The public version of the Church Newsletter
is available HERE (PDF)
In the Belly of the Mother.
By Suki; Originally published in the 2010 Lammas Newsletter
There were many valid reasons for some folks to miss this event:
Still, I’m also ecstatic for having had – and taken – the opportunity to attend this ritual.
This is a “living” cave – there is still water flowing through it and natural onyx is still growing in a cool, near-100% humidity atmosphere. To touch the walls or to get too near them with our candles could easily have damaged the natural progression of that growth. We were warned to wear sturdy, water-resistant shoes – there is indeed standing water in many places along the path. We were warned to wear warm clothes, as the cave does not get above 60 degrees – ever.
John coached us in a pre-ritual workshop in the chants for the ritual. This, in itself, was a challenge; getting about 40 people to stay together in a multi-part chant in one sitting is only a hair’s breadth away from its own miracle. The addition of drums turned out to be miracle’s catalyst.
That evening, we processed to the cave, carrying our candles and our jackets, in over 80-degree heat, with 75% humidity (well, it felt like it anyway) and increasing cloud cover. Quickly shrugging into those jackets on entry, we made our way down the lit pathway to the sound of water trickling down the cave walls, chanting as best we could as we walked. Down and over, down, over again and down some more, ending up in a room that had once been a reservoir of the water that was flowing into the cave. With gravel under our feet and our breath condensing in front of us, we gathered.
There was no need for a microphone; the merest whisper could be heard across the cavern. Yet even the children in attendance seemed to sense that this was a time to stay close to their own mothers, and to watch and simply experience. Our candles were lit. The electric lights were extinguished.
There was no need to cast a circle; how could we define sacred space better than the walls of the cave?
Well, how could They not show up with that kind of an invitation? With a few words for our waiting ears, She crowned the Horned One as her True Consort; Her partner in maintaining the cycle of birth, life, death and rebirth.
Well, things got wrapped up after that, and we picked our way back up the pathway to the entry of the cave, to be greeted by a great cascade of rainwater flowing down the steps – that cloud cover had hit its saturation point and dumped about a half-inch of rain while we were in the cave.
But did that stop us from lighting our vigil fire and watching for the sunrise of Midsummer’s Day? Not even close!
Awe: noun - an overwhelming feeling of reverence, admiration, fear, etc., produced by that which is grand, sublime, extremely powerful, or the like.
Awesome: This Ritual! Thank you, John!
So you see, as your May Queen, I can hereby certify that the Wheel of the Year has, indeed, turned another 45 degrees. We are well and truly headed for the First Harvest of Lammas!
Website Copyright © 2001-2015 Wiccan Church of Minnesota