Today is known as Beltane from the Gaelic Bealtaine, a fire and fertility festival that celebrates the emergence of vitality and passion of the Sun god into manhood. Beltane is one of the eight Solar Sabbats, and is actually more closely related to the Germanic “May Day”. You many recall the saying of “dancing around the May pole”. The May pole represents the phallus and is therefore a fertility symbol.
The May pole was a focal point of the village rituals. Many people would rise at the first light of dawn to go outdoors and gather flowers and branches to decorate their homes. Women traditionally would braid flowers into their hair. Men and women alike would decorate their bodies. Stirred by the energies at work in nature, the “God desires the Goddess.” They fall in love, lie among the grasses and blossoms, and unite. The Goddess becomes pregnant of the God. The Earth Mother opens up to the Sun Father and their union brings about healthy livestock, strong crops, and new life all around.
Beltane is also a celebration of the Fey as nature spirits. Placing honey and milk in a dish in your garden is one way to show reverence. Plants that the fairy folk prefer are clover, lavender, foxglove, rosemary, or forget-me-nots. Creating an small bouquet tied with green ribbon and left in your garden is also a wonderful way of showing reverence to the fairies.
Blessed be on this Beltane!!