Lughnasssadh of the Southern Hemisphere is less than a week away and I’m throwing it out.
In a previous post Re-articulating the Sabbats, I stated that the Sabbats were a difficult area in my practice, as the Celtic festivals are a bit hard to adapt to my system. Of course Samhain is a wonderful Sabbat and one I’ll celebrate all the time, but as for the other three, it has always been about merely going through the motions rather than feeling a deep connection. This is of course problematic. 11 years into my practice and I’d actually like to feel something during so-called (holi)days.
My Lughnassadh celebration last year was not awful, but it wasn’t what I’d call worthy of much praise either. So it is going, going, gone!
I know many Neo-wiccans would be very hesitant to throw out a major sabbat, but as a person crafting their own system I honestly feel everything I do should have deep meaning to me, including Sabbat celebrations. Many Religious witches understand the difficulty of celebrating the sabbats the way they are meant to be celebrated due to their own climate differences, so they tend to focus on regional seasonal celebrations rather than ones set out by Wicca.
Even though I secularised and put my own system into Lughnassadh, I didn’t like it. It felt forced, and like I wasn’t being true to myself.
I’ve decided that what I’m going to do is replace Lughnassadh with Valentines day. I know this might seem odd, a bit crazy, a bit fluffy even, but it Valentines day always holds such beauty for me. I already celebrate it every year with fervour, I already employ ritual elements and I truly believe that “All acts of love and pleasure are my rituals”.
Last year for Valentines day, I made a hearty pasta dish with love for my boyfriend, I also made yummy cupcakes. This year I’ll make some focaccia, and some heart cakes. Bastet and Hathor will look over my ritual space and every act will be done for my love of the gods and my boyfriend.
In my book “Dancing under an African Moon” it suggests working with Ceres and/or Demeter. This is of course not a bad idea but it cannot really be called “Lughnassadh” then either. I also tend to focus more on the descent of Persephone into the underworld and Demeter’s grieving during Samhain.
I’m also throwing out Imbolc, as I don’t worship Brigit, and although a festival of lights seems like a good idea, it just has never resonated with me to work this Irish Sabbat, even with my Irish heritage. I think it would be more appropriate to work with The Morrigan, as I have worked with her successfully before.
Beltane is another Sabbat that really does not resonate with me. Although dancing around a maypole is fun, and I’ve been doing a rendition of this since I was a little girl around the washing line pole, it just doesn’t fit within my system. I tend to celebrate Halloween rather as I enjoy it more and it resonates with me more than Beltane.
I’ve obviously changed since my post on Sabbats, I’m taking bigger risks by listening to what resonates with me and I’m becoming more integrated with my own system, which as Lughnassadh suggests, is a sacrifice of old ways, and outmoded things that no longer serve me.
In keeping with my resolution to celebrate Valentines Day as a Sabbat I’m currently reading:
Aphrodisiacs and Love Magic- Pamela Allardice
I’m also starting to read:
Autumn Equinox- Ellen Dugan
and I’m still reading:
Exploring Spellcraft- Gerina Dunwich
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