A Really, Really Ridiculous Lughnasad Ritual

A Really, Really Ridiculous Lughnasad Ritual July 7, 2014

By 2005, many of us in our local ritual group had been putting together large public ceremonies for over 20 years.  Each Sabbat (some years 4, others all 8) we gathered a team, had many meetings, and discussed/wrote/put music to/printed scripts and flyers/rented space for 50-100 people to celebrate the holy days.  It was (and is, for those still in the center of it!) a lot of work.

But we were (and continue to be, many of us) really great friends so, while the schedule could be arduous, we had many many laughs while doing it. In fact, we came up with lots of hilarious ideas that ended up on the cutting room floor because we thought maybe they were just a bit too irreverent.  But for whatever reason, that wondrous year, we decided that we would go ahead and put together a ritual that didn’t hold back on the humor. And it has to do with the early harvest, so it’s perfectly at home here!  Enjoy!

What ya need: On the Northern altar:

  • 1 Carrot for every 10 people
  • 1 Potato

On the Eastern altar:

  • A mess of Red and Green Apples

On the Southern altar:

  • A lot of whatever kind of Berries that are in season where you live

On the Western altar:

Chakra Colors and Quarter Quadrants
  • A few cut-up Watermelons (with seeds!)
  • A cloth or paper with some sort of Target, split into quadrants for Earth, Air, Fire and Water and/or the colors of the Chakras (see pic)

If you can have folks who are from these parts of the world call Quarters, it’s extra-fun, but not required.1The Set-up:

  • Most of the time in our rituals, we come together in a spirit of deep reverence.  We share our griefs and our joys in the spirit of community; we open our hearts and minds in order to know and love ourselves and each other better.  We do this in service to the Gods, for we are Their Priests.  But we are also Their children and sometimes, just as children do, we need to play! We want to remember that a part of the Goddess’ Charge to us is to keep Reverence and Mirth in our hearts.  Joy and laughter are just as much a part of our path and Introspection and Silence.  So we practice being Reverentially Mirthful, Joyously Devotional, Introspectively Hilarious.  And know that, just as we all love to see children laugh and play, so too do the Gods look upon our laughter and our play with delight–we are their children and our happiness is a gift to our Good Mother and Good Father.  Let’s make them smile and say, “Look, Honey!  Aren’t they cute!”

Grounding and Circle Casting:

  • The plan is to end up with everyone centered and able to move around in personal “circles” that act much like a bubble.
  • Begin by moving from one foot to the other.  Rock your body back and forth. As you do this, feel your connection there.  Understand that you are a rooted person.  Continue to rock back and forth.  If your eyes are not open, open them now.  Feel with your skin.  Hear with your ears.  See with your eyes.  Know through your spirit. Be aware of your own experience.  Feel yourself rooted through your own experience.  Be here now.
  • Now, cast your personal circle.  Keeping your senses open to your own experience, concentrate on your center of power that rests in your belly.   Feel it.  Breathe into that cradle of power that sits just within your hips.  As you feel it fill with your breath, expand your power.  Let it grow within you until it fills your torso.  Continue to rock in a centered way and breathe power into your cradle.  When you’re ready expand your power further until it fills your arms, legs and head.   Feel that.  Continue to breathe in power.  When you’re ready, expand your circle one last time.  Let is become like a bubble around you.  Where it touches other people’s bubbles, let that be a place of strength, where both your energies provide to each other, making that surface even stronger.  Get a sense of this.  Get a real sense of yourself as a lasting bubble of earth!2

Invoke powers of the directions :

  • North Quarter Caller invites the assembled folk to call on the aspects of the North/the Earth that are funny/silly/delightful ~ “The surprise tickle in the dark”, “Mr. Heavy-feet from Kids in the Hall”, so on.  If they do this in a really bad fake Canadian accent, it’s extra funny.
  • East/Air QC does the same as North.  Again, fake accents (New York?) make this funnier.
  • South/Fire QC does the same as the others.
  • Also West/Water.

Priests invoke Mom and Dad:

Good Father,

You are the Future, the Now, and the Past

You are Growth, Harvest and Rest.

Our Lord of Perfect Timing, we invite you.

We call you…….

Insert folks calling out how they see Him today

Come celebrate our harvest!

Watch us play!

Take part as you see fit!

Thanks for your body we take joy in it!

Hail and be Welcome.

Good Mother,

Body of Earth, Singer between the Stars.

Source of all things.

Boundless intelligence and brilliant wit.

Mother of Fools and Tricksters.

We call you…

Again, folks call out their visions of Her

Come celebrate our harvest!

Watch us play!

Take part as you see fit!

Thanks for your body we take joy in it!

Hail and be Welcome.

North QC introduces the game of Freeze Tag:

The Ritual Announcement
(jk, ours wasn’t this cool)
  • Choose who’s “IT” (1 for every 10 people)
  • ITs get a carrot each
  • There is 1 potato on the North altar
  • When the whistle is blown, ITs try to freeze everyone
  • Some valiant soul tries to get to the altar to grab the magickal unfreezing potato, with which they, in great service to us all, start unfreezing people
  • When all are frozen, game ends
  • North QC should take the potato and unfreeze everyone because Jeez, we have more things to do today!
  • Try to think of something intelligent to say about the mystery of how we help or hinder each other in life

Then!  Everyone back into a circle for… East QC introduces the Apple Pass:

  • They hold one apple of red and one of green
  • Start passing the two apples around the circle deosil (clockwise)
  • At a random moment, they call out that the apples must now go widdershins (anti-clockwise)
  • At another random moment, they call out that the red apple must go deosil and the green apple must go widdershins
  • Let the energy get faster and more frantic by periodically adding more apples of both colors and changing their direction
  • Slowly begin taking apples out of circulation until there’s only one left
  • Say something brilliant that you’ve just made up on the spot about that, maybe something about the Highlander

South QC introduces the Berry Toss:

  • Count off 1-2 and all the 1s make another circle within the first, facing out
  • Have runners handing out berries to the outer circle
  • Call out “Toss!” and everyone tries to toss the berries into the other person’s mouth
  • Have the inner circle take a jump to the left3
  • Repeat ad infinitum, or until the berries run out
  • Again, try to speak some words that will suddenly and extraordinarily fully enlighten all people everywhere

West QC introduces the Watermelon Seed Divination:

  • Pull out the Target and place it in the center of the circle
  • Hand out the pieces of watermelon
  • Everyone eat the yummy fruit with much drippage off the chin and hands
  • Spit the seeds onto the target
  • When all the melon is gone, some extremely gifted person (or many people, or whoever happens to be there) divines the future for the group

And on that profound note, le ritual, c’est fini. Proceed with formal or informal devocations of our Good Mother and Good Father, the Quarters, and any other spirits invited or uninvited. Remind the folk that they still inhabit their personal Circle and that they may grow or shrink or release it as desired. Merry meet, merry part, and merry meet again! 1 When we did this ritual, we made tokens of letter beads for the ritualists to wear.  The North Quarter Caller’s said “Eh”, the East’s “Yo”, the South’s “Y’all”, and the West’s “Dude”.  Yes, I know, and this must be done with all respect, for reals.  It’s only funny if it’s not mean. 2 Much love to John Crowley who, on the preface page of Little, Big (the greatest book ever) quoted Flora Thomson from Lark Rise:

A little later, remembering man’s earthly origin, ‘dust thou art and to dust thou shalt return,’ they liked to fancy themselves bubbles of earth.  When alone in the fields, with no one to see them, they would hop, skip and jump, touching the earth as lightly as possible and crying ‘We are bubbles of earth!  Bubbles of earth! Bubbles of earth!’

3 And then a step to the riiiiiight!

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