tribe has begun.

[Pagan Book of Hours]

Calendar of the Sun for January 14th

Calendar of the Sun

Bruma

Colors: White and brown
Element: Earth
Altar: Upon a bare table lay a large pot shaped like a human figure, reclining, filled with earth. All should enter bearing two white cloths, one on each arm.
Offerings: Silence and meditation.
Daily Meal: Vegetarian

Bruma Invocation

Earth, you lie sleeping in silence,
And we can do nothing but wait.
We have breathed upon your first seeds,
We have sung your first green shoots
Up from the bare brown soil,
We have watered you with tears and sweat
And fed you with the remains of our meals,
We have cut down your bounty and saved it,
Yet this is not the time for seeds, or green,
But simply the long cold wait in the dark
Until the light waxes and the time comes again.
You are silent, and will not speak to us,
No matter how we cry out.
You are dormant, and will not sing to us,
No matter how we raise our voices,
For all things come in their own time,
And this is not the time for movement.
So we will sit with you, Earth,
We will watch over you as you sleep
And take part in your dreams
In silence, and wait for your awakening.

Chant:
Earth dreaming
Silent seeming
Winter’s vigil
We will wait for you.

(After the chant has been sung five times, all come forth to the altar. Each lays one white cloth gently over the pot, saying, “Blessed be the Earth in the time of winter.” Then each sits on the floor and places the other white cloth over their heads, and meditates on all that is sleeping and cannot be awoken. Silence in the House until Akte.)

[Pagan Book of Hours]

Calendar of the Sun for January 13th

Calendar of the Sun

13 Wolfmonath

Compitalia Mania, Day of the Mother of Ghosts

Colors: White and Black
Element: Air
Altar: Upon cloth of black lay many sheer cloths of white, which each person takes as they enter and places over their heads. Lay out also four white candles, incense of myrrh, many loaves of bread made in the shape of men and women, and many skeins of handspun wool.
Offerings: Woolen effigies, to be made in the ritual. Make offerings in a graveyard.
Daily Meal: Fasting today until the evening meal.

Compitalia Mania Invocation

We call upon thee, Mania, Mother of Ghosts,
On this your day when you arise to admonish us.
Let not the spirits of the Dead torment us,
For we love and remember them.
Let not the spirits of the Dead pursue us,
For we wish them peace and rest.
Let not the spirits of the Dead wail in our ears,
For we cannot give them life, or comfort,
And so we beseech thee, Mother of Ghosts,
To take them into your dark arms
And sing them to sleep until it is time
For them to come once more
Into the world of life and breath and body.
(The bread loaves are passed around. Each is named with the name of someone dead who refuses to be forgotten. They are eaten.)
Hail, Mania, Mother of Ghosts!
We take these your children into our bodies,
We make them part of our lives,
And then return them again to the Earth.
May they live again in our flesh and blood
For these few days, and share our thoughts
And hopes, and dreams, and make themselves ready
To come once again into flesh of their own.

(The wool skeins are passed around, and fashioned into the shape of men and women, the Children of Mania, the Manes. These are hung about the house, over windows and doorways, in order to honor the Manes and keep them from tormenting the living.)

[Pagan Book of Hours]

Calendar of the Sun for January 12

Calendar of the Sun

 

12 Wolfmonath

Niflheim Day

Colors: White and Grey
Element: Air
Altar: Upon cloth of white and grey place a crystal goblet of melted snow, crystal ornaments that mimic ice, snowflakes, white fur, figures of white bears, and a large white bowl of snow.
Offerings: Help someone to keep warm in the winter, such as paying their fuel bill, bringing them wood to burn, or bringing them warmer clothing. There should be no heat in the House today from Auge to Hesperis, save what is necessary for the plumbing. All should bear with the cold, and think on their ancestors, for whom heat was vital.
Daily Meal: Cold meats and fish.

Niflheim Invocation

In the beginning, there was Ginnungagap,
The darkness ever-stretching in every direction.
Then came forth two worlds into the darkness,
And one was made of Ice over Stone.
Earth and Water, yet frozen and unmoving,
Waiting for the touch of Fire to wake them.
Yet when that Fire came and melted the Ice,
Forth was born Ymir the Giant,
Huge as a mountain chain, vast and blind
As the Earth from whence he came.
Ancestor of all the frost-giants,
The storm-giants, the creatures of wind and mist,
From from Ice and Stone came Breath,
Air that rushes and batters, great blizzards of the North.
Hail the Land of Ice, Winter’s glory,
Home of the Lords of Wind and Cold!
Hail to the Land of Water, lakes and islands,
Fjords that touch the icy water.
Hail to the Chieftains of Niflheim,
Great Kari the North Wind, son of Mistblindi,
Brother to Fire and Ocean,
Frosti, Snaer, Thorri, Fon, Drifa,
Mjol the wind-rider, the sorceress.
Hail to the Land of Mists, from whence the Giants came,
One of the Two from which all the Worlds began.

(One who has been chosen to do the work of the ritual carries around the goblet of melted snow, and all drink from it. The rest is poured out as libation.)

[Pagan Book of Hours]