Calendar of the Moon for June 19th

19 Huath/Thargelion

Kallynteria: Spring Cleaning

Color: Grey and white
Element: Air
Altar: Upon cloth of grey and white place many brooms locked together in a geometric star, a clay bowl of water, and strong incense.
Offering: Clean the house.
Daily Meal: Vegan and simple.

Kallynteria Invocation

Call: Hail, Spirits of Cleansing!
Response: Hail, Wind of Change!
Call: We walk through the grime
Of many days and nights,
Grime of body that comes
On the bottom of our soles!
Response: Grime of spirit that comes
From the depths of our souls!
Call: On this day we sweep it all away!
Response: Sweep it all away!
Call: Weariness and drabness!
Response: Sweep it all away!
Call: Despair and sadness!
Response: Sweep it all away!
Call: The ashes of fear!
Response: Sweep it all away!
Call: The coals of resentment!
Response: Sweep it all away!
Call: The cobwebs of boredom!
Response: Sweep it all away!
Call: We will make this place ready for the Gods.
Response: We will make ready!
Call: We will clean and purify!
Response: We will await the Plynteria!
Call: This place will be sacred space!
Response: As is each of our souls!

(Each takes a broom from the altar and goes to sweep one part of the house. As they approach the altar, they are anointed with water from the cup as a purification. Others follow behind with the incense, fumigating every room. Open all windows and let the winds blow in.)

[Pagan Book of Hours]


Calendar of the Moon for Friday, May 25th

Calendar of the Moon
25 Huath/Thargelion

Plynteria: Altar Cleansing Rite

Color: White
Element: Air
Altar: All altars should be stripped, cleaned, and left bare. At the end of the rite, they are to be redecorated with clean white cloth (or colored for specific deity-altars), new candles and incense, fresh flowers, and new offerings. All altar furniture should be cleaned as well. All sacred gardens should be repaired, and all outdoor shrines taken apart before the rite. One statue of the Goddess (or whatever god/dess is the patron of that House) should be stripped bare and stood on the floor before the altar with a tub of salt water and a tub of fresh water, and clean towels.
Offerings: Clean sacred things.
Daily Meal: Vegan

Plynteria Invocation

Call: We come together to make this House ready for the Gods.
Response: Make ready!
Call: We make ready for the gods of the winds.
Response: Make ready!
Call: We make ready for the gods of the waters.
Response: Make ready!
Call: We make ready for the gods of the fire.
Response: Make ready!
Call: We make ready for the gods of the earth.
Response: Make ready!
Call: We make ready for the gods of Love.
Response: Make ready!
Call: We make ready for the gods of Fate.
Response: Make ready!
Call: We make ready for the gods of mortal deeds.
Response: Make ready!
Call: We make ready for the gods of Death.
Response: Make ready!
Call: All divine spirits are welcome into this House!
Response: We welcome you!

(All come forth and wash the statue of the Goddess with great reverence, dipping it first in salt water and then in fresh water, and cleansing it gently with towels. If she has clothing, it is carefully given back to her clean and mended. The altar is then draped with a clean white cloth and she is stood on it, in a place of honor. Candles and incense are lit, salt and water are sprinkled. Then each goes to a different part of the property and restores the other altars, making sure that they are clean and ordered.)

[Pagan Book of Hours]

Beltane History – Celebrating May Day

Beltane History – Celebrating May Day

By Patti Wigington


The Fires of Tara:

Beltane kicks off the merry month of May, and has a long history. This fire festival is celebrated on May 1 with bonfires, Maypoles, dancing, and lots of good old fashioned sexual energy. The Celts honored the fertility of the gods with gifts and offerings, sometimes including animal or human sacrifice. Cattle were driven through the smoke of the balefires, and blessed with health and fertility for the coming year. In Ireland, the fires of Tara were the first ones lit every year at Beltane, and all other fires were lit with a flame from Tara.

Roman Influences:

The Romans, always known for celebrating holidays in a big way, spent the first day of May paying tribute to their Lares, the gods of their household. They also celebrated the Floralia, or festival of flowers, which consisted of three days of unbridled sexual activity. Participants wore flowers in their hair (much like May Day celebrants later on), and there were plays, songs, and dances. At the end of the festivities, animals were set loose inside the Circus Maximus, and beans were scattered around to ensure fertility. The fire festival of Bona Dea was also celebrated on May 2nd.

A Pagan Martyr:

May 6 is the day of Eyvind Kelve in Norse celebrations. Eyvind Kelve was a pagan martyr who was tortured and drowned on the orders of King Olaf Tryggvason for refusing to give up his pagan beliefs. A week later, Norwegians celebrate the Festival of the Midnight Sun, which pays tribute to the Norse sun goddess. This festival marks the beginning of ten straight weeks without darkness.

The Greeks and Plynteria:

Also in May, the Greeks celebrated the Plynteria in honor of Athena, the goddess of wisdom and battle, and the patroness of the city of Athens (which was named after her). The Plynteria includes the ritual cleansing of Athena’s statue, along with feasting and prayers in the Parthenon. On the 24th, homage is paid to the Greek moon-goddess Artemis (goddess of the hunt and of wild animals). Artemis is a lunar goddess, equivalent to the Roman moon-goddess Diana – she is also identified with Luna, and Hecate.

The Green Man Emerges:

A number of pre-Christian figures are associated with the month of May, and subsequently Beltane. The entity known as the Green Man, strongly related to Cernunnos, is often found in the legends and lore of the British Isles, and is a masculine face covered in leaves and shrubbery. In some parts of England, a Green Man is carried through town in a wicker cage as the townsfolk welcome the beginning of summer. Impressions of the Green Man’s face can be found in the ornamentation of many of Europe’s older cathedrals, despite edicts from local bishops forbidding stonemasons from including such pagan imagery.


A related character is Jack-in-the-Green, a spirit of the greenwood. References to Jack appear in British literature back as far as the late sixteenth century. Sir James Frazer associates the figure with mummers and the celebration of the life force of trees. Jack-in-the-Green was seen even in the Victorian era, when he was associated with soot-faced chimney sweeps. At this time, Jack was framed in a structure of wicker and covered with leaves, and surrounded by Morris dancers. Some scholars suggest that Jack may have been a ancestor to the legend of Robin Hood.

Ancient Symbols, Modern Rites:

Today’s Pagans and Wiccans celebrate Beltane much like their ancestors did. A Beltane ritual usually involves lots of fertility symbols, including the obviously-phallic Maypole dance. The Maypole is a tall pole decorated with flowers and hanging ribbons, which are woven into intricate pattern by a group of dancers. Weaving in and out, the ribbons are eventually knotted together by the time the dancers reach the end.

In some Wiccan traditions, Beltane is a day in which the May Queen and the Queen of Winter battle one another for supremacy. In this rite, borrowed from practices on the Isle of Man, each queen has a band of supporters. On the morning of May 1, the two companies battle it out, ultimately trying to win victory for their queen. If the May Queen is captured by her enemies, she must be ransomed before her followers can get her back.

There are some who believe Beltane is a time for the faeries — the appearance of flowers around this time of year heralds the beginning of summer and shows us that the fae are hard at work. In early folklore, to enter the realm of faeries is a dangerous step — and yet the more helpful deeds of the fae should always be acknowledged and appreciated. If you believe in faeries, Beltane is a good time to leave out food and other treats for them in your garden or yard.

For many contemporary Pagans, Beltane is a time for planting and sowing of seeds — again, the fertility theme appears. The buds and flowers of early May bring to mind the endless cycle of birth, growth, death and rebirth that we see in the earth. Certain trees are associated with May Day, such as the Ash, Oak and Hawthorn. In Norse legend, the god Odin hung from an Ash tree for nine days, and it later became known as the World Tree, Yggdrasil.

If you’ve been wanting to bring abundance and fertility of any sort into your life — whether you’re looking to concieve a child, enjoy fruitfulness in your career or creative endeavors, or just see your garden bloom — Beltane is the perfect time for magical workings related to any type of prosperity.