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Subscribe to this list via RSS Blog posts tagged in full moon ritual
Chinese Harvest Festival: Moons & Mooncakes

I am very fortunate to be marrying into a Chinese family so I have been learning about the traditions. Coming up this week is the official celebration of the Harvest Moon. In China, the full or Harvest Moon in October is celebrated with mooncakes, which are offered to the Goddess Chang-O, the Lady in the Moon. This is the time when wheat and rice are harvested, making it an important time of thanksgiving for food to have on hand through the winter season.

The rice and the wheat are baked into cakes that look like the big round moon up in the sky and are used as offerings, along with melons and pomegranates, to the goddess. The women making the mooncakes put their intentions into them by whispering secret wishes into the batter. The unifying action of blending and mixing the tasty cakes represents family harmony. One sweet aspect of this ritual is the selection of a young girl to enter the “heavenly garden.” At the ritual feast for the goddess of the Harvest Moon, this young lady becomes the prophet of her family and community, and she is urged to share her visions about the coming year and the prosperity of the village or the land. Feasting on mooncakes and other ritual foods is followed by games and singing under the bright light of Chang-O’s moon. Here is a traditional wish for the season

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Elemental , My Dear: Harnessing the Power of Fire

I am inspired by the teachings of the brilliant Yoruban priestess, Luisah Teish, who told me she keeps a votive glass candle burning in her fireplace (where safe) at all times to “harness Magic Fire in another way.”  

On the next full moon evening, gather a group around your hearth or build a bonfire on the beach or a beautiful fire in a safety-certified fire ring in a park. Ask everyone to bring a glass votive candle, preferably one of the seven-day candles you find at grocery stores or metaphysical shops. After everyone is comfortably seated around the fire, speak aloud:

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Rose Moon Ritual: A Full Moon Ceremony

This ritual is simply lovely and taught to me by a friend who has the good fortune of spending lots of time in sacred place around the world. She calls this the Rose Moon Ritual. Essential elements for this ritual are incense, offerings of fruit and lots of flowers, rice, and holy or blessed water. Make sure to have roses on the altar and rose petals scattered all around so the sight and sweet scent stimulates the senses 

 

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Urban Coven: Strawberry Moon

If you didn't know it was a ritual, you wouldn't know it was a ritual.

An hour before moonrise, we gather at the coven bench in the park.

We swap news, laugh, eat fruit and cookies. Our newest member is just now back from five months in the Middle East; it's Sun and Moon to my eyes to see her again. She's giddy with the freedom of it all: public paganism. Being second generation, she'd never experienced the broom closet before: the pagan generation gap.

We toast her return with (ahem) iced tea from the thermos.

Somewhere behind the tree line, the full Moon is rising unseen. We sing to her, then go downhill to the lake.

Each has her own intent. Silent, we circle the already-dark water, its surface stippled with south wind; soon the Full Moon will shine from its midst. The power builds as we go.

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Recent Comments - Show all comments
  • Steven Posch
    Steven Posch says #
    I hope so too, Thesseli. Thanks.
  • Thesseli
    Thesseli says #
    For women, going outside into the open on our own for this kind of thing is dangerous...for us, we need others to come with us, fo
  • Thesseli
    Thesseli says #
    Utterly lovely. I wish I could ever experience something like this.

Posted by on in SageWoman Blogs

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"There is a fire song in the depths of your soul that makes your heart sing. It doesn't matter if no one else can hear your melody, this is your song, not theirs. So move to your own beat and dance to your own drum. Follow your light and see where it leads. This is your story; this is your dream."

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Corn Moon Celebration

The word "harvest," immediately conjures up the calendar pages of September and October in the mind's eye – replete with dried corn husks, gourds, pumpkins, red wine, and tart juicy apples. Although all of these images are thoroughly justified, the first of the harvest fests technically begins August 1. Lammas/Lughnasadh has come and gone, but you can feel the full ripeness and end of the summer all around you. It is there in the rich green leaves and vivid colors of plant life and flowers – their lush smell from the warmth of the summer sun at its peak. The corn moon rises this Thursday the 18th. What better occasion than to gather some of your clan near and toast to the changing of seasons, then?

If you have a craft brewer in your midst, by all means, this is the time to invite them to share their bounty! Likewise with anyone who dabbles in home fermentation in the way of kombucha or wine. Definitely roast some ears of corn from a local farmer's market over an open flame, and toss some fresh Caprese salad with bursting cherry tomatoes (surely a guest had good luck in their garden this year), fragrant basil leaves (ditto), creamy mozzarella (cheesemakers step up) and drizzle lightly with extra virgin olive oil and a good three leaf balsamic vinegar. Plump blackberries or plums (anyone's backyard pickings), would certainly be appropriate at this gathering, as would any just-caught perch that the fisherperson in your group would be willing to pan-fry for the crowd. Make it a true Pagan potluck where each guest can bring to the table some of their own personal harvest for others to sample. As host/hostess, you could bake up some little "Wolf and Moon Cookies" for dessert. Here's a favorite recipe that I like to go to:

     LEMON WOLF COOKIES
     *If you don't own a wolf cookie cutter, have no fear! Just make little full moons, half moons   
     and new moons by rolling out the dough and firmly cutting the shapes out of the bottom of a 
     shot glass. If you do own one, make the wolves first, and then the moons out of the left-over dough.
     4 1/2 cups flour
     1/2 teaspoon salt
     1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
     1/2 teaspoon allspice
     1/4 teaspoon cloves
     1/4 teaspoon ginger
     2 1/2 sticks of butter, softened
     1 cup sugar
     6 oz. cream cheese
     1 tablespoon grated lemon peel
     5 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
     Stir dry ingredients together and set aside.
     Cream butter, sugar, cream cheese and grated lemon peel. Mix in fresh lemon juice. Add dry ingredients a little at a time, until well blended. Wrap dough in plastic wrap and chill for 1/2 to 1 hour.
     Preheat oven to 350 F. Roll dough out on a lightly floured surface to 1/8" thick. Dip cookie cutter in flour and cut out your wolf cookies.
     Bake cookies on ungreased cookie sheets for 8-10 minutes.
     ICING
     2 cups confectioner's sugar, sifted
     1 1/2 tablespoons meringue powder
     2 1/2 - 3 tablespoons water
     food coloring (optional)
     Mix sugar and meringue powder in large mixing bowl. Add water and beat at low speed for 8-10 minutes until icing forms peaks. Add food coloring a tiny bit at a time, stirring until you have the color you like.
     Spread on cooled cookies or pipe designs on with a pasty bag. Keep icing tightly covered when not being used.
     (Recipe from Patricia Lynn Bradley, Bark & Bradley®, Inc., adapted by Colleen DuVall)

Sing some songs around the fire pit. Pass one chalice of the last of the home-brew that everyone takes a sip of to further bond your friendship. Finally, partake in a bit of communal moon-watching together. According to space.com, "The next full moon will be the Full Sturgeon Moon of Aug. 18. It will peak at 5:27 a.m. EDT (0927 GMT), but will appear full to the casual stargazer a day prior and after the peak day. August's full moon has also known as the Full Red Moon (because the moon can look reddish through haze), as well as the Green Corn Moon and the Grain Moon."

Resources:
Photo, "Corn And Mazie Field," by franky242 at http://www.freedigitalphotos.net/
http://www.space.com/16830-full-moon-calendar.html
http://dnr.wi.gov/topic/fishing/documents/consumption/HealthDishWisFish.pdf

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Posted by on in SageWoman Blogs

Vision Questb2ap3_thumbnail_Screen-Shot-2016-03-29-at-1.19.56-PM.png

Exhale your question
  out and out again
  into the fresh North Mountain air

See the answer
  all around
It waddles with leisurely curiosity
  on the path ahead
Or drops blessed from the sky

Hear the answer
  in the rolling songs
  of the Aspen trees
The rhythm of tides
  drumming the shore

Touch the answer
  with hands, feet, heart
  Earth, Water, Fire, Sky
Dancing with mothers, sisters,
  Lovers, friends

Taste the answer
  in tender kisses
  of salty sea and tears
Ripening fruit the earth offers
Words and music on my tongue
  both thanks and prayer

Embrace your question 
  And an answer will find you

© Andrea M. Keber 2010

Laurie Bauers (Hakalau, HI) is living the dream on an organic farm with her husband and son in Hawaii. She paints and creates often, hopefully inspiring others to live their dream. etsy.com/shop/ArtofLaurieABauers 

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