Are you looking forward to Saturday’s Full Moon?
We are now in the waxing gibbous phase of Seanmháthair Gealach, Grandmother Moon, and the Full Moon arrives here in Vancouver on Saturday, May 21st at 2:15 PM (21:15 UTC).
There are many names for this moon — Hawthorn Moon, Full Flower Moon, Milk Moon and Full Corn Planting Moon — and all are closely associated with the cycles of the Earth and our ancestors’ connection to Her.
For instance, Hawthorn — also known as the May Flower — is used in Beltaine celebrations but many other plants are in Full Flower at this time, depending on your location in the world. If your ancestors were farmers, they may have referred to this Full Moon as Full Corn Planting Moon. If they raised livestock, they may have called it Milk Moon, inspired by the animals breastfeeding the young birthed in Spring.
Why is this Full Moon in Sagittarius special?
It is the first Full Moon after Beltaine (pronounced bee-yowl-tin-eh in Irish Gaelic), and those powerful Fire energies are active throughout May. At Beltaine — which means Mouth of Fire in Irish Gaelic — we look to balancing our Selves between the two fires, the Sun and the Moon, as we approach the Summer Solstice and to using the Fire Element for guiding us through personal transformation.
At the Full Moon, Father Sun and Grandmother Moon are directly opposite each other… once again, we are standing between the two fires, one of full light and one of reflected light.
And with this Full Moon in Sagittarius — a Fire sign — the Fire element is definitely exerting its influence. Sagittarius activates the Warrior Spirit in us, igniting a spiritual quest and a passion for change and exploration.
Full Moon Heart Ritual
At Beltaine, my Celtic ancestors celebrated their sexuality and sensuality, and their loving relationships, with courting rituals, dancing around the May Pole, bonfires and more. Consider ways to honour those traditions and aspects — the heart, love, relationships, sensuality — in your Full Moon ritual, such as this one for energizing the Heart Chakra to invite love to flourish in your life
❤️ Prepare for your ritual by etching a symbol of love onto a pink candle (e.g. a simple heart, a rune representing the heart, a sigil for love) and adding to your altar or Sacred Space. You may add other Beltaine elements for an even deeper experience (a ring of flowers, a hawthorn blossom, fresh blooms). If you don’t have a pink candle, white is fine.
❤️ Create an affirmation for love, unique to you and based on what you want to invite into your life (or continue in your life), and write it on a small piece of paper. On another small piece of paper, note what you want to release about love (or anything else!).
❤️ Start the ritual with a cleanse, such as smudging with sage, cleansing with a flower, or spraying the air around you with a cedar or floral spray.
❤️ Begin by calling in the Goddess, your Guides, animal allies, angels, ancestors and all others who support you. Call in the Four Directions and ask The South (the element of Fire) for special guidance and support.
I call to you, Spirit of the South — home of Passion, Fire, Creativity, Inspiration and Summer — seeking your wisdom and blessing today. Ignite my heart with your warmth and love and Spirit.
❤️ Light your candle, focusing your gaze on the flame. Breathe deeply and slowly, feeling any tensions move down to Mother Earth to be grounded and transformed.
❤️ As you continue to breathe deeply and relax, journey to your Sacred Space… a beautiful tree, a garden, a pond in the forest.
❤️ Drop down into your heart chakra and connect with its warmth and beauty. Imagine the breezes of summer are cleansing you as you continue to breathe deeply and slowly, releasing you from your human body — your clothes, skin, hair, organs, bones — until you are only your inner essence, until you are Pure Soul.
❤️ Focus on the candle flame, feeling its soft pink light enter your heart chakra, filling it with even more Love on each breath. Feel that Love, know that it is your’s, that you carry it with you always.
❤️ Ask your Guides what else you might need to know about Love. Share with them any questions you have. When you feel the journey is complete, thank all your Guides and Fire, the Spirit of the South, for their love and eternal support.
❤️ Feel the summer wind bring back your human form and notice how gently your body rests upon your soul…. how lovingly your body takes care of you, and how you nurture it. Thank your body, then come back to this physical reality.
If you choose to do some Soul Work in your ritual, leave your candle lit.
If not, proceed to the Fire Ceremony below.
Ceremony: Release to the Fire Element
Before you blow out your heart candle, review the invitations and releases you wrote at the beginning of the Heart Chakra ritual. Did you learn anything new from the ritual, or from the Soul Questions if you chose that activity? Rewrite if necessary.
Using the candle, or a small cauldron, offer the flame your words of release — that which no longer serves you — and allow the flame to send them to Spirit. Notice how long your paper takes to burn. Do the same with your positive affirmation paper — that which you want to invite or continue in your life. Watch how the papers burn. If they burn slowly, that may indicate there is work to be done to achieve your goal or to release; papers that burn quickly may indicate you are more than ready to let the thought go or to achieve your goal.
TIP: If you are working in Circle, this Fire Ceremony can be done in threes, to honour and reinforce the elements of the Triple Goddess – Maiden, Mother, Crone.
Use the smoke from the burning paper to anoint and ignite your chakras: your Root (1st) Chakra for Right Action and to feel safe and fearless, your Heart (4th) Chakra for Self-Love and Compassion and your Third Eye (6th) Chakra for Wisdom and Insight … or wherever you think you need the support.
A special thank you to Karen and Slí an Chroí for the Fire Ceremony inspiration.