My own celebration of this holiday is focused on the Tuatha De Danann, the Irish Mythology Story that gives us the heroes and heroines of Ireland, as well as the story of how the Giants became the Wee folk. I celebrate my own cultural history on this holiday, and do honor to my ancestors.
While not so much a ritual, it is more of a remembrance, a meditation and I read the battle story and reflect on this time of year, and how we return our focus to the earth, and reflect on the dream seeds we planted at Ostara. How have your dreams progressed and how much to our own roots are we connected? Celebrate this holiday with remembrance of your own ancestors, how they made contact with the earth and how you will make your own connection with your dreams.
In a quiet place I will set my candle of meditation for the evening. And I will pull out the book that presents me with the history of my culture. I have an Irish background, and the meaning of Beltane is buried deep in the mists of Ireland before the time that is now.
We were the Children of Danu. We were returning home to Ireland after a long time in exile. We were taken as slaves by the Greeks, left Greece, traveled much and learned the ways of magic. We became strong in their magics and finally decided to head home to Ireland. We were giants and we brought with us our magical tools: the stone of Destiny, the spear of Lugh, the sword of Nuada and the cauldron of Daghda.
The Tuatha de Danaan arrived in Ireland on Beltane Eve, riding on a cloud of smoke. We did battle with the Firbolgs and defeated them. There is another wave of invasion after us and a second battle, this time with the Formorians and Danu's Children overcame them as well. It is the third wave of invasion, in battle with the Milesians in which the Tuatha De Danann were defeated, and we were sent into exile in the fogs of Ireland to the ancient hollow hills; the fairy mounds.
The giant folk became the wee folk and we still are remembered in the stories and everyday life of the Irish people. That we dwell within the earth is significant. That we retained our magic is also significant.
Beltane is the time of year when the fields are plowed and seed is planted. While this does not hold for all climates and locations, it is a time for city dwellers and country dwellers alike to remember where our foods come from as you walk through the supermarkets. We don't see a lot of fresh produce at this time of year, and we should remember to thank the gods for their bounty last year and ask for another strong growing season this year with a plentiful harvest to come.
I look out the windows at the landscape and I see signs that spring is upon us. A new year to grow and mature. We planted the seeds of dreams at Ostara; how are these seeds doing now? Do we see small strong plants taking root, or have we neglected our dreams and we find just a sad pot of dirt bearing nothing?
As the Children of Danann came home and had to fight for their homeland, so too our dreams need us to bring them home and fight for their growth. We start as giants with big ideas and we end as the wee folk, strong in our magic with many smaller dreams fulfilled.
Reflection here is on taking our dreams and realizing they need to be brought down to reality level, then nurtured and loved till they bloom with the magic that each of us has within ourselves. What big dreams we had when we looked at the spring and renewal; now we have reality to help us measure our growth. Someday the big dreams may come to pass, but when we measure our abilities now, are we strong enough for big dreams now, or should we start with the smaller ones first till we are stonger? Maybe we need smaller ones in place to establish the larger ones. Time to reflect on our goals.
The meditation is how we are going to overcome the obstacles in our lives; how we are going to live large. And how we are going to use our magic to make a better world for ourselves and our loved ones. Are we are going to plant those dream seeds again, and this time work to make them grow and mature and become the reflection of our lives we want them to be?
Live the dream. Be the dream. Remember that dreams can get big and out of control, like weeds. We need to contain them to a level of reality, but never give up on them. One persons weeds is another persons wildflowers. Don't forget to log in your book where you have gone since you first planted your seeds of dreams,how much you have worked on them and how much you have to work on them further.
The meditation is done for now. Come back to this and measure your growth by the seed dreams you have planted, or need to replant and try again. Don't give up. Rather, give in to your dreams and make them reality. It is easy once you make up your mind to try.
Now it's time to have a hot meal, fine drink and if you have the opportunity, good conversation with friends and family. Here's to a healthy and prosperous season.