Spheres Of Light

Yule

Ritual written* and led by Danny McGaw
(June 2005)




ENTERING THE RITUAL CIRCLE FROM THE SOUTH.

CHANT: WE ARE ONE WITH THE INFINITE SUN FOREVER AND EVER

EAST
POWERS OF THE EAST, ELEMENT OF AIR, WE CALL YOU TO THIS PLACE, TO JOIN US, IN OUR SOLSTICE CELEBRATION. GRANT YOUR BLESSING TO OUR VOICES, TO OUR THOUGHTS AND TO THE SOUNDS OF OUR SINGING. HELP US TO CALL FORTH THE NEW LIGHT. SO MOTE IT BE.

NORTH
POWERS OF THE NORTH, ELEMENT OF FIRE, WE CALL YOU TO THIS PLACE, TO JOIN US, IN OUR SOLSTICE CELEBRATION. LET YOUR PASSION BURN BRIGHTLY IN OUR HEARTS. HELP US TO CALL FORTH THE NEW LIGHT. SO MOTE IT BE

WEST
POWERS OF THE WEST, ELEMENT OF WATER, WE CALL YOU TO THIS PLACE TO JOIN US IN OUR SOLSTICE CELEBRATION. LET YOUR COMPASSION TEACH US WE ARE ALL PART OF ONE ANOTHER, AND ALL DEPEND ON THE LIGHT. HELP US TO CALL FORTH THE NEW LIGHT. SO MOTE IT BE

SOUTH
POWERS OF THE SOUTH, ELEMENT OF EARTH, WE CALL YOU TO THIS PLACE, TO JOIN US IN OUR SOLSTICE CELEBRATION. LET YOUR WISDOM TEACH US HOPE IN THE TIME OF DARKNESS. HELP US TO CALL FORTH THE NEW LIGHT. SO MOTE IT BE.

LEADER
POWERS OF THE CENTER, PLACE OF SPIRIT THAT PERVADES ALL, THE PLACE OF THE GODDESS AND THE GOD, OF ALL THAT FIRST SET IN PLACE THE TURNING WHEEL OF THE YEAR. WE CALL YOU TO THIS PLACE TO JOIN WITH US IN OUR SOLSTICE CELEBRATION. GRANT US NEW LIGHT. HELP US TO CALL FORTH THE LIGHT. BLESSED BE.

THE ANCIENT PEOPLE DID NOT TAKE THE RETURN OF LIGHT FOR GRANTED. THEY NEVER FORGOT HOW OUR VERY LIVES DEPEND ON ITS RETURN. THEY BELIEVED THE PEOPLE MUST HELP THE LIGHT TO BE REBORN, BY HONORING THIS TIME OF DARKNESS. THE PEOPLE WERE TO WATCH AND WAIT, HOLDING HOPE LIKE A BEACON IN THEIR HEARTS. WHILE THE PEOPLE WAITED, THEY PRAYED AND FEASTED. THEY DECORATED THEIR HOMES SO THAT THE RETURNING LIGHT WOULD FIND WELCOME AND BEAUTY IN THE NEW YEAR. THEY EXCHANGED GIFTS WITH ONE ANOTHER IN HONOR OF THE LIFE-GIVING GIFT OF THE INCREASING LIGHT. AND WHILE THEY WAITED THEY TOLD STORIES. STORIES TO EXPLAIN THE LIGHT'S COMING AND GOING.

TONIGHT WE WILL TELL ONE STORY OF HOW THE LIGHT MAKES RICH OUR LIVES. WE WILL TELL A STORY OF THE TURNING WHEEL OF THE YEAR AND HOW THE LIGHT WILL BE REBORN.


THE CRONE:
 I AM THE CRONE, THE OLD ONE WHO RULES THE TIME OF WINTER. I HAVE MANY NAMES; HECATE, CERRIDWEN, SPIDER GRANDMOTHER - I AM MIDWIFE OF LIFE AND OF DEATH, THE CHANGER, SHE WHO STANDS AT THE CROSSROADS. I AM THE KEEPER OF THE STORIES. THIS NIGHT WE WILL TELL A STORY OF THE SUN GOD, A STORY OF LIFE, DEATH, AND REBIRTH! LISTEN!(SOUND OF RATTLES OR BELLS)

EAST GUARDIAN:
I AM THE EAST, THE PLACE OF DAWN, RULED BY THE ELEMENT OF AIR. I AM THE BREATH OF LIFE, GIVER OF THOUGHT, SPEECH AND SONG. I WATCH OVER ALL THE WINGED ONES. I AM THE SEASON OF SPRING, THE SEASON OF BIRTH AND NEW CREATION.

CAN YOU REMEMBER THE SPRING? LIFE SURGED FORTH IN BUDS AND SPROUTS. THE TREES DRESS THEIR BRANCHES IN NEW LEAVES AS THE SAP RISES TO ROUSE THEM FROM SLEEP. THE BIRDS RETURNED FROM THE REALMS OF THE NORTH TO RAISE THEIR CHILDREN. NEW LIFE COMES FORTH AND MULTIPLIES. THE EARTH LEANS TOWARDS THE SUN AS SHE GREENS AND BLOSSOMS. EACH DAY THE YOUNG SUN RISES IN THE EAST AND EACH DAY GROWS STRONGER. EACH DAY THE TIME OF LIGHT LASTS LONGER. DID YOU THINK IT WOULD LAST FOREVER? THE WHEEL TURNS! (SOUND OF RATTLES OR BELLS)

NORTH GUARDIAN:
I AM THE NORTH, THE PLACE OF MIDDAY, RULED BY THE ELEMENT OF FIRE. I AM THE PASSION AND LAUGHTER OF LIFE. GUARDIAN OF ALL THAT WALKS AND CRAWLS ON THE EARTH. I HOLD THE GIFT OF FERTILE EARTH FROM WHICH YOUR CROPS COME FORTH. I AM THE BLESSING OF CHILDREN, THE KEEPER OF TRUTH AND INNOCENCE. I AM THE SEASON OF SUMMER.

CAN YOU REMEMBER THE SUMMER? THE FRUIT WAS SET UPON THE VINES AND THE BRANCHES OF THE TREES. THE HERDS FATTEN ON THE THICK GRASS OF THE UPPER PASTURES. YOUNG ANIMALS SCAMPER AND PLAY UNDER THE WATCHFUL EYES OF THE OLDER ANIMALS. THE YOUNG BIRDS LEARN TO FLY. YOUR OWN CHILDREN TAKE SHADE UNDER THE GLORIOUS LEAF CANOPY OF THE TREES. THE EARTH LEANS NEAREST THE SUN, RADIANT IN HER BEAUTY. THE SUN, STRONG AND HOT, IS AT THE PEAK OF HIS POWER. AND THE LIGHT EXCEEDS THE DARKNESS. DID YOU THINK IT WOULD LAST FOREVER? THE WHEEL TURNS! (SOUNDS OF RATTLES OR BELLS)

WEST GUARDIAN:
I AM THE WEST, PLACE OF DUSK, RULED BY THE ELEMENT OF WATER. I AM THE KEEPER OF LIFE-GIVING WATER, FROM THE OCEANS DEPTHS TO THE WATERS OF THE WOMB THAT ROCKED YOU BEFORE YOUR BIRTH. I AM THE SWEET RAIN SATISFYING THE THIRSTY EARTH AND KEEPER OF ALL THAT SWIMS AND LIVES IN WATER. I AM THE PLACE OF ALL THAT LIES BELOW THE SURFACE, OF INTUITION AND DREAMS. AND I AM THE SEASON OF AUTUMN AND THE TIME OF HARVEST. CAN YOU REMEMBER THE AUTUMN?

DO YOU REMEMBER THE BACK BREAKING LABOR OF HARVESTING THE GRAINS AND FRUITS AND VEGETABLES. THE VINES AND TREES WERE HEAVY WITH THEIR BOUNTY. NOW THE YOUNG ANIMALS TAKE THEIR PLACES BESIDE THE ELDERS AND BEGIN THE GREAT MIGRATIONS TO THE REALMS OF THE NORTH AND THE PASTURES OF THE LOWLAND.

THE TREES TRANSFORM FROM DEEP GREEN INTO GLORIOUS GOLD, ORANGE AND RED, - THEIR TRUE COLORS SHINE FORTH BEFORE THEY DROP THEIR FINERY, LEAF BY LEAF TO THE GROUND. YOUR OWN CHILDREN MUST BE DRESSED AGAINST THE MORNING AND EVENING CHILL AND YOU LABOR TO MAKE READY FOR THE COMING DARKNESS. THE EARTH STANDS APART FROM THE SUN WHO GROWS COOLER AND THE LIGHT BEGINS TO DIE. DID YOU THINK IT WOULD LAST FOREVER? THE WHEEL TURNS! (SOUNDS OF BELLS AND RATTLES)

SOUTH GUARDIAN:
I AM THE SOUTH, THE PLACE OF MIDNIGHT, RULED BY THE ELEMENT OF EARTH. I AM THE PLACE OF THE ANCESTORS AND ANCIENT WISDOM, OF ALL THAT HAS WALKED THE WHEEL THROUGH MILLENNIA AND KNOWS THE WAY. I RULE THE TIME OF WINTER.

NOW THE TIME OF DARKNESS IS UPON US- A TIME OF COLD AND SCARCITY WHEN THE SOUTHERN-MOST EARTH LEANS FARTHEST FROM THE SUN. NOW THE SUN GIVES BRIEF LIGHT AND LITTLE WARMTH. THE LIFE THAT WAS LIES SHATTERED AND STILL - RETREATED LIKE REFUGEES IN THE MIGRATION OF HERDS, THE FLIGHT OF THE FLOCKS. THE TREES STAND STRIPPED AND NAKED, THEIR ONCE GLORIOUS LEAVES AND FRUITS LIE ROTTING AT THEIR FEET. IN THE TIME OF SUFFERING AND HARDSHIP YOU LEARN WHAT IS ESSENTIAL. IN THE TIME, OF COLD AND DARK, DEATH SEEMS TO TRIUMPH. EVEN THE GOD DIES!

THE SOUTH GUARDIAN POINTS TO THE OLD SUN GOD WHO NOW RISES AND PUTS OUT ALL CANDLES.

OLD SUN GOD
WE BEGIN OUR JOURNEY IN DARKNESS, WE END OUR JOURNEY IN DARKNESS. THE WHEEL TURNS AND NOTHING REMAINS THE SAME.           REPEATS 3 TIMES

THE TOLLING OF A BELL OR CHIME BEGINS TO SLOWLY SOUND. HOLD THE SILENCE FOR A FEW MINUTES. (NOW A DRUM SHOULD SOFTLY BEGIN TO BEAT A SLOW SOFT SINGLE BEAT CADENCE.)

CRONE:
EACH OF YOU HAS KNOWN DARKNESS. EACH FAMILY, EACH COMMUNITY… IT IS ETCHED IN YOUR MEMORIES- IT LIVES IN YOUR BROKEN HEARTS AND SHATTERED DREAMS.

YES, THESE ARE GREAT AND TERRIBLE DARKNESSES. AND YET- THERE IS GREATER DARKNESS, FAR GREATER THAN THESE. IT IS THE DARKNESS WHICH PRECEDED ALL, AND HOLDS ALL WITHIN IT. THIS IS THE DARKNESS OF THE GREAT MOTHER, SHE WHO IS THE SOURCE OF ALL CREATION. AND IN WHOSE PREGNANT WOMB ALL CREATION WAITS TO BE REMADE AND REBORN. (PAUSE) (DRUM BEGINS A SOFT HEARTBEAT)

AND YOU HER CHILDREN, SHE DOES NOT FORGET! BE NOT AFRAID, FOR YOU ARE NEITHER ABANDONED NOR FORSAKEN. EVEN NOW THE GODDESS LABORS TO BIRTH THE LIGHT. THE SLUMBERING ANIMALS ARE DREAMING OF IT. THE SEEDS NOW LYING IN THE DARK EARTH KNOW THE TIME IS COMING AND PUSH THROUGH DARKNESS, TO SEEK NEW LIGHT. TRUST THE LABORING DARKNESS, FOR THE LIGHT IS COMING. A TIME OF AWAKENING IS COMING. A TIME WHEN BURDENS WILL BE LIFTED AND REFUGEES WELCOMED. A TIME FOR THE HEALING OF GRIEF, AND THE REBIRTH OF DREAMS.  A TIME OF RENEWAL. BUT ONLY (PAUSE) - IF THE PEOPLE HELP. EACH OF YOU (POINT TO THE GATHERED PEOPLE) MUST MAKE A PLACE OF HOPE AND WELCOME IN YOUR HEARTS FOR THE NEW LIGHT!

DO YOU HOLD A PLACE OF HOPE IN YOUR HEARTS? (PEOPLE ANSWER YES!) WILL YOU WELCOME THE NEW LIGHT? (PEOPLE ANSWER YES!!) THEN JOIN TOGETHER TO TURN THE WHEEL! LOOK TO THE EAST AND HELP THE LIGHT TO BE REBORN!    
 
(DRUMMING) BEGIN CHANT:

WE WILL KINDLE A FIRE

SPIRIT OF FIRE COME TO US; WE WILL KINDLE A FIRE.
SPIRIT OF FIRE COME TO US; WE WILL KINDLE A FIRE.
WE WILL KINDLE A FIRE!

DANCE THE MAGIC CIRCLE 'ROUND,
WE WILL KINDLE A FIRE!
WE WILL KINDLE A FIRE.

THE YOUNG GOD NOW WALKS FORWARD AND WITH A WHITE TAPER LIGHTS THE WINTER SOLSTICE CANDLE FROM THE YULE LOG.

THE YOUNG GOD:
THE PEOPLE IN DARKNESS HAVE SEEN A GREAT LIGHT, AND THOUGH THIS LIGHT IS YET SMALL, AS IT GROWS IN EACH OF US IT WILL GROW STRONGER. WE HAVE SHARED LIGHT WITH EACH OTHER, NOW WE INVITE THOSE PRESENT TO SHARE A HOPE OR A WISH FOR THE NEW YEAR.

(SHARING)

CENTER/LEADER: LET US NOW SIT TOGETHER IN QUIET DARKNESS AND NEWBORN LIGHT. LET US TAKE THESE SHARED HOPES AND DREAMS AND PLACE THEM IN OUR HEARTS.

CENTER/LEADER: LET THE SUN GOD NOW BLESS THE PEOPLE!

THE BLESSING OF THE NEWBORN SUN GOD:

"OUT OF DARKNESS LIGHT IS RE-BORN. CARRY THE HOPE OF THIS MOMENT LIKE A TORCH IN YOUR HEARTS THROUGH THE COMING YEAR. LET IT SUSTAIN YOU IN YOUR TIMES OF DARKNESS, AND BE A SYMBOL OF BLESSING IN YOUR TIMES OF JOY. LET PEACE BE WITH YOU.

CLOSING

LEADER/CENTER: LET US NOW THANK THIS PLACE OF SPIRIT THAT PERVADES ALL, THIS PLACE OF THE GODDESS AND THE GOD, OF ALL THAT FIRST SET IN PLACE THE TURNING WHEEL OF THE YEAR. WE THANK YOU FOR JOINING  WITH US IN OUR SOLSTICE CELEBRATION. TO THE POWERS OF THE CENTER, WE THANK YOU FOR YOUR PRESENCE AT OUR RITUAL. WE THANK YOU FOR THE NEW LIGHT OF THIS WINTER SOLSTICE. LET IT GROW STRONG ENOUGH TO TRANSFORM OUR LIVES. BLESSED BE!

SOUTH GUARDIAN:
TO THE POWERS OF THE SOUTH, WE THANK YOU FOR YOUR PRESENCE AT OUR RITUAL. LET US CARRY THIS NEW LIGHT IN OUR HEART WITH WISDOM. HAIL & FAREWELL

WEST GUARDIAN:
TO THE POWERS OF THE WEST, WE THANK YOU FOR YOUR PRESENCE AT OUR RITUAL. LET US CARRY THE NEW LIGHT WITH HEARTS FILLED WITH COMPASSION. LET US DREAM NEW DREAMS AND WEAVE THEM INTO BEING. HAIL & FAREWELL

NORTH GUARDIAN:
TO THE POWERS OF THE NORTH, WE THANK YOU FOR YOUR PRESENCE AT OUR RITUAL. LET US CARRY THE NEW LIGHT WITH THE PASSION AND POWER OF LOVE. HAIL & FAREWELL

EAST GUARDIAN:
TO THE POWERS OF THE EAST, WE THANK YOU FOR YOUR PRESENCE AT OUR RITUAL. LET US CARRY THE NEW LIGHT WITH NEW THOUGHTS AND NEW SONGS. LET US BEGIN NOW AS A NEW YEAR BEGINS. HAIL & FAREWELL.







* This ritual is a combination of the author's original ideas and information obtained from various books and/or internet sources.



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Spheres Of Light (SOL) is an Australian Pagan group (eg. Witches, Wiccans, Heathens, Shamans, Magicians, Occultists etc) meeting in the Sutherland Shire,
Southern Sydney, the Illawarra & surrounding regions of NSW. SOL conducts Full Moon & Dark Moon circles, workshops, classes, meditations & healing circles,
with a strong emphasis on modern shamanic practices & eclectic witchcraft.

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