The Druid Circle of the year
We, the Druids of the First Circle, celebrate the cycle of the year. In addition to the Equinoxes and Solstices, we celebrate the Cross Quarter festivals. Each festival brings a new ceremony, unique each time but in keeping with the relative, common theme every year. In this way we celebrate the great diversity of nature, as she gives us something unique each year.
As the old Celtic year began with Samhain, we begin our year of celebrations with that Holy Day. This is a time when the veil between the worlds is thinner. We remember and honor our ancestors and can more closely connect with the otherworld.
Alban Arthan is celebrated at winter solstice. This, the shortest day and longest night of the year, marks the turning point where the cold days of the year head toward the longer, warmer days of spring.
Imbolc, also called Oimelc, is the time we celebrate the first renewal of life. Spring isn't here yet, but it is not far away. The first hardy flowers have started pushing their way through the snow, and lambs are born at this time of year. These signs of spring give us reason to celebrate the new life that comes with spring.
Alban Eiler, the spring equinox, is celebrated as the turning point at which spring has arrived. From this day of equal times of light and dark, we will see the days become longer as well as warmer. Spring planting is under way, now.
Beltane, the first of May, we celebrate the joyful spring. Flowers are blooming. Birds are singing. New life is brought forth all around us. The crops we planted earlier in the year are showing the signs of the harvest to come.
Alban Heruin, the summer solstice, has the longest day and the shortest night of the year. On this day we celebrate the light that gives us life. The days will become progressively shorter as we travel on to harvest times on the wheel of the year.
Lughnasadh is celebrated as the first harvest festival. Breads are usually a big part of our celebrations as we remember the life that is given to us through grain harvesting. This day reminds us of the importance of receiving the fruits of our labors.
Alban Elued is celebrated as the fruit harvest. By now all harvesting is complete and storing up for winter has begun. This is a balance day with day and night being of equal length. From this day, nights will become longer and colder on the way to the year's end and the beginning of a new year at Samhain.
Published in Circle of the Year