This is is a full moon ritual for the February Snow Moon; also the second supermoon in 2019. Last month’s supermoon was the talk of the town as it occurred simultaneously with a total lunar eclipse, which turned that moon a eerie shade of crimson red. The Snow Moon won’t have the same level of excitement surrounding it, but it will be spectacular in it’s own right as it will be the largest supermoon of 2019; ironically the next supermoon comes in March. On February 19th, the moon will be 100% full at 8:53 AM (MST), so you may wish to perform this ritual the evening before.
Instructional steps are shown in < > these are not spoken aloud
You’ll need the following items:
Quarter Candles (yellow, red, blue, green)
Large White Goddess Candle – I prefer a three wick candle to symbolize the triple Goddess
Paper and pencil for each participant
Fire pit or cauldron suitable for safely burning small objects and paper
<A call to action for the participants to stop talking, gather, and prepare to begin the ritual>
A circle gathers all around, high above and on the ground, a sacred sphere between the worlds, I do cast!
Calling the Quarters
Welcome great spirits of East – the source of the nurturing gardens of hospitality, where we go to consider our purpose on this earth and how that purpose serves others – also the direction of fertility, of balance, of serving others and at the same time maintaining a healthy balance to tend to our own well being <light yellow candle>
Welcome great spirits of South – the source of the gardens of inspiration, creativity, and passion of the heart – here we find the healing power of music, of poetry, the Celtic spirit, and the discovery of direction that will ultimately connect us to both the power of healing and of transformation. <light red candle>
Welcome great spirits of West – the source of beingness and wisdom and knowledge – here we find that knowledge is more than academics and wisdom is more than facts through quiet listening and contemplative understanding <light blue candle>
Welcome great spirits of North – the source of bravery and the soul of the warrior – here we face the tests of existence and learn the importance of facing our greatest fears, discipline, refinement, and honor <light green candle>
Great Goddess – We call out to the highest mountaintops and the deepest rivers; we praise your name on the banks of the mighty rivers and along the edges of the densest forests; your deeds and words are known in the highlands and throughout the valleys below. Praises to all the gifts provided and the protections you’ve given us! <light Goddess candle>
We must never forget the words and music of our ancestors – please enjoy this Ancient Celtic Folk Song (Sung In Gaelic)
The full snow moon name is obvious as most northern lands are celebrating while the grounds are still white and frozen. February has always been a month of heavy snow in many areas, dating back for thousands of years. Native Americans also deemed this full moon as the Hunger Moon, Storm Moon, Famine Moon, and the Bony Moon; all were closely tied to the harsh weather and lack of game during the month. Although many Native American tribes gave distinct names to the full moon, the most well known come from the Algonquin tribes who lived in the area of New England and westward to Lake Superior. The Algonquin tribes had perhaps the greatest effect on the early European settlers in America, and the settlers adopted the Native American habit of naming the full moons.
Full moons have always brought about changes; some great, but usually most were simple changes brought about by people who wanted to better themselves. There is an abundance of energy during the full moon; energy some can capture and use to enhance in their workings. Others with an undeveloped understanding of the moon energy are likely to be agitated and uncertain as to what they should do. Offer them a comforting word and direction, when you can, so that they too might finally find their truest self and tap into this amazing lunar energy field.
Remembering the Harsh Lessons of Winter
As winter is coming to a close, it is a fitting time to look back at the months of cold and snow; not in misery or unhappiness, but to glean knowledge from the changing season and cold. Nature provides is with the means to live. We cut the dead trees for fuel in our hearths; branches, stone and soil for building our houses; game and forage plants provide us with sustenance, and rivers and ponds with water for our crops, our herds, and our families. Most people go to ground in the winter months; relying on the stores of food and wood saved up during the heat of the summer. Much of life seems to come to a halt as the nights grow longer and the winds more raw and harsh. And yet it’s during this seemingly inhospitable period of each year, that magic is happening all around us, yet few of us seem to notice.
We shy away from the snow and ice for many reasons, but fail to remember that without melting snow, we’d likely not enjoy fresh running rivers in the spring. We shiver just thinking about the barren lands under the spell of the frozen giants of the north, but fail to remember that the extreme cold weather kills soil borne bacteria and viruses in our fields, preventing a poor or non-existent crop next season. Heavy accumulation causes the weak dry branches of the lofty trees to break off and fall to the earth; providing us with dry wood throughout the winter, should our stores grow thin.
Our bodies are strengthened as we deal with the cold and our immune systems improve as we breathe in the crisp clean winter air. We sleep better and spend more time actually speaking with one another when it’s frigid outside. Winter can be considered the season for togetherness for so many reasons other than celebrating Yule and Imbolc. All happenings are happening for a distinct reason and yet most of us fail to see winter as anything other than a momentary pause in our regular outdoor activities.
Our lesson tonight is a simple one – take pause and think about how the great circle of life interacts with each our our lives; regardless of the season, regardless of what interactions we encounter, and regardless of status or position in life. Open your eyes to the magick and wisdom found in a frozen river or a barren cornfield. Keep those thoughts with you as you travel on the great journey of living and be forever thankful that the Goddess is providing for you throughout the year; even in the moments when you don’t realize it.
The full moon offers us the opportunity to reflect and cleanse ourselves of negative energy and excess baggage we carry around for no apparent reason. There are no subjects taboo nor are there any too large to release. Often times we are led to believe that size or scale matters more than they actually do. What matters is intent, commitment, and a willingness to deal with the fallout of personal cleansing. Sometimes those cords we cut tonight will try to reattach themselves and continue to feed on our energies. We must be alert and aware that releasing also likely means creating or maintaining a posture of defense against the negative trying to once again infiltrate our clean spaces.
All things are washed away in the cleansing flames; we watch as the past is consumed and that which is old and no longer valid in our lives becomes nothing more than ash and smoke. By burning the remnants of things useless and without value, we free ourselves to find new and positive things to fill those empty spaces.
<Offer each person paper/pencil to write things down>
Each of you may approach the fire when you are ready to cast the unwanted from your life and create an open space to fill with things that have meaning. As you burn each item, state the following, “I give up freely that which is no longer serving me”
<Once everyone has burned their items, have the group join hands and say the following>
We gather tonight by the light of this Snow Moon; we feel the chill of winter on our faces but we also see the first signs that spring is near. The darkness is heavy and deep across the land, yet we refuse to surrender to the winter; instead we celebrate the season now that we see the benefits winter provides us with. Rejoice! for our bodies and minds are now cleansed with the great fires of the South carrying the negative away. May the next turn of the Wheel bring us love and compassion, abundance and prosperity, fertility and life – As the moon above, so the earth below. So Mote it Be!
Cakes & Ale
Depending on the weather and the make-up of your group, you may choose to have a few libations and food at this time. Talk, share stories, and get to know your fellow citizens of the earth.
Closing the circle
Spirits of the Earthly realm, thank you for your presence in our circle this night; thank you for testing us to ensure we are prepared to meet any challenges we may face. May we be blessed with the abundance from your belly and give gratitude for all your great provisions. We bid you farewell. <extinguish green candle>
Spirits of Watery realm, thank you for your presence in our circle this night; thank you for providing us with the wisdom necessary to coax crops from the soil, to gather seed and forage, to milk and plant, and harvest. May we be blessed with the ability to flow with life’s currents. We bid you farewell. <extinguish blue candle>
Spirits of the Fiery realm, thank you for your presence in our circle this night; thank you for planting the seeds of creativity inside of us, providing a spark to drive our innovation, and the ability to bring forth the beauty of life. May we be blessed with the ability to see your light in any darkness. We bid you farewell. <extinguish red candle>
Spirits of the Airy realm, thank you for your presence in our circle this night; thank you for opening our minds so that we may open our hearts and have compassion for our fellow man and woman. May we be blessed with the ability to see something positive in every vision. We bid you farewell. <extinguish yellow candle>
Great Goddess, we thank you for your wisdom and love. Thank you for the opportunity to share space with our brothers and sisters. Thanks you for making us aware that all things, even those which seem harsh and unworthy , are there to provide us with infinite wisdom if we open our eyes to it. Thank you for sharing this night with us in our sacred space. <extinguish Goddess candle>
This circle is now open!