The Solar wheel of the year is how the sun phases relate to,
the ‘sun’ god, deities, magick and sabbats
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A must have in any grimoire/journal, is to have a wheel of the year, to learn it & work with it. It is our cyclic seasons & all the energies within. From the chapter 'grimoires'
The wheel is an endless cycle of the seasons in terms of a turning wheel ‘the Wheel of the Year, which also recognizes the eight seasonal turning points (arms of the wheel). As One arm proceeds in the North, the opposite arm in the South moves away, generating momentum...
Personally I refer them to tides of the season, for spring doesn’t visit and leave in one or two days – yet alone the bounty’s each season brings. On and after these eight dates (turning points) great nature based seasonal rituals are celebrated (i.e. May Day, Wassailing) these turning points or arms of the wheel are referred to as sabbats.
We attune ourselves to the seasonal rhythms’ of nature by first recognising/observing the changes, by celebrating them, and then by living within each seasons bounties.
Traditionally the wheel is both a solar and a lunar cycle. We once would mark the passing of time based on the moon phases and by the cropping cycles. These are times of celebration as we mark the turning of the Wheel of the Year. In the druids grove, we also mark the seasons by the trees, which also coincides with the solar wheel of the year. The grove also supply’s us both the ogham alphabet (language by default) and the ogham as a divination tool, but more on that later.
There are four predominant solar rituals/waves, which are essentially Male/God rituals where the phases of the Sun are celebrated. There are also four predominant earth orientated rituals/waves, which are essentially Female/Goddess rituals where the changes felt on Mother Earth are celebrated. As mother earth turns her face towards,
or away from, our ever present, ever loving Sungod.
The Procession of the Sabbats
Samhain The God departs and the Goddess morns, but knows he will return at Yule (resurrected as such) Hence why it’s a time of death, contacting spirits now that the veil is thinnest which funny enough is also thinnest across the wheel in the opposite hemisphere at this time. Samhain also marks the final third harvest. Any crops not harvested are left as a sacrifice to the Goddess during Yule.
Yule The Goddess gives birth to the God. A time of rebirth with candles alight to welcome back the Sun after the longest night and shortest day. In the opposite hemisphere it is now Litha, midsummer wherein there is the longest day and shortest night. Gifts given are associated to the Holly King (also called Old Nick by the Norse but was appropriated by Christianity to turn him into Saint Nicholas) who is departing to make way for the Oak king. Christianty also turned the name ‘Old Nick’ into the name of the mythical devil/horned God.
Imbolc The Goddess recovers from birth, rejuvenated and the God is a spirited youth, a time for purification and dedication. The opposite hemisphere is now entering into Lughnasadh’s harvest named after the Celt ‘Lugh’
Ostara The vernal equinox. The God and Goddess walk the fields, causing the critters to reproduce. The first day of spring inspires renewal and creativity. The seed buried is resurrected and now begins its move back into the real world as anew. The opposite hemisphere is now in its second harvest of Mabon.
Beltane The God and the Goddess unite, celebrating healing, fertility and the flowers are aplenty. The opposite hemisphere enters into the third final harvest of the year in Samhain.
Litha Often referred to as midsummer and is the peak of fertility, celebrating health, purification, dedication and love. The opposite hemisphere now proceeds into Yule with the shortest day and longest night.
Lughnasadh The God impregnates the Goddess with himself, feasting on fruity drinks and breads at this first harvest. The opposite hemisphere now proceeds into Imbolc, before spring arrives.
Mabon The God prepares to leave and the Goddess rests, a time of feasting and the second harvest of the year. The opposite hemisphere now proceeds into Ostara ‘Spring’.
The Sabbats Lessons
The Sabbats tell a story, which even the correlates with this wheel and the sabbats. For the sake of grasping the concept of God and Goddess, think of them as energies. The changing seasons are symbolised by relationship between the Goddess and the God, and the effects this has on the fruitfulness of the Earth. There are many variations on these stories and here are some of my favourite as the wheel turns.
According to the ancient Celts, the year began at Samhain with the final gathering of crops and the slaughter of livestock. This was because they could not keep many animals fed throughout the winter months. In other traditions the cycle begins at Yule. This is the time when the Goddess gives birth to a sun, the God (later to become her lover).
As the ‘Sun’ grows hotter in the sky, she gives birth to the God of Nature, the Green Man, and the crops we eat. One reason for this difficulty is our attempt to marry together two quite different traditions. Because of my take on the sabbats as sub seasons I find it easy to combine both as though it was a in-between time and time of changing into a new cycle.
An important note not all witches are ‘Wiccans’ wiccans are on a different path/religion formed by Janet/Stewart Farrar and Gerald Gardner who brought in the aspect of the Goddess and her Consort in the Sabbats in a more human/sexual manner. Their Sabbats follow the union of the Goddess and her Consort, to the birth of the Sun God at Yule, youth of the Sun God at spring, the chase at Beltane, marriage at Midsummer and death of the Sun God at Mabon. These can be rites of procession, however I’m a follower of the old ways and honour is a very high ideal. I see Wicca as no different to Christianity, which is why it is probably a recognized religion.
The Sabbats also teach a striving for balance between the outer external life (male) and the consciousness-directed inner life (female). The inner life must be the ruler of the outer life as the earth is in giving life. Through the Goddess and the feminine path, we will be able to bring into balance the masculine and through the God we are able to bring balance to the feminine parts of ourselves.
The Sabbats are also keys for working with pantheons and growing manner (two paths centre around this the ‘kitchen’ & hedge’ witches) but botany is essential to all in the craft. Sabbats add value, direction and fruits to daily life. Birthing new ideas or a new way of living life, having balance in your live, celebrating and being thankful for what we have not only in each other but being thankful for the food that comes from the Sun and the Great Mother. They’re also about dealing with loss of loved ones and letting go of things no longer needed to make room once again for the birth of new ideas. Dancing the dance of life and live from the lessons learned from the Gods, as we make our journey on the Wheel that the Lady ‘Goddess’ turns.
13 months and a day Aryan Calender notes
This version of the Celtic calendar is based on the Beth-Luis, beginning on the Winter Solstice. The Celtic tree calendar is made up of thirteen months and day. Each month is named for a tree which signifies particular qualities of that moon during that lunar cycle. The Celts used a lunar cycle which consists of the thirteen months which correlates to the thirteen constants.....
Our original calendar was plagiarized with Christianity and meanings taken over,
With the Gregorian calendar as mentioned earlier. These are the days as we know them now:
As well as our gods and goddesses turned into Saints under the Semite deity such as the Celt goddess Brigid of the hearth, forge and they turned her into saint Brighid. And On and on it goes. Enjoy seeing time through the eyes of your early ancestors...
By Druid & Witch, Ravenmor Fox
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