Ostara, a time of reawakening, a time of balance between light and dark, as we honor the Spring Goddess Ostara, whose name means “movement toward the rising Sun”: how do you celebrate? If you are not able to be with community during this fertile time, solitary rituals can resonate and provide much needed focus as the Wheel of the Year turns ever onward.
On Ostara Eve, walk through your home with your incense of choice, and a purple or white candle. Light both and walk through each room, saying good-bye to Winter, and welcome to Spring. As you depart each room, open the window (if there is one) and let in the soft, cool air to cleanse the space. You can say something different to each room, note how it has sustained your through winter, create your own poetry, or offer a simple “thank you!” Once you are done saying good-bye to winter, blow out the candle, and add any incense ash to your garden area, again offering thanks. I like to use this time afterwards to go into each room and sprinkle Florida water in all corners, with appreciation for its clearing energy, and light, fresh scent.
For Ostara itself, decorate with flowers and items of nature. A simple bouquet of daffodils on the altar, along with yellow, white, purple and green candles are plenty. An easy ritual you can do is to boil eggs, and write on the eggs all the intentions and manifestations you would like to work on during the coming weeks. Did you set intentions at Imbolc or the New Moon? Write down what actions you will take to move them forward. Dye the eggs with natural dyes if on hand (a quick natural dye is available from your kitchen: tumeric, beets, spinach, yellow onion skins, chili powder, red cabbage, etc.) and place them on your altar when done. Or, you can decorate with the finished eggs and state your intentions out loud during the ritual, and then write them down, to be placed under the eggs or candles.
I love being outdoors on Ostara, so on that morning, go for a walk in a natural area. Take your hiking stick or pick up a stick to use as your staff along the way. Rejoice in being outdoors, and take some deep breaths. When you get to a place to honor the day, tap the ground with the stick three times to welcome the Goddess. Make a joyful noise as you tap the ground, in multiples of three. Reach up with your arms skyward and feel the breath course through your body, smile widely, and take notice of all the nature around you. Do you see trees budding, flowers blooming, and hear the sounds of birds? Take all that you view deep inside, and store it up for the coming days. Take all that nature investment, head home, and honor your deities at your altar. Prepare food and drink for them, rejoicing in the coming season. Rededicate yourself to your spiritual practice, and list ways on which you will fulfill that promise. Update your Book of Shadows, or organize it if you have not done so already. Face the new season filled with commitment, gratitude and appreciation for all that will come forth.If you are fortunate enough to live on a plot of land, walk the boundaries of your property on the morning of Ostara, carrying a cup of breadcrumbs or cornmeal. Mark the boundaries of your land with this natural element, honoring your property, and providing sustenance for the birds as well. Bury an uncooked egg on all four corners of the land, to ensure a productive time ahead, imbuing it with wishes for all members of the household (each member can bury their own in their preferred corner for a group activity). Pour a cup of milk mixed with honey over each of the four corners, to ensure that the process will be sweet, and to honor the land spirits. Scatter your land with bright and colorful candies for the land spirits, with thanks for all that they do.
Living in an apartment, you can also partake in Ostara, never fear! Buy some local herb plants, a few flowering plants and decorate your balcony, window, or kitchen. Honor the growth of plants and make sure they have plenty of sunlight. If your apartment doesn’t get much sun, take some of your favorite crystals, especially those with spring-like colors (rose quartz, lepidolite, clear quartz, etc.) and set up your altar with those. Add lemons and a few sprigs of parsley in a glass of water to complete your setting, and rejoice in those earthy and Spring-like smells.
A quick and easy ritual for solitaries: on either side of a plant (flowering, if possible, or get an herb plant from the grocery store so it can have later use in your kitchen), place a black and white candle. Light the candles, cast your circle, and reflect on the balance of light and dark. Visualize all that you wish to create in your life, and envision it unfolding as the buds of a flower open up to reveal its center. Send out healing energy and light to those who need it, and offer thanks the Goddess for another season upon us. Close the circle, and celebrate with your own cakes and ale.
Some of the workings you can focus on during Ostara include openings and new beginnings. improving communication, fertility and abundance. Whatever you want to bring into your life, no matter what is going on in the world at the time, focus on gratitude, nature, the balance of light and dark, and what seeds you can plant, whether it be in your garden or in your life. Blessed Be, my friends! May the season bring you growth and light.