Mystic Ash Grove Imbolg - 2004

  • Earth Mother - Cornmeal
  • Well - Silver or Crystal
  • Fire - Oil
  • Land - Cornmeal
  • Sea - Water
  • Sky - Incense
  • Outdwellers - Ale
  • Manannan - Shells
  • Ancestors - Sage
  • Nature Spirits - Herbal Mix
  • Shining Ones - Oil
  • Gods and Goddesses - Oil
  • Waters of Life - Mead or Ale and Water

The Sacred Grove is arranged as described. The celebrants hallow the Grove; the Fire is lit, the Well is filled, the Tree is blessed.

 

Consecration of Space
followed by a musical signal

 

Well:

Sacred well, let your waters flow down, down to all the sweet waters beneath the earth. Once again we ask you to become our mouth of the earth, our eye of the earth, our opening of the earth. Beeche.

 

Fire:

Sacred fire, become once again all the fires who have burned and who ever will. And may you carry our words, praise and love up to the Gods and Goddesses, Ancestors and Nature Spirits. Beeche.

 

Tree:

Sacred Bile, roots going into our Mother below and your crown stretching to the heavens above. We ask that you connect our world with all the other worlds. Beeche.

 

 

Procession (chant - We Approach the Sacred Grove by Sean Miller)

 

With singing, arrive and circle the hallows deosil. The Druids complete the sigil, then give the opening prayers.

 

Aspurging and Censing as people enter the area

 

Well:

May we wash away all Earthly cares.

 

Fire:

May the Spirit rise within you.

 

 

Opening Prayers

 

Chant: (Author unknown)
Earth Mother, we honor your body
Earth Mother, we honor your bones
Earth Mother, we sing to your spirit
Earth Mother, we sing to your stones

Senior Druid: (cornmeal)

It is the custom among our people, our folk and our grove, to bestow a kiss upon our Mother.
O beloved mother of all
From whose starry womb the green earth springs
You who are the bearer of all life
We pray you bless and uphold this rite.
Mother accept our offering!

 

 

All: Mother of all accept our offering

 

 

Two Powers Meditation

 

 

Well, Fire and Tree

 

 

Well: (silver or crystal)

O sacred waters that flow and swirl beneath all being accept our offering!
Let us know the elder depths within ourselves the source of all,
the well of elder wisdom
Sacred Well, flow within us!

 

 

 

All: Sacred well, flow within us!

 

Fire: (oil)

O sacred fire that consumes and transforms
True and holy light of the shining ones
Accept our offering! O sacrificed and sacrificer
Let holy flame warm our spirits and our lives.
Sacred Fire, burn within us!

 

 

All: Sacred fire, burn within us!

 

Tree: (sprinkled and censed)

O sacred pillar, boundary of all worlds,
Stand at the center of the sky,
Stand at the center of the sea,
Stand at the center of the land on which we dwell.
Let us be deepened in your depths
Raised to your heights

Strengthened in your strength
Crann naomh, fas isteach mise!
("crown neev, fahss ish-tack mish-uh")
Sacred Tree, grow within us!

 

 

All: Sacred tree, grow within us!

 

 

Historical Precedent

 

This is the night of Imbolg, the spoke on the Wheel of the Year that celebrates the revival of life for the Earth Mother and the beginning of spiritual regrowth for her inhabitants. We watch as the waxing light basks and warms the Earth, awakening her from a long winter hibernation. Seeds planted begin to take root. Plant yourself firmly like the Cosmic Tree and feel newborn life replenish your soul. Look to the sky, that your aspirations may reach up like limbs to touch the pinnacles of your devotion. May we be refreshed and renewed as we rejoice in ritual and song in honor of the Goddess Brighid, bringer of Light, the goddess of healing, poetry, fertility and inspiration.

 

Naming the Deity of Ritual

 

Goddess:

Brighid,
Known for many skills,

Daughter of the Daghda and Boann,
Mother of the sacred flame.
We acknowledge you!

 

 

All: We acknowledge you!

 

 

Establishing the Boundaries

 

Land: (cornmeal sprinkled around the outside of the sacred space)

By the Fire and Well. Let the blessed land be the founding of this sacred Grove. Let the land hold firm and not open up and swallow us.

 

Sea: (water sprinkled around the outside of the sacred space)

By the cleansing of water, let the primal sea be the boundary of the grove. Let the Sea not rise up and drown us.

 

Sky: (incense is thrown into the fire)

By the light of the Fire, let the shining sky be the roof of this Grove. May the Sky not fall down upon us.

 

 

Outdwellers

 

Ancient Dark Ones,
You who dwell in the outer dark,

You cold of heart and dim of mind.
Trouble not our working, for we leave behind, our weakness and perversity, our hatred and spite, our cowardice and ignorance.
We offer this ale for being the keepers of these
energies, so we may continue our rite in Peace and Harmony.

 

Opening The Gates

 

O Manannan, Lord of the Gates, Lord of Wisdom, open the ways for us. We walk in your holy ways, we walk the Sacred Road. Share your magic with us, ward us as we walk in safety.

Manannan MacLir, accept our sacrifice!

 

All: Manannan MacLir, accept our sacrifice!

 

Now, lord of ways, join your magic with ours.
(each ritual officer opens their gates)

Fire:

Let the fire open as a gate.

 

Well:

Let the well open as a gate.

 

Senior Druid:

Let the tree be the crossroads of all worlds. Open as a road to our voices and to the spirits.

 

In Unison:

Let the gates be open!

 

 

All: Let the gates be open!

 

 

Kindred Offerings

 

Chant:
Gods and Dead and Mighty Sidhe,
Powers of Earth and Sky and Sea,
By Fire and Well, by Sacred Tree
Offerings we make to ye

Ancestors: (sage)

People of old times, our Ancestors, our Kindred.
Share with us the bond of life upon Earth.
Share with us comfort, knowledge and blessing.
Speak to our hearts that we may become one with you all.
Ancestors, accept our sacrifice!

 

 

All: Ancestors, accept our sacrifice

 

Nature Spirits: (herbal mix)

Spirits of old times and of this place, our companions, our teachers.
Share with us the renewal of the Earth.
Share with us comfort, knowledge and blessing.
Speak to our hearts that we may be one with you all.
Nature Spirits, accept our sacrifice!

 

 

All: Nature Spirits, accept our sacrifice!

 

Shining Ones: (oil)

Gods of old times, our mothers, our fathers.
Share with us your power to regenerate the Earth.
Share with us comfort, knowledge and blessing.
Speak to our hearts that we may be one with you all.
Shining Ones, accept our sacrifice!

 

 

All: Shining Ones, accept our sacrifice!

 

After all the offerings have been made, the druids recenter the company and lead an attunement to all the spirits that have been called, and a proper chant or hymn is sung to the three kindreds.

 

Invocation of Deity
(oil)

 

Come, daughter of the Eternity
Come, Brighid of the Flame
Come, sister of Infinity
Bring healing to the lame

Come, Mother of the Waters,
Come, Brighid of the Well
Come, Muse of many daughters

 

Come, lover of the Anvil
Come, Brighid of the Hammers
Come, Artesan mose able
Sing of sparks and glimmers

Brighid, we invoke thee
Known to many ages
Healer, bard, and artesan she
Many names to call her own

Midwife, war chief, Goddess
Come into our Nemeton
Our hearts we offer guileless
Come into our Nemeton

Senior Druid:

And at this time we call upon our Grove patrons and matrons, Daghda and Danu, Odin and Freya, we ask them to join with us tonight for our working.

 

Senior Druid:

Now is the time for individual offerings, if there are any among us who would like to make a praise offering, be it song, poem, or story, you may do this now.

 

 

Sacrifice and Omen

 

Senior Druid:

So we have given of our love and our wealth to the lord and lady. Now let our voices arise on the fire, let our voices sound in the well let our words pass the boundary to the otherworlds. O lord, O lady, we give you our love, our respect, our devotion as we pray you...

Lady and Lord, accept our sacrifice!

 

 

All: Lady and Lord, accept our sacrifice!

 

All are led to send their energy through the gates to the powers, meditating on the deities and the nobles.

Senior Druid:

Having prayed to the powers, let us open to them, asking what blessings they offer us in return.

 

Omen is taken as usual. The seer then interprets the omen, leading the company to contemplate the things they would ask of the powers, especially as suggested by the omen. Company recenters in preparation for the blessing.

Chant: Power of the spirits

 

The Blessing

 

Senior Druid:

Close your eyes and let your body still. Using your inner vision, let your mind roam to look around and above us. Look at the crowd of friends gathered on this plane and on the other planes. Spirits of this place, Ancestors and Shining Ones, all of them looking at us with love in their hearts! We ask you now, gathered host, return to us your blessings! Give them to us into this cup of water and this cup of mead. Gathered Host, we ask this of you!
Behold the Waters of Life!

 

 

All: Behold the Waters of Life!

 

We give this first offering to those of the Fold and of the members of the Grove that couldn't be with us tonight. May these blessings give them the strength and nourishment to do what they need!

Chant:
Pour the waters, raise the cup
Drink your share of wisdom deep
Strength and love now fill us up
As the elder ways we keep
Share the first loaves, break the bread

Eat the fruits of Mother Earth
Strength and love now fill us up
As the elder ways we keep

 

Thanking the Deities
(oil)

 

Brighid, we thank you for your aid and your blessings tonight. As this rite is ending, we give you this gift in parting, given out of love, with nothing asked in return.

Brighid, we thank you!

 

All: Brighid, we thank you!

 

 

Thanking the Kindreds
(oil)

 

Shining Ones:

Shining Ones, we thank you for being with us tonight. As this rite is ending, we give you this gift in parting, given out of love, with nothing asked in return. Shining Ones, we thank you!

 

 

All: Shining Ones, we thank you!

 

Nature Spirits:

Spirits of this Place, we thank you for being with us tonight. As this rite is ending, we give you this gift in parting, given out of love, with nothing asked in return. Spirits of the Earth, we thank you!

 

 

All: Spirits of the Earth, we thank you!

 

Ancestors:

Ancestors, we thank you for being with us tonight. As this rite is ending, we give you this gift in parting, given out of love, with nothing asked in return. Ancestors, we thank you!

 

 

All: Ancestors, we thank you!

 

Senior Druid:

Manannan, once again you have lent your strength to us. You have been our Gatekeeper and Magician. Now that our rite is ending, we give you this gift in parting, given out of love, with nothing asked in return.

 

Senior Druid:

Mother of all, to you we return all we leave unused. Uphold us now in the world as you have in our rite. Mother of all, we thank you!

 

 

All: Mother of all, we thank you!

 

 

Closing the Gates

 

Senior Druid:

Now by the keeper of the gates and by our magic, we end what we began.
(each ritual officer closes their gates)

 

Fire:

Let the Fire be again a fire

 

Well:

Let the Well be again a well

 

Senior Druid:

Let all be as it was before

 

In Unison:

Let the gates be closed!

 

 

All: Let the gates be closed!

 

 

Reversing the Two Powers Meditation

 

 

Closing

 

Senior Druid:

Go now children of the Earth, in peace and harmony, this rite has ended.

 

 

Chant:
Let us journey on

Children of the Earth
Carry the Nemetons blessings
Into our lives and work

As we journey on
Children of the Earth
Let the Nemetons blessings
Bring peace to home and hearth

Author Information

Cathy Wayman

Articles by Cathy Wayman

Ár nDraíocht Féin: A Druid Fellowship, Inc.

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