December Full Moon Esbat

Background
Moonlight glitters on the frosty earth. Time seems frozen, but the night air tingles with energy. This is the Moon of Completion. We have come full circle through the twelve months. As the Wheel of the Year makes its final turn and begins a new cycle, we pause to reflect on the path that brought us here and where it may lead us in the year to come. Through ritual we focus our minds and energy on intention. Stating an intention is the first step in manifesting what you want into the physical realm. Stating intention is a sacred process and a magical act when it is invested with your heart and soul.

Full Moon Ritual

Setup
Burn, bury or somehow commit back to nature the things used. Items needed for this ritual include: A small tree branch with a number of smaller branches so you can work “in miniature” (it is intention that counts); Basket of ribbons or yarn cut to 6- or 12-inch lengths; A Drum (optional).

Ritual
Walk around the perimeter of your circle carrying the branch as you say:

This circle I cast at year’s finish,
Faith and unity never diminish.

As above, so below, so mote it
Sacred this space I now decree, blessed be.

Face each direction as you speak. For the Lord and Lady, face center.

Spirits of North, of Earth, I call to you this night. Be with me as the quiet meadows wrapped in a blanket of welcoming snow. I bid you welcome to my circle.

Spirits of East, of Air, I call to you this night. Be with me as the soft whisper that is heard in the frozen stillness of the woods. I bid you welcome to my circle.

Spirits of South, of Fire, I call to you this night. Be with me as the pale sunlight that softly illuminates but does not disturb the sleepers. I bid you welcome to my circle.

Spirits of West, of Water, I call to you this night. Be with me as the clear ice that holds Nature’s secrets until the spring. I bid you welcome to my circle.

Lord of All, I call to you this night. Be with me as the vital spark that rests quietly within the world, within the womb. I bid you welcome to my circle.

Lady of All, I call to you this night. Be with me as the slumbering Goddess who renews the world through a long peaceful sleep. I bid you welcome to my circle.

tree symbolizes many things. The Tree of Life connects the realms. It also symbolizes unity. Like the branches of a tree, you bring many aspects of your life together in your spirituality. In this ritual, a branch is a symbol for unity and intention.

Think of your intentions for doing ritual. Why are you following this path? What do you seek? What would you like to find in your spiritual life? What commitments or renewal of commitments do you want to make to your spirituality? Give voice to your intentions and commitments.

Take a piece of ribbon from the basket. Hold it between your hands as you think of your intention; invest it with your love. As you state your intention, tie the ribbon to one of the branches. It may be that you want to deepen your spirituality or seek other ways to express it. Use a separate ribbon for each intention/commitment.

When you are finished, hold the branch high above your head and walk around the circle saying:
I have come here this night with strong purpose. I have made my intentions and commitments known.

Lower the branch over the fire or set it alight safely in your cauldron, and say:
As the sacred fire consumes this branch, my intentions are released to transform into energy, which will work to manifest them into the physical world.

As the branch burns, begin a chant as you dance around the fire or cauldron:
“Air moves us,
Fire transforms us,
Water shapes us,
Earth heals us.
And the balance of the wheel
Goes ’round and ’round,
of the wheel goes ’round.”

When it feels appropriate, bring your chanting and movement to stillness. Use your usual method for grounding energy.

Feasting.

Face each direction as you speak; turn to center for the Lord and Lady.

Lady of All, you have come to me this night and witnessed my intentions. I ask for your blessings as I complete this year and prepare to move on to the next. Thank you for your presence with me this night. Stay if you will, go if you must. I bid you farewell.

Lord of All, you have come to me this night and witnessed my intentions. I ask for your blessings as I complete this year and prepare to move on to the next. Thank you for your presence with me this night. Stay if you will, go if you must. I bid you farewell.

Spirits of West, of Water, may your clear ice that holds Nature’s secrets also hold my intentions. Thank you for your presence with me this night. Stay if you will, go if you must. I bid you farewell.

Spirits of South, of Fire, may the pale winter sun illuminate my intentions. Thank you for your presence with me this night. Stay if you will, go if you must. I bid you farewell.

Spirits of East, of Air, may the crisp air whisper my intentions through the winter. Thank you for your presence with me this night. Stay if you will, go if you must. I bid you farewell.

Spirits of North, of Earth, may your meadows receive my intentions and help them grow in the spring. Thank you for your presence with me this night. Stay if you will, go if you must. I bid you farewell.

Walk around your circle as you say:

Wheel of the Year, cycle complete.
Endings, beginnings, both shall meet.
What lies ahead, I cannot see.
My faith I will follow, blessed be.

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