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PostAuthor: Tylluan » Wed May 01, 2013 7:52 am

Beltane (most commonly pronounced "BELL-tayn", but also can be "BEEL-teen", "BEEL-tawn-uh", or "B'YAL-tinn") is one of the Greater Wiccan Sabbats and is usually celebrated on May 1st, but can be on the night of April 30th, depending on your tradition or - if you are solitary - simply your personal choice. In the Celtic tradition it is celebrated on May 1st or the first Full Moon in Taurus. The Scottish tradition of PectiWita celebrate their Sabbat on May 15th.

Other names used for this Sabbat are Bealtaine (Irish Wittan), Whitsun or Old Bhealltainn (Scottish PectiWita), Bealtinne (Caledonii or the Druids), Samhradh and La Baal Tinne (Faery Wicca), Roodmas, Rudemas (Mexican Craft), Walburga (Teutonic), Walpurgisnacht (German), Walpurgis Eve, Celtic Summer, Giamonios, Tana's Day - La Giornata di Tana (Aridian Strega), Floralia, The Great Rite, May Day, and May Eve. It is also known as Cetshamain in Ireland, and is one of the few specifically Irish festivals.

This Sabbat is primarily a fertility festival, with Nature enchantments and offerings to wildlings and Elementals. The return of full-blown fertility is now very evident. The powers of elves and fairies are growing and will reach their height at Summer Solstice. Celebrants sometimes jump over broomsticks or dance around May Poles, both as symbols of fertility. Bonfire leaping and horn blowing are other forms of traditional celebration. Weaving and plaiting are traditional arts at this time of year, for the joining together of two substances to form a third is in keeping with the spirit of Beltane. This Sabbat represents the Union of the God and Goddess, the Sacred Marriage, all new life, and fertility for all living things.

Most Wiccans consider this Sabbat to be the start of the Light Half of the Year - the Summer - as opposed to the Dark Half of the Year - Winter - which begins on Samhain. Most Wiccans view this as the half of the year which is ruled by the Goddess, while the dark half is ruled by the God. As I stated above - this is a fertility Sabbat - and traditionally is considered to be the time that the God and Goddess are wed. It is also considered to be the time that He impregnates Her as they are "sexually connected" on this day. This is represented symbolically by the wrapping of the May Pole. In the olden days, the May Pole was made from a communal pine tree which had been decorated at Yule, with most of its branches removed at this time. A few of the uppermost branches could remain if desired. Traditionally, the ribbons attached around the top of the May Pole are red and white... this is to represent either one of these: the red as the Sun God and the white as the Virgin Goddess, or the white for the Maiden and the red for the Mother. The participants dance around the May Pole carrying the ribbons - the males holding the red and the females holding the white. As they dance, they weave and intertwine the ribbons to form a symbolic birth canal wrapped around the phallic pole, representing the union of the Goddess and God. Many Wiccans choose this time to perform their own Handfastings or Weddings. Another great choice would be the next Sabbat at the Summer Solstice.
Happy Beltane.jpg
Happy Beltane.jpg (8.61 KiB) Viewed 1796 times
May your summers and winters be short, springs be mild and autumn reaping plentiful.

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