Ritual – Féile na Shamhna 2015

The 2015 Samhain ritual conducted by Five Rivers Protogrove, ADF.

Féile na Shamhna

(Ayluh na How-na)

Gathering

A bell is tolled three times calling the folk to the nemeton.

GO/SD/GPThe tribe is called together for Fhéile na Shamhna (Ayluh na How-na)

Let us gather at the center.

 Inviting the Patron:

 GO/SD/GPManannan Mac Lir old and deep we invite you to join us this day as our tribe gathers to celebrate Lá Lúnasa (Law Loonuhsuh.) We offer you libations after your journey.

 GO/SD/GP: makes an offering and says: Manannan Mac Lir, accepting this offering.

 All: Manannan Mac Lir, accepting this offering.

 

 Honoring the Local Land Goddesses

Druid 2: We honor the Five Rivers, the goddesses of the land; Potomac, Patapsco, Susquehanna, Gunpowder, and Patuxent.  Givers of life that flow from the mountains and form estuaries of the Chesapeake.  

We honor you and make this offering to you in gratitude for your waters that nourish this land.

Druid 2: makes an offering and says: Mighty goddesses of the land accept this offering.

 All: Mighty goddesses of the land accept this offering.

Host Offering

GO/SD/GP: We now make an offering to Odin. The All-Father, lord of this hearth and land. We are gracious for the hospitality shown to us and return a gift with a gift.

GO/SD/GP: makes an offering and says: Odin, accepting this gift.

All: Odin accept this gift.

Statement of Purpose

DRUID 1/2: I have news for you; the stag bells, winter snows, summer has gone.  Wind high and cold, the sun low, short its course, the sea running high.  Deep red the bracken, its shape is lost; the wild goose has raised its accustomed cry.  Cold has seized the birds’ wings; season of ice, this is my news.

Winter has come and it is the end of the annual cycle of the seasons and start of the new.   The veil is thin and the ancestors call to us for recognition.  Today we honor the ancestors of our blood, the loved ones we have lost and look forward to the coming year.

 

Opening Prayer

ALL:

 By the land beneath us

By the sea surrounding us

By the sky above us

We come unto the gods and ungods.

 May they light our way and

Bless our days,

 

 Centering Meditation

A guide is selected to lead this guided meditation. Going through it with a calm voice and steady voice.

GUIDE: Close your eyes clear your mind and focus on your breathing. Breathe in and out slowly visualizing the spiral of the cosmos around you.

GUIDE: We are at the center of An Thríbhís Mhór.                 ah-heeveesh-vohr

GUIDE: Inhale and as you exhale visualize your feet firmly planted on the earth.

GUIDE: We stand firmly upon the Sacred Land.

GUIDE: Inhale again and as you exhale imagine you are surrounded by the great calm ocean.

GUIDE: The Eternal Sea always surrounds us.

GUIDE: Inhale and exhale seeing the great blue expanse above you.

GUIDE: The Endless Sky spreads itself above us.

GUIDE: Inhale while visualizing the great spiral around you, with you at its center.

GUIDE: We are at the center of An Thríbhís Mhór. 

GUIDE: And breath, open your eyes when ready.

 

Establishing the Sacred Grove

Sacred Hearth Fire

DRUID 1:
I make sacred the fire,
The first fire born of lightning
from which all fires are lit.
The hearth fire which warms our homes
and binds our people.
I stand in the grove at the center of the realms,

ALL:
Let the flame be the hearth fire,
Lets the water be the Well of Knowledge
Let the tree be the bile,                           
(bill-uh)
I stand in the grove at the center of the realms,

DRUID 1: puts butter on the fire, then says:

I light the sacred fire of inspiration.  Sacred fire, burn within us.

Well of Segais

DRUID 1 says:

I make sacred the well,
From which the five rivers flow,
Salmon swimming, hazels hanging high.
Bubbling brightly Segais
(shay-gish), source of wisdom,                   
I stand in the grove at the center of the realms,

ALL:
Let the flame be the hearth fire,
Lets the water be the Well of Knowledge
Let the tree be the bile,                           
(bill-uh)
I stand in the grove at the center of the realms,

DRUID 1: dips the apple branch into the well then says:

In the depths flow the waters of wisdom. Sacred waters, flow within us.

World Tree

DRUID 1 says:

I make sacred the branch/tree,
Towering high, hanging heavy with hazel,
Spanning and connecting the Three Realms,
The mighty bile of the grove,

I stand in the grove at the center of the realms,

ALL:
Let the flame be the hearth fire,
Lets the water be the Well of Knowledge
Let the tree be the bile,                           
(bill-uh)
I stand in the grove at the center of the realms,

DRUID 1: dresses (takes water from well and pours it or rubs it on the tree) the bile, then says:

From the depths to the heights spans the world tree. Sacred tree, grow within us.

DRUID 1: raises arms

DRUID 1: With the Flame of the Hearth, the Well of Knowledge, and the Sacred Bile the grove is erected and hallowed.

Parting the Mists

DRUID 1: prepares an offering for the gatekeeper and says:

DRUID 1: says: We honor Donn, the first Ancestor of Ireland and Lord of the Dead we ask that you part the mists and allow the ancestors to travel from  

DRUID 1: makes an offering and says: Donn, accept our offerings and gratitude as you part the mists.

DRUID 1: Let the mists be parted!!

ALL: Let the mists be parted.

Inviting the Gods and Ungods

An Sinsear  (en shen-shoor)

DRUID 2: Mighty dead, you who have come before,
Ancestors of our blood,  Heros of our people
We offer you this gift with love and loyalty and invite you to witness this rite.

DRUID 2: makes an offering and says: Ancestors, accept this offering.

 ALL: Ancestors, accept this offering.

 Aos Sí  (ees-shee)

DRUID 2: Great nature spirits, you who frolic in the wild world,
Spirits of this place,
We offer you this gift in friendship and invite you to witness this rite.
(place offering on the ground)

Spirits of family and the people that came to this land from faraway lands.
We offer you this gift in friendship and invite you to witness this rite.
(place offering near the home)

DRUID 2: makes an offering and says: Aos Sí (ees-shee) , accept this offering.

 ALL: Aos Sí (ees-shee) , accept this offering.

Gods of the Tribe

DRUID 2: Great gods, you who are mightiest in all things,
Deities of our faith,
We offer you this gift with reverence and honor and invite you to witness this rite.

DRUID 2: makes an offering and says: Gods and goddesses accept this offering.

 ALL: Gods and goddesses accept this offering.

Key Offering

DRUID 1:  Mighty ancestors today we honor you and the deeds you have done.
Ancestors of our blood, we honor you for you are the foundation of our family trees, our personal trees of life.

Ancestors of our nation, we thank you for the sacrifices you made and risks you took to bring about this nation in which we are grateful to reside.  

Ancestors of these lands, we are grateful that you are also of my blood and will work to honor you in our treatment of the land.

Said Amergin to Athairne when he attempted to end his visit at the start of winter: “In the black season of deep winter as storm of waves is roused along the expanse of the world.  Sad are the birds of every meadow plain, except the ravens that feed on crimson blood, at the clamour of harsh winter; rough black, dark, smokey. Dogs are vicious in cracking bones; the iron pot is put on the fire after the dark black day.”

In honor of you mighty ancestors, we contemplate the meaning of the season, the end of the Summer and the coming of the coldest months. A time when the earth sleeps and appears to die, remembering to consider the impact this season had on you, ancestors, a time to store away the harvests, bring in the animals, slaughtering those that are old for the winter meat and preserving more food for the breeding stock. A time of cold and darkness and isolation. We are to be thankful for time in which we live, the time of heaters, packaged foods and electricity.

 

DRUID 1: makes holds up the offering and says Ancestors!! Accept this offering with love and respect.  

ALL: Ancestors!! Accept this offering with love and respect.  

The Fríth

SEER: Ritually washes their hands then forms the left hand into a tube, blows through the tube then says:

I am going within
To the doorstep of the sí
in the name of Finn
Stronger in sight then all.

The augury made by Finn to his men,
That Bride blew her palm,
Message of truth without a message of falsehood
That I myself shall see
The semblance, joyous and mild
Of all that is hidden to me

Good spirits and gods of my people,
Give me the sight to see all I need,
With vision that shall never fail, before me,
That shall never quench nor dim.

Tell me what I need.

SEER: then takes the omen, interprets it, and records it.

Receiving the blessings of the Gods and Ungods

DRUID 2: raises the blessing plate/cup high and says:

Tuatha de Danaan (tooah-de-danyan), Aos Sí , (ees she) and An Sinsear  (en shen-shoor), we have praised you and made offerings and now a gift calls for a gift. We pray to you and ask that you give us your blessings.  Make sacred these apples and infuse them with your vitality, strength and inspiration.

Lo, the blessings of the Gods and Ungods are upon us.

DRUID 2: Slices and eats the blessed apple and passes it around.

Thanking the Gods and Ungods and Closing the Mists

DRUID 1: We have given gifts to the gods and ungods and received gifts in return. Take these blessings into the world and use these them to live fruitfully and with honor.   At this time we have come to the closing of this ritual and will give thanks to those who have come to aid us.

DRUID 2: Tuatha de Danaan, gods of our tribe, we thank you for your presence and blessings.  

 All: Hail the gods.

DRUID 2: Aos Sí, these are your lands and here you shall remain.  We thank you for attending and accepting our offerings of peace and respect.    

 All: Hail the spirits.

DRUID 2: Mighty Dead, thank you for attending and accepting our gifts.  Pass back through the mists and return to the Otherworld.

 All: Hail the mighty dead.

DRUID 1: Donn, we thank you for parting the mists.  We ask that you allow the mists to fall as our ancestors pass back into your realm.    

DRUID 1: Let the mists return and the veil be whole. Hail Donn.

ALL: Hail Donn!

DRUID 2: Mighty Rivers, these are your lands and here you shall remain.  We thank you for attending and accepting my offerings of peace and respect.

 ALL: Hail the goddesses.

DRUID 1: Manannan, as we prepare to end this ritual, we again give you thanks for the wisdom to bring to our tribe. Hail Manannan.

 ALL: Hail Manannan.  

Taking down the Sacred Grove

DRUID 1: And now the Sacred Grove must be taken down. We honor the Hearth Fire and restore it to flame.  We honor the Well of Segais and restore it to water. We honor the bile and restore it to branch.  ALL is as it was and the Sacred Grove is dismantled. The ritual is ended.

 May love and laughter light your days,

and warm your heart and home.

May good and faithful friends be yours,

wherever you may roam.

May peace and plenty bless your world

with joy that long endures.

May all life’s passing seasons

bring the best to you and yours!

ALL: Biodh Se!    (bee-shay)

Items List:

Bell or gong for calling the folk to the temple space.

Juniper bundle for saining the attendees.

Representations of the Hearth Fire, Well of Wisdom and Bile.

Bowl with fresh water and ogham staves for the seer.

Butter for the consecration of the fire

Apple Branch for consecration of the well

Cup for water from the Well of Wisdom to consecrate the tree.

Offerings to the gods and ungods

Apples for the blessings on the folk.

Basket or bowl to collect offerings during indoor rituals.

 

Local River Goddesses Corn meal
Manannan Mac Lir Alcohol, water grasses, yellow flower
Mighty Dead Food/bread
Spirits of Place honey/sage smoke
Tuatha de Danaan Alcohol
Land Goddesses Harvest Items
The folk Apples

 

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