“Ostara is the dawn of Spring, the entry way to Summer. At the Spring Equinox the Earth stands fresh and renewed. Let us all be like the Earth, let us cast away the darkness of Winter and embrace the wonder of green growing things. May we find delight in that which blooms around us and let us never forget our responsibility to this place we call home. This world is magickal place, may the power of our Lady and the beauty of Nature remind us of that everyday we draw breath.”
– Jason Mankey
A beautiful and blessed Ostara/Spring Equinox to you all! For many around the world, this is a time to celebrate! We do love our spring flowers, eggs and bunnies but we see many beautiful celebrations like the brightly colored powder tossing of Holi (The Festival of Colors) in India, the Nowruz New Year celebrations in Iran, the water-focused New Year's festival of Songkran in Thailand, the bonfires from many cultures and much more! The thread tying many of these celebrations together is one of gratitude and thankfulness for the Sun's return and bounty of the Earth.
At this special time, we welcome the return of the green, growing things of the Mother Earth and a strengthening of the light of the Sun. At the midpoint between the cold of winter and the warmth and fullness of Summer here in the Northern Hemisphere, this is a beautiful time to cleanse, refresh and plant your seeds of intention (or even just your literal seeds!). Today we offer you some ritual and recipes to rejoice in and share.
*Adapted from original by Walter L. Mora
This spell will help to renew your spiritual self as the Earth does every Spring.
You may wish to work the following materials or substitute as you see fit:
*a small black candle and a small white candle
*medium sized yellow or green candle – Egg shaped would be fitting and fun
*a spring wreath to fit around the candle or you can weave some ribbons in yellows, greens, lilacs, pinks (think spring flowers)
*your favorite essential oil - a scent that reminds you of Spring (florals like Jasmine, Rose or whatever you like best). Dilute this into a carrier oil as it will be used on the body.
*a black pen and a gold-ink sharpie pen
*a cauldron or fire-proof contain or dish
First, break the parchment paper in half. Use the black pen to write on one sheet and title the page "BE GONE." With the black pen, write all the habits, feelings, situations, etc. that you want to get rid off. Use the back if you need more space. Place this negative list under the candleholder or votive of the black candle.
Second, take a nice bath or shower and cleanse yourself of any negative vibrations. Visualize the water washing over your body and taking away the black cloudy grime that surrounds you to reveal a brilliant shimmering glow. After the bath or shower, anoint yourself with the essential oil blend and dress yourself in Spring colored or white comfy garments or skyclad (nude) if you prefer.
Third, return to your work space and now take the other sheet of parchment paper and with the gold pen title it "REBIRTH." With the gold pen, write all of those things you want to better in yourself, change for the positive, goals you desire to accomplish, etc. Make positive, active statements and void comments like I should, would, wish, hope or anything with negative connotations. This is your positive list so fill it with vibrant positive energy. When your list is complete, place the list under the candleholder or votive of the white candle.
Fourth, light the black and white candle and the incense. Take the incense holder and walk around your space three times clockwise. After replacing the incense, take the negative list from under the black candle and use its flame to set it afire and throw it in the cauldron etc. As you do this say:
“What once was will never be.
I'm making room for the new me.
Be gone, Be gone!
So mote it be!”
Fifth, after the negative list is entirely burned, take the positive list from under the white candle. Now here is where you need to be quick and steady. (If you feel you can't do this that is fine and work your way around it.) Set the positive list aflame with the white candle and immediately use the burning list to light your egg candl (or yellow, green, etc. candle) and throw the burning paper in to the fire-proof dish/container.
Sixth, after this invigorating event, look at your egg candle and say the following words:
Let me feel, let me see,
Now reborn in positivity.
As I hatch into Spring,
Let all good things now come in.
In perfect love and perfect trust,
With harm to none,
So mote it be!
Lastly, gaze at your candle for a moment and meditate if you wish. When your ready, take the cauldron outside and throw the ashes to the wind, making sure it doesn't come back into your house!. After that, make sure to snuff out the candles when appropriate or allow them to burn all the way down.
Go get something fresh and delicious to eat and begin to enjoy your renewed self!
Speaking of fresh and delicious this Spring Dandelion Salad is super-yummy and satisfying!
Spring Dandelion Salad by Linda Raedisch (from Llewellyn’s Sabbat’s Almanac)
For the Salad, you will need:
2 hardboiled eggs, sliced
¼ cup roasted slivered almonds (omit or replace if desired)
½ medium red onion, sliced very thin
½ lb fresh dandelion green (or blend with Spring mix if desired)
Fresh orange slices
½ cup dried cranberries
8oz goat cheese
For the dressing:
2Tbs diced red onion
¼ cup white wine vinegar
Juice of 1 orange
Pinch of salt
Pinch of cracked black pepper (or to taste)
1 ½ cup extra virgin olive oil
For the salad, blend all ingredients except goat cheese in a large bowl.
For the dressing, place onions in vinegar and let soak for five minutes. Add all other dressing ingredients, except for oil and whisk until well combined. Then, while still whisking, slowly drizzle oil into bowl with salad ingredients.
Combine dressing and salad thoroughly (or as desired) until salad is well coated then crumble goat cheese on top. Enjoy!
Spring Blessings Potpourri
A small cauldron/bowl filled with homemade potpourri can be used as a fragrant altar (or table) decoration, burned (outdoors) as an offering or after a Sabbat celebration, steamed on the stove as a simmering incense, or wrapped in decorative paper and ribbons and given as a gift!
3 drops rose oil, optional
1/8 cup Rosemary, fresh or dried
1/4 cup Lavender flowers
1/4 cup Rose petals
1/8 cup Lemon peel, fresh or dried
Mix the rose oil with the remaining ingredients. Stir the potpourri well and then store in a tightly covered ceramic or glass container. (You can replace any of the above flowers with what is available to you if you desire. Calendula, crocus, borage, daphne, cherry blossom, etc).
**Easter Bonus: You can find a wonderful recipe for natural egg dying here (you may need to scroll down a bit): http://moonriseherbs.com/resources/recipes.html
**Art Credit: Josephine Wall