Father Sun shines brightly
Warming mother Earth
Joining in creation
- Prounounced “bell-tayn”, Beltane is the second Fire Festival and is derived from Irish Gaelic ‘Bealtaine’ or the Scottish Gaelic ‘Bealtuinn’, meaning ‘Bel-fire’, the fire of the Celtic god of light (Bel, Beli or Belinus)
- Dances were performed around fires to eliminated disease and misfortune from growing crops. (The fires became Maypoles in more modern times!)
- The Goddess is seen to enter the “mother” phase of her cycle.
- It is believed that the Queen of Faeries may ride by on her search for people to lure to the Fey Kingdom. So, if you hear hoof-beats on Beltane, do not look! The Queen may just choose you!
- Sky-clad witches jumping over ‘need-fires’ for healing and protection.
- ‘beating the bounds’ ~ walking the circuit of your property
- Repairing fences and boundary markers
- Archer tournaments
- Morris Dancing
- Sword dancing
- Feasting, merry-making
- Maypole dancing
- Riding hobby-horses
- Sky-clad Village Maiden (elected Queen of the May) would ride through the village (remember the tune: Ride a Cock Horse to Banbury Cross???)
- Hand-fasting rituals
- Ensuring a child for the following year by leaping the Beltane Fires with your lover.
This is an opportunity to open to the God and Goddess of Youth. Give yourself permission to be ‘child-like’ and enjoy those things that resonate youth to you.
It is an opportunity to:
- Connect to our innate sensuality (in a positive and creative manner)
- Self-reflection and action upon blending the masculine and feminine within each of us.
- Act upon those projects you planned and started during Ostara
- Light your own bonfire (as long as it is within local fire regulations!). When the fire is finished, scatter a few of the ashes to the four winds from a hilltop or open space, sending your wishes for the future with them. Bury the rest.
- Alternatively light a large scarlet candle embedded in sand or dirt Drop dried rosemary, lavender or rose petals into the flame. Ask the Universe to send you what you need most.
- Save any fragrant flowers or herbs you pick or are given over the coming weeks to dry and make into potpourri.
- Make a flower garland or fill a vase with flowers (nine is traditional). Make a heart-felt wish on each flower.
- Leave small baskets of flowers on the doorsteps of anyone who is sick or lonely to spread the abundance of the season.
- Visit a local pond or lake just before sunrise and walk round it three times sunwise (clockwise), asking for healing for yourself or loved ones.
- Tie a ribbon to a nearby tree as a way of saying thank you to Mother Nature.
- Run, cycle, dance, swim, roller blade or jump and stir up the energies as a way of building up your inner power.
- If possible go along to one of the traditional May morning celebrations in your area or invite a group of friends for a flower party and ask them all to bring along a few flowers or plants to exchange.
- Make your own Maypole or decorate a tree/branch with Beltane symbols. Dance around it as if no one is watching you J
- Agrimony (matrimony) ~ wonderful for Hand-fasting rituals. Place a red sachet filled with Agrimony between the mattress and sheets of a couple to ensure longevity of a relationship/marriage.
- Basil, Patchouli, Violet, Sandalwood, Jasmine, Rose, Myrrh.
- White and dark green are the most commonly associated colours however all rainbow inspired colours are appropriate.
- Flora, Maia, Demeter, Danu, Bel, Balor, Pan, Cernunnos, Jack-in-the-Green, Venus, Ishtar, Freya, Priapu, Dionysus, and any nature god/goddess.
- frankincense, lilac, passion flower, rose, or vanilla (either blended or by themselves).
- Apple, jarrah, oak, lilac, rose, strawberries.
Food and Beverage associations
- Dairy products; sweets of all kinds, honey, oats (especially oat/barley cakes).
- Red fruits of all kinds e.g. strawberries
- Green herbal salds
- Red or Pink Punch/Wine
- sapphires, bloodstones, emeralds, orange carnelians, and rose quartz
- Ruby (root chakra) balances the physical and emotional heart.
- Jade (Heart Chakra) promotes healing and a sense of belonging
- Pearl (sacral chakra) energies our seat of personal power, balances emotions and increases health/vitality.
- Ribbons, Summer Flowers, Round Breads, Apples, Cattle, Bonfires, May Pole (a symbols of fertility), candles in the fresh pastel colours of spring, large candles (represent balefires).
Beltane Ritual Potpourri
Recipe by Gerina Dunwich
- 45 drops frankincense oil
- 1 cup oak moss
- 1 cup dried bluebells
- 1 cup dried lilac
- 1 cup dried marigold
- 1 cup dried meadowsweet
- 1 cup dried rosebuds and petals
- 1 cup dried yellow cowslips
Mix the frankincense oil with the oak moss and then add the remaining ingredients. Stir the potpourri well and store in a tightly covered ceramic or glass container.
(The above recipe for “Beltane Ritual Potpourri” is quoted directly from Gerina Dunwich’s book “The Wicca Spellbook: A Witch’s Collection of Wiccan Spells, Potions and Recipes”, page 162, A Citadel Press Book, Carol Publishing Group, 1994/1995)
Recipe by Scott Cunningham
- 3 parts Frankincense
- 2 parts Sandal wood
- 1 part Woodruff
- 1 part Rose petals
- a few drops Jasmine oil
- a few drops Neroli oil
Burn during Wiccan rituals on Beltane (April 30th) or on May Day for fortune and favors and to attune with the changing of the seasons.
(The above recipe for “Beltane Incense” is quoted directly from Scott Cunningham’s book “The Complete Book of Incenses, Oils & Brews”, page 60, Llewellyn Publications, 1989/1992.)
The Wicca Spellbook: A Witch’s Collection of Wiccan Spells, Potions and Recipes”, page 162, A Citadel Press Book, Carol Publishing Group, 1994/1995
The Complete Book of Incenses, Oils & Brews”, page 60, Llewellyn Publications, 1989/1992