2.29 am GMT today: Autumn Equinox. New Moon Approaching. Blessings.
I have been ritually honouring the turning points of time ( beginning of a new month, cross-quarters , Equinoxes and Solstices ) on the wheel of the year since an early age – my teens! – in a very spontaneous and nearly religious way, that was dictated only by that inherent connection with nature that we all have as kids.
All transitions in and out of the season are cardinal points of the year and carry a special energy. We can consciously decide to embrace and embody these transitions ( Vinyasas of the Sun and the Moon !) as a ritual, to honour the cosmological flowing of time. Or we can decide to ignore this intelligence built into the cosmos and isolate ourselves from it, going against the grain.
Nature is intrinsically intelligent. Consequentially if we learn to attune our inner clock to its universal micro (hourly/ daily/weekly/ ) and macro cycles ( season/yearly/solar and monthly /lunar) we maximise our chances to live our lives to the fullest, in a happy, enriching and harmonious fashion.
Autumn calls for renewal in the form of letting go. We are urged to reorganise our inner and outer space as thoughts , routines, relationships, and projects . This season calls for inner focus and organised effort, we get to gather all our inner strength and skilfully prepare to approach the end of the year.
As this is quite a turning point we get an extra boost of power from the mighty Durga, The Invincible, that represents the courage that comes from staying connected to one’s heart, the impulse to protect ourselves from negative habits and the force to eradicate them and replace them with good ones.
Happy Ekadasi. Twice a month in the Vedic Lunar Calendar ( and 24 times in the cycle of a solar year) is EKADASi… Ekadasi falls twice in a Lunation ( Lunar month , is calculated as a cycle of 30 days) and it is the perfect time of the month to embrace fasting. Normally a cycle of fasting would last for four consecutive days from Ekadasi to the day before Full Moon or to the day of New Moon. Fasting is not recommended if you are pregnant, on your moon or you are ill. Ekadasi is an auspicious day for fasting and this is the right time of the year for cleansing to be aligned with the flow of Spring. Ekadasi means ( eka= 1 and Dasi = 10 1+10 = 11 ) the 11th day of the Calendar Month, before FULL or to NEW MOON .
Beltane is one of the four great Fire Festivals ( in the fixed signs of Taurus, Leo, Scorpio and Aquarius). In the ancient Celtic calendar, Beltane is celebrated to ushering in the light half of the year, a time of fertility and abundance. In the standard calendar, Beltane is May 1. Astronomically, Beltane is May 5. Celebrations include bonfires lit to honor the solar god Belos, rites of cleansing and purification for prosperity. Also going out in the woods ( in the olden times!) to collect flowers, symbol of the richness of Spring!
Here i include an image of the Maypole. During this festival boys and girls would dance in opposite directions holding the end of a coloured ribbon of the Maypole ( symbol of fertility) so weaving a multicoloured tapestry around the pole. Hope you will dance with your loved one(s!) and offer them flowers to honour this day of renewed abundance in Love!
Beltane used to mark the beginning of summer and was when cattle were driven out to the summer pastures. Rituals were performed to protect the cattle, crops and people, and to encourage growth. Special bonfires were kindled, and their flames, smoke and ashes were deemed to have protective powers. The people and their cattle would walk around the bonfire, or between two bonfires, and sometimes leap over flames or embers. All household fires would be doused and then re-lit from the Beltane bonfire. Doors, windows, byres and the cattle themselves would be decorated with yellow May flowers, perhaps because they evoked fire. In parts of Ireland, people would make a May Bush; a thorn bush decorated with flowers, ribbons and bright shells.