We had a lovely, lovely, lovely ritual last night. A whole new text, only loosely based on previous years, was ours to manifest. It came out great. (It is a bit tricky for me to say things like this, as I am the primary ritual writer for JaguarMoon.)
We’ve been unhappy with our circle casting for a number of years. For one thing, the words are lifted right from Silver RavenWolf andÂ Gypsy (which I only discovered a couple of years ago.) For another: they refer to a direction/element/color system we don’t actually follow.
Black Spirits and White/ Red Spirits and Gray/ Hearken to the tune I say . . . East is red for the break of day/ South is white for noon’s tide of power/ in the West is twilight gray/ North is black for the place of power
That was the original. Like I said, we don’t follow that color system for the directions. We like the feel, and the rhyme, but not the substance.
But I don’t write well when the Muse is not present, and a new circle casting just didn’t come to me. (We’ve tried a few alternates over this year, but they were all pretty clunky.) Then, about two weeks ago, Inspiration came and the words just flowed.
We are *much* happier with the new text and will be incorporating them into future rituals.
While I was re-writing that section, I was nagged to take a look t the body of the rite. Sure enough, changes were needed there as well. The original had an elaborate dance and kiss — based on the Farrars’ ritual (see: A Witch’s Bible). Its ok, but as I was refelcting on it I realized that the whole ‘give me but one kiss’ and giggling dance betwee the Youth and the Maiden wasn’t really appropriate. Imbolc is the time of Lugh, the Young God. (Yes, it is also a celebration of Brigit, but this is the God’s time of year, why are we focusing so much on Her, not Him? He is young and glorious and the whole winter doldrums thing is getting Him down, just a bit. Ostara is the time of Their sacred marriage (just as Beltane is the time of Their loving and Litha is when the tide of power shifts to Her). So we basically took Her out of the ritual (She’s there, but not as an Aspect or Name) and focused on Lugh. On the practical side, we lit the sacred fires and cast or dreams into the fire to manifest in the coming year.
It was a good ritual — clean and cohesive. I’m looking forward to re-writing Ostara to bring it more inline with the idea of the Marriage.