Under the Ancient Oaks: Devotion to Night

Good evening.

Samhain has passed, and though it is still warm here in Texas, Winter is on its way. The days have been growing shorter since the Autumn Equinox – this is the season of Night. This month, instead of the usual teaching and promotion, we’re doing something different. This is a devotion to Night, and some of the Goddesses of Night and of the Sky. I hope you find it reflective and inspiring.

Technology brings wonders, but it also brings unintended consequences. Electricity allows us to light our homes and streets. We can work and play and travel safely at all hours of the night and day.

But artificial light also means many people are expected to work through the night, disrupting circadian rhythms that evolved over millions of years. And light pollution means that most of us can see only a few of the brightest stars, instead of the thousands of stars that inspired our ancestors. For good and for ill, we have banished night.

Or so we think. The setting sun and the shortening days remind us that Night is very much with us… as are the Goddesses of Night and of the Sky. They are still here, still calling us to bathe in the moonlight, to read the wisdom of the stars, and to listen to what we cannot see.

Blessed be the Night. Blessed be the Goddesses of Night.

night sky 06.23.13

My thanks to everyone who participated in the making of this video. To Russell Griffin, who showed us his passion for the sky. To Matt Whealton, who when I couldn’t find a suitable hymn to Nut, offered to write one. Here’s a link to Matt’s site, with the text of the hymn and an audio recording of him speaking it as it might have been spoken in ancient Egyptian. To Amorella Moon, who sent me a book of her devotions to Night and allowed me to pick the one I liked best. To Gabrielle Milburn and Morgan Milburn, who showed their dedication on an unseasonably cold night. To Hannah Nutt, who breathed life into a 225 year old translation of a 2600 year old hymn. And to Cynthia Talbot, who honored the Neteru once again and who opened her home for one of the video shoots.

That’s all for this month. May the blessings of the Gods and ancestors be with you, now and in the days – and nights – to come.

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