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New Year’s Day ritual

January 1, 2015

So several days ago when I asked my child what he wanted to do for to celebrate New Year’s Day, he told me he wanted to do a ritual.  This surprised me, because while he occasionally will join me in my daily devotions (which have slid into oblivion since mid October), he has never asked me to do a ritual.

Altar after the ritual

Altar after the ritual

So we sat down and planned out how we wanted to do it.  The mutual decision was to base it upon the Noumenia using a ritual that was longer than my daily devotional but shorter than the full fledged ritual.  So I rewrote the Noumenia opening prayer but used the same main prayer.  I cobbled together a child friendly ritual format.  Offerings were mini-snickers bars and pine needle incense (boychild’s choice).  As part of the ritual, we planted an ‘apple blossom’ amaryllis as part offering to the earthkin and part reminder that it will be green again.  The dirt was watered with (melted and warmed up) snow.  Changed the altar set-up too and after we finished pulled some omen cards.  All in all it went fairly well.

After the cut is the text (written down post ritual and cleaned up a bit so it is a bit smoother) of what we did.  The ritual is more along the ADF-style of rituals.  I share this because several have asked how we do our rituals.

Oh, I also had him running around at the beginning of ritual, after the bell had been rung.  He opened the back door and took a fan and ran around the house waving and chasing the old year out.  We then closed that door and opened the front door.  He then ran around ushering the new year around the house.  We then yelled “Happy New Year” before shutting the door.  He thought it very strange and tiring but rather fun.

Supplies:  silver pendant, water (purification, well, blessings cup), salt, rosemary needle, Hestia candle, charcoal , Kindred offerings of snickers and incense, prayer book, and omen cards.

Opening:  Ring bell 3 times to activate sacred space:

With this intent I declare this hallowed ground
With heart and mind and flesh and bone
Here we stand in the ways of old.
Silver the Well:  Bounty to the Deep (I used my silver oak tree pendant)
Light the Flame: I raise Hestia’s flame
Hail Hestia, Lady of the Hearth, Keeper of the Flame
Wherever you go, the gods have a home.
Enter this space, make it your own,
Give me your blessing and guidance
Hallow this right, grant each just desire.

Purification:  In a bowl, add water, salt and flaming needle of rosemary.
By water, land and flame
May all that hinders me be released,
May I be pure in thought (touch drop to forehead)
May I be pure in speech (touch drop to tongue)
May I be pure in heart (touch drop to heart)
May I be pure in action (touch drops to hands)

Ground and Center:
The Well, the Flame, the Tree
flow and glow and grow in me
Rooted deep and crowned high
I bridge the earth and the sky
Sea around me
Earth below
Sky above
the Worlds stand firm
within and without
I am one and we are many
Fellowship, in solitude
Here I stand to greet the day
and welcome in the light
with all those that walk
the Old Ways alone.

Toast the Kindreds with cup of fellowship:

I drink to the Ancestors (take a sip)
I drink to the Earth Kin
(take a sip)
I drink to the Gods
(take a sip and set aside for after offerings)

Ritual Purpose:

Oh Blessed Kindreds, just as you are timeless
so is the seasonal cycle, ever turning, yet ever changing
Winter, Spring, Summer, Fall.
On this day, we come before you
to mark the changing of the year, from old to new.
A minor way point in the Universe
but one that holds meaning to us.
We choose to acknowledge this change
by sending prayers and offerings to you
in concert with the new beginning so that we may:
reforge the sacred bonds of kharis;
renew the hope with which the gods bless humankind;
and strengthen the bridge between your hearts and ours.
By the Well, the Flame, the Tree
We hail and honor our Kindreds Three.

 then we recited the prayer “Be welcome here now and always“.

Offering Prayers: light incense
Guides, Guardians and Grandparents
I call to thee who came before me in this world,
As You are Mine, so I am Yours.
Descended from Your Blood, your Spirit, your Explorations.
I reach out to you, across the well.
to honor your knowledge and experiences.
Ancestors accept my offering! (offer candy)

Nature Spirits, Worldly Spirits, Spirits of Place
I call to all the beings with whom I share this world
Those of the mountains and of the sea,
Of the forests, fields and plains
Those of running and still waters,
Those of the wind and of the flame
Nature Spirits, Worldly Spirits, Spirits of Place
I reach out to you in friendship and peace,
that we may share our world in harmony.
Nature Spirits, accept my offering! (offer candy)

Gods of the Land, of the Sea, of the Sky
I call to the Theoi who order my world
Khthonic Ones, Celestial Ones, First Ones and Titans
Those of the earth, below the earth and above the earth
Those of the city and those of the countryside
Those of the home and those of the wild
Those that are familiar and those that are strangers
I reach out to you, through the flame
To honor you, by whichever name you cared to be called
Divine Ones accept my offering! (offer candy)

We then gave each other a snickers with while saying: May you never hunger.

Omens: 

Top are mine, bottom are his.

Top are mine, bottom are his.

The Ancestors:  Mine (Land 3/East-Spring) –  a message of new beginnings, his (Well 2/Water sacrifice) – a reminder to remember and honor them
The Gods:  Mine (Well 7/Well of Healing) – a message of healing/mending, his (Fire 8/Need Fire) – a reminder to talk with them so they can know him and his needs
The Naturekin:  Mine (Gods 6/Witch Mother) – names me guide and protector for him, his (Gods 3/Gatekeeper) – advising him to build a relationship with Hermes who will help with the walking in other worlds (as told he needed to do over the summer)

Finish Toast to the Kindreds: 
In honor of the Kindreds, I drink this cup of fellowship (drain cup)

Our rite is at its end.
Blessed Kindreds, thank you for your presence and your generosity.
Stay if you will, go if you must.  Hail and Farewell.

Closing:

May this day be filled with peace.
A peace be born within,
setting my heart ablaze,
to shines forth into the world,
becoming a source of healing
for all those that cross my path

Extinguish flame: Hail Hestia, Lady of the Hearth Keeper of the Flame
Where ever you go the gods have a home. 
Thank you for filling this space and making it your own
Though this flame is extinguished, it burns eternally in my heart.
Hail Hestia!
Remove Silver: Blessings of the deep flow within me.
Pull in the energies of Well and Flame that you sent out until it surrounds only yourself
By the Heaven’s above and the earth below
May this lighten my heart and smooth my way
so mote it be through Ma’at

All is as it was before, only better.  (Ring bell 3 times to close out ritual)

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