“Excavators uncovered one of Malta’s most famous Neolithic sculptures, the “Sleeping Lady” of the Hypogeum, off the main hall. She reclines peacefully on her side, head in hand…This sculpture and another one shown lying on her stomach on a couch reminds us of initiation and healing rites known in later classical times. During these various classical ceremonies, the initiate spent a night in the temple (or cave or other remote place). The initiate experienced a night of visions and dreams, with spiritual or physical healing taking place…This rite probably derived from Neolithic practices that likened sleeping in a cave, temple, or underground chamber to slumbering in the goddess’ uterus before spiritual reawakening. For the living, such a ritual brought physical healing and spiritual rebirth. For the dead, burial within underground chambers, shaped and colored like the uterus, represented the possibility of regeneration through the goddess’ symbolic womb.“
New moon in Scorpio, queen of watery depths, secrets, storms and magic. Jupiter and Pluto are playing together. Mars just went direct and Venus passed through a moon gate…
Whew. If you’re feeling wrung out and emotionally exhausted, you are not alone. What a wild and stormy time!
Create a calm, quiet space to nest and rest. Think soft blankets, warm comfort foods, happy movies, slow walks in nature, long hot baths. Nurture yourself. And if tears come, allow them to flow. Scorpio can be quite wet and watery.
Every new moon is a wonderful time to set intentions for the next cycle. After nesting and resting awhile, consider what you want to focus on or create in the next month.
“This is Lunar Samhain (the New Moon in Scorpio is the Lunar gate for Samhain) AND it is the precise Solar gate of Samhain (the exact midpoint between Fall Equinox and Winter Solstice is when the Sun cross 15 Scorpio).
“We have a rare event of Solar and Lunar gates aligning- a Hierosgamos, a sacred marriage in the depths, in the dark and in the abyss. This is a VERY POWERFUL SAMHAIN PORTAL. The massive endings, releasing, letting go and completion of old karmic patterns that you commit to, initiate and follow through on in the coming months until Winter Solstice is nothing short of profound.
… Something massive is ending, something quite significant is about to begin- and right now we are in that fallow period where the degree to which we can let go, surrender and truly sit with loss, grief and endings (rather than fill them up with the next person/place/thing/substance so as to avoid the feelings that arise) informs the heights to which the phoenix can rise once this deep, internal period is over…
We have the promise of new life amidst the inevitability of death. we are reminded that how we end things informs the next cycle of new beginnings….”
As we hold Easter egg hunts and gift those we love with bunny shaped candies this weekend, we are actually tapping into European rites of spring from pre-Christian times. The ancient Germanic Goddess Eostre (aka Ostara) embodied spring, the season of rebirth, renewal and new growth. Eostre’s symbology included fertile rabbits as well as the egg.
The sacred moon Goddess Ix Chel holds a similar place of honor in the Mayan culture. Ix Chel has been worshipped throughout Mexico and many parts of Central and South America for thousands of years. It is said that Ix Chel is responsible for sending rain to nourish the crops, and was sometimes called “Lady Rainbow”. She insures fertility by overturning her sacred womb jar so that the waters will flow through the world, nourishing new life.
Like Eostre, Ix Chel is also associated with rabbits. She is shown above with her beloved consort rabbit:
“the Goddess Ix Chel, known as the Maya[n] Goddess of the Moon, Water, Weaving and Childbirth… all having to do with cycles, tides, creating and bringing new life.
Her Rabbit consort/ child/sister/brother/mother/father/friend is the personification of new life and cleaving to bringing the young along, the gentle spirit, the shy, and yet the enduringly fertile/creative.
She is called the pale one…and is co-existant and interchangable with the moon and the moon’s cycles… she is a miracle maker, a healer, a teacher, a keeper of stories… and as she is also the moon also going dark for three days… Ix Chel suffering torment but comes ever back to full radiant reflective light again.
There are so many Ix Chels in the world, and so many Auroras and so many Jesu’s and so many Attis’ and so many of the great One who was taken down and then came back to life in triumph.
~Clarissa Pinkola Estes
It is amazing that people in all corners of this sacred Earth created similar stories and myths of rebirth and renewal to honor spring. We are truly one Tribe.
Whatever your spiritual or religious beliefs, now is the perfect time to pause and honor this season of renewal and new growth. Create your own ritual with a lit candle, spring flowers, green shoots and leaves, stuffed bunnies… choose whatever symbolizes spring for you. Or perhaps you want to simply go and sit in nature. Just take a few moments to express your love and gratitude for spring.
As the shadows lengthen and the days grow short, my Celtic ancestors celebrated the start of their year. Depending on which source you believe, the Celtic New Year’s Festival of Samhain happened on November 1st, also known in some parts as the Day of the Dead… OR Samhain may have been celebrated at the time of the new moon in late October or early November. This year, the closest new moon falls on November 3. So, either way, now is the time to celebrate!
As winter approaches, I find it quite natural to pause long enough to acknowledge all the blessings I have received in the past year. And I also like to reflect on what I would like to create and grow in the coming year.
In honor of the approaching Celtic New Year, I offer blessings from elemental earth, air, fire, water and spirit to you.
“May the nourishment of the earth be yours, may the clarity of light be yours, may the fluency of the ocean be yours, may the protection of the ancestors be yours. And so may a slow wind work these words of love around you, an invisible cloak to mind your life.”