Thursday, 13 August 2009

Tentative Brythonic Ritual

Ok a little more on ritual seeing as I have gotten this running through my head.

1: The Greeting - for a gathering of several people, the 'greeting' described would be an ideal kick-off either when everyone arrives or prior to getting ready for the ritual proper. Ideally it is something that is done as soon as the attendees gather – largely to blend ritual into the everyday rather than a denoted time only.

2: Preparation of the space – this is a bit of a hangover I have from Wicca, but I find it to be a very useful tool when you have several people perhaps not from a close working group as it helps centre and focus and foster a state of mind conducive to what is about to take place. Ideally a central fire or brazier – the centre and focus, the place for the gods. Anyone who has sat before or around an open fire will know the power they hold over us. Ritualise the fire making and lighting, say a few words as it is lit, invite the god or goddess of the fire to take notice of what is being done. I find that washing and certainly the preparation of the self is a useful tool in these situations. It adds a lot to the 'feel' of things. Of course do what is appropriate and possible given the circumstance.

3: The Invitation – ask the gods to be part of the circle, ask them to the honoured guests. Ask the ancestors and local spirits to come too. Make them feel welcomed and part of proceedings. This could be a song, poetic or prose evocation.

4: The Sacrifice – though I refer to this bit as sacrifice, it is the point when offerings or libations are made. This is when food and drink is shared with those present and the gods. The first portion should be offered into the fire for the gods as honoured guests, some left out in the ground or in a bowl for the local spirits and some left for the ancestors on a plate or bowl. I like the idea of burning the gods portion, it continues the 'taking it out use' theme that you find in Iron Age water deposits, the breaking or metal offerings so that they are of no mortal use. Whilst the offering to the local spirits can be left for the local wildlife (sensible thinking here of course), the ancestors portion can be left to one side for the rest of the gathering and then perhaps left out for the wildlife too. This is also the time when other offerings can be made whether they be physcial objects made or bought or words crafted especially. I think it is useful when in a group to add words to the sacrifice or offering – it opens it up to the group.

5: A.O.B – this is the point where other things can be discussed or taken part in, oracles, divination. Things like that.

6: The Parting – whether at the very end of the ritual proper or when the gathering ends some sort of formalised and ritualised farewell should be made I think. Not sure on a format though.

Points 1 and 6 can be carried out independently of the rest if at all, I think they add to the sense of weaving ritual actions into the everyday whereas 2-5 are much more focussed on a specific ritual event, that said the ritual of lighting preparing and lighting the fire could be broken off and carried out as a stand alone.

Ok, there is my ritual blogasm for now. Lots more to think of and more to add in time.

No comments: