Festival of Beltane

A water-colour of Spring I painted

I remember clearly back in my junior school years the May Day celebrations. The First day of May was made more special because this was the day I started out on my Earth Journey this time around.  

Learning to dance around the Maypole was part of our village school tradition.. We would learn the various dances, weaving in and out to plat the brightly coloured ribbons in spiders webs and close weave patterns .Girl and Boy alternatively skipping around in and over each other to the lively Maypole music.

This is the beautiful Village I still call home even though I now no longer live there

  

 

The May Queen represents the ‘Maiden’ aspect the Feminine, beauty and youth. Living as I do now in Robin Hood country. One of the best known maids is Maid Marian. which could be denoted as manifestation of the Maiden Goddess of the Greenwood..  I am also reminded of the Green Man. and all he represents. 

The Maypole is the symbol of returning life connecting to living matter of Earth, the colourful ribbons and dances which weave in a spiral represent the eternal spirals of energy which come from the Sun..As we danced around the pole we would then unwind reversing the dance symbolising the returning of energy to the Universe in a never ending cycle or loop.. Of course back then as children we had no idea of its origins we just danced and enjoyed the lively music  and had no concept of its Pagan history. 

Once upon a time Maypoles stood upon most village greens but the Roundheads and Reformation put a stop to anything that bore a mark of Paganism or Popery.

I wasn’t until Charles II that the Maypole was reinstated and the tradition was taken up again on village greens..

May Day is the Ancient festival of Beltane. Beltane was the start of Summer and on the eve of May 1st Bonfires would be lit to herald in the return of fertility to the land. Fires meaning Life and Transformation,

One tradition was that young men and women would leap over the flames of the fires to get husbands and wives. Married women would leap to help them be more fertile and conceive and those who just wanted good luck would also jump. 

It was also the practice to drive cattle between two bonfires which was to help ensure a good milk yield ..In our present day lots of our traditions are being lost and we have lost much respect for Nature. In our village as children the community spirit held us all together we knew each other and would go out of our way to help a neighbour . A post I did previously  on this subject can be found here.

Many have lost touch with Nature,forgetting names of wild flowers and herbs, and natural healing properties that natures larder holds. 

Those ancient rituals not only served to honour the gifts Nature freely offered, but they also served in lifting the community up to a higher level of consciousness.Bringing Unity and Oneness as they each pulled together helping one another. 

The rites of passage are honoured throughout many cultures and our Ancient indigenous brothers and sisters knew that to honour our Earth Mother by living in balance within her seasons also meant that there would be a better chance for all to succeed and prosper. Some thing I think many have forgotten how to do today..  For many see Nature without a soul as science seems to be meddling within its boundaries which are having a knock on effect to how Nature itself is now reacting.. 

We are witnessing more storms, more unseasonal weather patterns, and I just hope that we wake up soon to the damage we are doing to our beloved Mother that has held us in her eternal arms for so long..We forget the power nature holds until we are faced with her floods, winds and storms.

Wishing you all a Happy Month of May

Blessings

 Sue 

    

 

Happy May Day~ to all.

Today I will hopefully have travelled to the lovely little town of Inverary as we will be mid way through our vacation in this beautiful setting of Scotland.

Above is the Castle on our list to visit today May Day, It is Kilchurn Castle where the Clan of Campbells held their ancient seats.  If you click Kilchurn Castle link it will take you to a short video and give you and idea of the surrounding beauty that Scotland has to offer.

 Today is also the day I entered this Earth Journey so for me May Day is of special importance.. If you would like to learn more about the origins of May Day, and the history behind it you can do so on a previous May Day Post..  HERE. 

These posts are scheduled and I hope you are enjoying the addition of the Story of the Vision Quest while I am on my break.. Comments will be moderated upon my return..

In the mean time take care of yourselves and see you all very soon.

Blessings Sue

 

Another Year~ Childhood Memories

May is upon us already.. and with it another year for me draws to its maypole_thumbcompletion.. As I mark another year to my calendar today. The Month of May begins for me with a Celebration of memories.. May is the time when blossoms bloom, and bluebells flower.

I look back within my mind at my childhood, my youth and now my autumn years.. As I see the many changes which unfolds within a life time..I reflect today the many colours which have contributed to my life.. And like the Maypole ribbons each one woven in their own unique colours as they streak through my mind.. Some clear, while others have blown away in the passing of time.

May brings back memories of many birthdays and as I sit and pen this post of memories, I see myself aged 7 dancing the May-Pole in my Village of Stoney Middleton with one of the rare new dresses I would have to wear.. As my Aunt would buy us all a new Easter outfits just once a year. ( as my parents were not so well off ), which often would be miles too big.But I remember well this day in May as I danced with glee, for my dress in poker-dots of blue velvet on white net, like a ballerinas gown was my pride and joy.. I was a princess that day ~I remember lining up in the church vestry waiting to skip out onto the Nook in a line on cue to music, as we took our positions and picked up our ribbons from the boys who stood in the middle keeping the pole sturdy. ~ It mattered not that day that my dance partner a boy, who when we danced over and under went the wrong way and we all got entangled as we skipped our way around the central circle Pole. And our teacher came to our aid as we untangled ourselves..

We would as children gather our mothers bluebells from the valley and later it would be Lilies of the Valley.I can still smell their perfume as I see the images within my minds eye as we would tie them into the small circles of Posies .

My brother would get into trouble for climbing trees, to look into birds nests. But then we all climbed and swung on trees making rope ladders and swings and dens in the wood. We skipped over the meadows picking the many large Moon Penny Daisies and Buttercups and jumped the local brook. I remember being chased off private land near our local small private Middleton Hall by their Gardener..The same Hall that held garden parties for the village on Wakes week, when the Wells were Dressed with the Wells Dressings , with WI stalls of home made cakes and jams. The Tombola stall, and the Lucky Dip..And roll a penny.. Tug of War completions in fancy dress.. Morris Dancing’s, And how All the villages pulled together..

And we would help the local Farmer at harvest time with haymaking, taking two or three of us at a time to drag the square bales of hay into piles for the tractor to collect..

Dad would catch wild rabbits and we would get Rabbit stew on the menu quite regular.. Meat was expensive but we had Pheasants and partridges too, Living near to Chatsworth House my Dad knew someone who when they had their game shoots, the birds which were too badly shot damaged would go cheap.. I remember well sat around the table and Dad saying ‘chew well’, as we all spat out the led shot pellets as they clanked on our plates..

I often find some of those early memories are clearer in my mind than that which I did yesterday…..

May is a special month of the Year.. And just wanted to share a few childhood Memories .. As I Look back today.

Me-Age-5_thumb19

Sue Dreamwalker

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