June New Moon Esbat

Background
In June we enjoy the longest days of the year, especially before the Summer Solstice. Even though the sun begins to withdraw after the Solstice, the shortening of days is imperceptible and we enjoy long hours of light. This is a time to be active, to feel sensuous and to be aware of our bodies and the life-force energy that flows through us. As the Wheel of the Year moves into summer, we raise the heat of this new season with both a drumming circle and a circle dance. The circle is one of the oldest and most elemental symbols. It is also a symbol of perfection and wholeness. It represents unity and endlessness. It echoes the recurring cycles of life and death and rebirth; of the sun and moon and seasons. The circle reminds us that all events, all life, and everything in the universe is connected in a perpetual flow of energy. With a circle dance power and strength is evoked. The drum is one of the oldest musical instruments known. In ancient cultures drumming was a sacred function. The rhythm of drumming and dancing connects us with nature and the heartbeat of life.

June New Moon Ritual
Moon of Life

Setup
Items needed for this ritual include: a drum or other percussion instrument (or use your hands!); Chalice; Mead or a honeyed tea such as chamomile.

Drum Sounds

Use these distinct sounds just before evoking each direction.

North – slap a hand against the center of the drumhead (avoiding a resonating sound) in a slow rhythm;

East – brush a finger over the drumhead in a circular motion;

South – with a drumstick, make a staccato rhythm at the edge of the drumhead;

West- with a drumstick, create a deep resonating rhythm in the center of the drumhead.

The Ritual

As you walk around the perimeter of your circle, lightly brush a finger over your drum in a circular motion to create a gentle sound.

As I feel the warm sun on my face,
The rhythm of life beats a fast pace,
It is time to dance and feel free,
Sacred this space, I now decree.

Move to each direction, respectively. For the Lord and Lady, stand at the altar.

North [Drumming] I call ye spirits of North, of Earth to join my celebration of life.
East [Drumming] I call ye spirits of East, of Air to join my celebration of life.
South [Drumming] I call ye spirits of South, of Fire to join my celebration of life.
West [Drumming] I call ye spirits of West, of Water to join my celebration of life.

Alternate a rhythm and counter rhythm, and then say:

I call the Lord. I call the Lady. Join my celebration of life.

Lady Moon, your light has just returned,
For the cycle of your power.
Maiden, mistress of new beginnings and youth,
Your light shine down upon the earth.

Upon night’s darkest cloak,
Let your mark be spread for all to see,
Glowing ever stronger in the sky.

Tonight let your powers of new beginnings,
Wash away the follies of last cycle.
Seep away my weariness and sorrows.
Fill me to the brim with strength and hope,
Replace faded dreams with new,
And give me the endurance to carry on.

Goddess in the sky, look down upon me,
Your Witch, Sorceress and Priestess,
In your presence, gathers here.

As the moon moves through its cycles,
May the blessing of the Maiden,
Remain strong and surround us.

In the name of the Threefold Goddess,
So mote it be.

Now is the time for meditation on your circle of life and death. Think about how music and dancing enhance your state. No other work is suggested since the energy should be directed inward.

Use your usual method of grounding energy.

Take the chalice of mead or honeyed tea from the altar and say:

In this time of the Mead Moon, the Honey Moon, the Moon of Life, I drink this to celebrate summer. I will enjoy the bright days of summer that stretch before me.

Standing at the altar, and then face each direction respectively. After speaking each part, briefly beat your drum.

Lord and Lady, I thank you for the gift of life and the enjoyment it brings. Thank you for your presence in my circle. Stay if you will, go if you must, I bid you farewell.

Spirits of West, I thank you for the resonant rhythms of the ocean. Thank you for your presence in my circle. Stay if you will, go if you must, I bid you farewell.

Spirits of South, I thank you for the crackling staccato of Fire. Thank you for your presence in my circle. Stay if you will, go if you must, I bid you farewell.

Spirits of East, I thank you for the gentle sighing of Air. Thank you for your presence in my circle. Stay if you will, go if you must, I bid you farewell.

Spirits of North, I thank you for the deep rhythm of Earth. Thank you for your presence in my circle. Stay if you will, go if you must, I bid you farewell.

My circle is open but unbroken,
No longer sacred, this space I decree.
Words of the Goddess have been spoken,
In faith and unity, blessed be.

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