Category: Celtic Moon Months


The Celtic calendar begins with the month of the Birch Moon, a time of new beginnings and making plans for the future.

birch moon

The first of the 13 months of the Celtic calendar is the month of the Birch Moon.  It begins just after Yuletide and runs through most of January.

Staring just after the Winter Solstice – the shortest day of the year – the month of the Birch Moon marks the period of the year when the hours of daylight start to increase over the hours of darkness.  Its associated color is flame red; from this comes the red candles that we burn at Yuletide.

 

New Year’s Resolutions

The month of the Birch Moon falls into the “quiet time” during the bleakest period of winter.  None of the eight major Neopagan festivals occur in this month.  There is little to do but wait for warmer weather.

This month is therefore primarily a time of contemplations, of looking to the future and starting to make plans for the year ahead- hence the tradition of making New Year’s resolutions.

THE LADY OF THE WOODS

The silvery bark that covers the trunk of the birch tree resembles the silver of the moonlight, which it reflects at night giving it a magical look.

birch-wood-tree

“Tree Goddess”. Photo taken by Norse Witch

With its long, slender branches that stretch up to the sky, the birch symbolizes the female aspects of nature and is often known as “the Lady of the Woods.”  Growing up to 100 feet high, it has also been thought of as a ladder that shamans can climb to reach the gods.

 

BIRCH MOON MAGIC

The month of the Birch Moon is the ideal time to weave magic focusing on new beginnings and purification, or to cast spells for support, shielding and cleansing.

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“The Birch” by Margaret Walty

At the beginning of the year, concentrate on new beginnings.  Ask for general luck in whatever the coming year brings, and focus on what you want to achieve.

Resolution Blessing Spell

The birch is the first tree to grow back after a forest has been cut down or razed, reinforcing its association with new beginnings.  It is a tree of extreme hardiness, thriving in places where the oak cannot.  When you make a New Year’s resolution, increase your chances of sticking to our guns by performing this blessing spell.

You Will Need:

  • Red candle
  • Red ribbon
  • Birch wand
  • Frankincense, rose, and benzoin essential oil

resolution spell1. Go for a walk in your local park and collect a birch twig no more than 12 inches long.  As birch is a very common tree, you should be able to find one easily, even in urban areas and parks.

2. Mix a few drops of rose frankincense and benzoin essential oil into the palm of your hand and rub the mixture into a red candle.

3. Light the candle, and stand in front of it for a few moments visualizing your resolution.  If you are planning to learn to play guitar, for instance, visualize ourself happily strumming your favorite song.  You may want to state your intent aloud, saying, “I will learn to play guitar.”

4. Holding your birch twig at one end, pass it through the candle’s flame.  Then turn around, clockwise, holding the twig in front of you to draw a circle around yourself.

5. Repeat the incantation, “I manifest new chances for good fortune, clarity and insight.  I open myself to new experience and allow change to manifest in my life.”

6. Now sit down for a few minutes and quietly contemplate your wish.  When you have finished, blow out the candle.

Purification and Cleansing

purificationThe silver color of the birch’s bark is associated with purity and cleansing.  Criminals and naughty schoolboys were often beaten with birch twigs – “birched” – in order to purify them and drive out any evil influences.

This is a good time to cleanse your mind of negative thoughts and attitudes, such as anger and jealousy, or an addictive behavior, such as smoking.  A full Moon that calls within the month of the Birch Moon is called the Cold Moon; you can strengthen your intent by performing the following ritual at this time.

A Simple Cold Moon Ritual:

1. Light a white candle besides a small bowl of natural spring or rain water.

2. Stand over the water and pray for the strength to let go of your vice.

3. Write down your negative behavior nine times on a piece of paper.

4. Fold up the paper, place it inside a freezer bag, and pour in some of the prayer water.

5. Place the bag inside your icebox to “freeze” your bad habits – putting them behind your forever.

Birch Throughout the Year

birch year

  • Birch is used for purification, exorcism and protection.  A red ribbon tied to a birch twig will help ward off the evil eye.
  • Witches’ brooms are made of birch twigs tied around an ash branch with strips of willow.  The purifying birch sweeps away evil spirits, as well as dirt.
  • At Beltane (May Day), birch twigs are used to light the fires that signal the beginning of the new season.

 

 

 

 

Source:

“Enhancing Your Body, Mind and Spirit”, 21 Nature Magic, CARD  5.

 

Suggested Links:

Celticradio.net, “Celtic Zodiac: The Birch“.

The Goddess Tree, “Birch“.

Jaecap. People.tribe.net, “The Birch Tree“.

Spiritblogger.wordpress.com, “Spirit Message of the Day – Celtic Tree Month Birch – Strength“.

The 13th Lunar month of the Celtic calendar is Elder.  This tree marks a time of endings and beginnings.

The Elder Moon is the last month in the cycle of the 13 Celtic Moon months, and it indicates the renewal of energy and continuous journey of the soul toward greater happiness and understanding.  The Winter Solstice, the shortest day and longest night occurs during Elder Moon and is the chance to focus on your heart’s desire.

Annual Evaluation

The Elder Moon is time to bring a halt to habit-forming patterns that have restricted your growth, so that you may heal and move on.  Evaluate what you learned during the past year and give yourself time to work out what you want from life.  Perform spells that conclude the annual cycle and release the energy you invested in previous projects and endeavors, so that you may concentrate on conceiving your new dreams for the New Year.

TREE OF LIFE AND DEATH

“The Elder” by Margaret Walty

The elder tree’s ability to recover when damaged has made it a symbol of regeneration since ancient times, and for this reason it was used in burial rites in British long barrows, an ancient style of grave.  Due to its white flowers (life) and black berries (death), the tree is also sacred to the Mother Goddess who governs birth and death.

Protective Powers

Art by Oskar Klever

The wood is believed to have protective properties to because of the powerful Dryad spirit that lives within it.  When planted near a home, the tree will ward off intruders. The healing powers of the elder are also thought to cure insomnia (by placing elderberries in a spell bag under a pillow) and ensure health of unborn babies (when pregnant women kiss its bark).

 

ELDER MOON MAGIC

Use the powers of the elder tree to bring a sense of completion to the old year and feeling of renewal for the start of the next cycle.

Review the Year

Bring a sense of completion to your Celtic lunar year.

  • Review the last 13 Moons, writing down what you have learned from each.  Acknowledging your lessons helps you move on.
  • Areas of your life that are unfulfilled indicate stuck energy.  Hold quartz and direct love toward your current job, cramped apartment or credit card bill.  New opportunities will appear as if by magic.
  • Resolve difficult relationships by writing a letter to the soul of the person with whom you are in conflict – this helps to clear the way for change.  Then burn the letter.

Release Negativity

Upon reaching the end of the Celtic calendar, the Elder Moon month is the perfect time to release negative energies before entering the New Year, feeling renewed.

1. Dig a hole in the ground and say, “Mother Earth, I ask you to transform my pain into healing.”

2. Place a photo of yourself and a drawing, or written account, of any negative incidents into the hole.

3. Speak or shout your feelings into the hole.

4. When you feel ready, place an elder twig into the hole to represent the end of the cycle.

5. Fill in the hole and stamp the earth down three times saying, “I release the past, so let it be.”

 

Protection Charm

Use this charm to repel unwanted attention and harassment during the party season.

1. Collect together five tiny elder twigs, a white ribbon, a white candle and a strand of your hair.

2. Light the candle saying, “White light surround me, safe will I stay.”

3. Drip the wax onto one of the elder twigs and press your hair into it before it dries.

4. Surround the twig with the others, making a small magical bundle.

5. Secure it with the white ribbon saying, “As I will it, so let it be.”

6. Slip the protection charm into your party handbag and you’re ready to go.

 

Elder Tree Blessing

Use this blessing to heal an environment where there has been an argument, accident, illness or shock.

1. Gather together some elderberries and leaves.

2. Face the north and say, “I call upon the guardians of the earth to bless this place.”  Throw some elderberries and leaves towards the north.

3. Turn to the east and repeat the ritual, this time calling upon the guardians of air.

4. Turn to the south and repeat, calling upon the guardians of fire.

5. Finally, turn to the west and all upon the guardians of water.

6. End by randomly scattering the remaining leaves and release the energy.

 

 

 

Source:

“Enhancing Your Body, Mind and Spirit”, 21 Nature Magic, CARD  17.

 

Suggested Links:

Celticradio.net, “Celtic Zodiac: The Elder“.

The Goddess Tree, “Elder“.

Spiritblogger.wordpress.com, “Spirit Message of the Day – Creative Renewal Cycle“.

The Celtic Moon month of Reed prompts you to withdraw from the outer world, to look within yourself and reconnect with the past.

The celebration of Samhain, now known as Halloween, occurs during the Reed Moon.  To the Celts this month hailed the end of the year, a time to cull the livestock and to connect with ancestors.  All around the world festivals that honor the dead are celebrated.  During the Reed Moon, light a candle for loved ones who have died and you may receive a message from the spirit world.

Releasing Old Energy

The Reed Moon is a good time to use divination to gain insights into the year that has passed.  Perform spells that will release old energy, and burn symbols of illness and negativity in your bonfire on Halloween.  Remember the Celtic year does not begin until the Winter Solstice, so use this interval to dream not to make plans for the future.

THE HAUNTING SOUND OF REED

In the past, the reed was used to make swift-flying arrow shafts that slew both enemies and game.  In this way the plant was linked to the season of death and sacrifice, in which trees shed their leaves and the energy of nature became more introspective.  Many early musical instruments also used the reed to create a haunting sound that has been connected to rites for the dead and summoning the spirits.

Wind Instruments

Modern-day wind instruments have developed from the same principle used by original reed instruments, whereby a current of air is vibrated to produce a melodic sound.

Other traditional uses for reed include thatching.  Rooftops were thatched with reeds, and as the Celts withdrew into their homes for the winter they honored the plant that gave them shelter, making the reed a symbol of royalty and protection.

 

In the depth of winter, you need to recharge.  As you tend to stay indoors a lot during the cold season, this is a good time to both focus on and bless your home.

REED MOON MAGIC

Harness the power of the plant of protection and divination during this lunar month.  Using Reed magic can help you to connect with your ancestral roots or let go of the past.

Ancestor Spirit Altar

Use this ancestral ritual to connect with your ancestors and other loved ones who have crossed to the spirit world.

You Will Need:

  • Ancestral images
  • Three white candles
  • Flowers

You may choose to use a pentagram as the symbol of your spiritual tradition

First, place the ancestral images on a table, with flowers and candles.  Light each candle in turn and offer after each in the following order.

Candle one:

I honor the Ancestors of my Blood.

Candle two:

I honor the Ancestors of my Heart.

Candle three:

I honor the Ancestors of my Tradition.

Meditate, letting images peacefully drift through your mind, and ask for a sign that your loved ones are still with you in spirit.

 

Protection Charm

Use this reed charm to protect yourself from negativity.

You Will Need:

  • Freshly cut reed
  • A black ribbon

1.  Visualize yourself within a circle of white light.

2.  Tie a knot in a freshly cut reed, as it will be more flexible, and then say, “Royal Reed, plant of protection, keep me safe until the new year.”

3.  Suspend the knotted reed from the ceiling using the black ribbon.

4.  At Christmas, take it down and burn it.

 

Samhain Reed Spell

If you need help in letting go of something from your past, use a little reed magic at Samhain (October 31).

You Will Need:

  • Knife
  • Pen
  • Sea salt
  • Matches
  • Fireproof dish

1.  Go to a spot along the river bank where reeds grow tall and strong.

2.  Sprinkle sea salt on the surface of the water and say, “River of birth, river of death, I honor you.  Please accept this offering.”

3. Now choose a reed, cut it, and carefully draw a symbol, or write a word, to represent what you wish to release on the reed.

4.  Light the reed in the fireproof dish and, as it burns, visualize the old energy being transformed into light and disappearing.

5.  Once the reed has burned away, pour the ashes into the water and walk away, feeling fully cleansed of the past.

 

Traditional Magic

  • Try bringing some reed magic into your life with these traditional rituals:
  • Leap over a small bonfire to leave behind the old year.
  • Eat an apple at Samhain at midnight to dream of your spirit guide.
  • Carve out a turnip or pumpkin as a lantern of protection.
  • Bury an apple at a crossroads as an offering to the spirits of the dead.
  • Use the runes for divination or to gain insight into your current situation.

 

 

Source:

“Enhancing Your Body, Mind and Spirit”, 21 Nature Magic, CARD  16.

 

 

Suggested Link:

Celticradio.net, “Celtic Zodiac: The Reed“.

The Goddess Tree, “Reed“.

The lunar month of Ivy offers the opportunity to give thanks for life’s blessings and to prepare for a period of spiritual growth.

The Ivy Moon coincides with the end of the harvest season when successes and losses must be accounted for.  In ancient times, intoxicating ale was brewed from ivy and was used to induce visions of the battlefield.

The plant teaches us that restrictions are necessary to help us hone our skills.  During this month remember that your enemies are your teachers and that opposition is a blessing in disguise.  Focus on magic that strengthens your resolve.

 

Prepare for the Future

Spells that boost your sense of responsibility will make you ready for what lies ahead.  Be prepared to take the long-term view and accept and celebrate your life as it is  right now.  Trust that the Ivy Moon will prepare you to receive an answer to your prayers at exactly the right time.

Ivy/Gort card from “Voices of the Trees” by Mickie Mueller

As the winter months draw in, you’ll need to improve your resilience and tenacity.  Spells for good health are advised at this time of year.

THE RITUAL OF THE “IVY GIRL”

Ivy grows in a spiral formation reminding us that each cycle of the seasons brings us closer to the center, to the spirit.  The last harvest sheaf to be cut in the village was once bound with ivy and called the “Ivy girl.”  This was given to the farmer whose harvest was last, as a reminder of his responsibility to the spirits of the land.

 

Ivy Mythology

Ivy is ruled by the planet Saturn and is often linked with horned gods such as Pan and Dionysus, and as such is a plant of protection, sexuality, property and faith.  Ivy was also believed to protect from alcohol intoxication.  For this reason, intertwined vines of grape and ivy, representing balance, were depicted in ancient images of Dionysus.

 

IVY MOON MAGIC

You can use the month of the Ivy Moon for spells and rituals for protection, or harness its energy to make charms that will strengthen resolve and help you face challenges.

House Protection Spell

Utilize the magic of ivy to protect your home from negative influences.

You Will Need:

  • A black candle
  • Lots of ivy stems

1. Light the candle and say, “I call upon the spirits of this place, come in peace.”

2. Make a circle of ivy stems on the floor and step into the circle.

3. Turn to the north and recite, “Spirits of the Earth protect me.”

4. To the east say, “Spirits of the air protect me.”

5. To the south say, “Spirits of fire protect me.”

6. To the west say, “Spirits of water protect me.”

7. Place the stems that formed your circle at the boundaries of your property.

 

Facing Challenges

Performing this ritual during the Ivy Moon will help you to learn from difficult circumstances and move on.  To perform this ritual you will need:

  • A piece of paper
  • A pen
  • A white candle
  • A fire-proof dish

1. Write a list of the troubles that you are experiencing.

2. Next to each one write what you have gained from it, for example “It made me stronger.”

3. Light the candle saying, “This flame represents my faith in the universe.  I give thanks for the lessons I have learned.”

4. Burn the paper and feel yourself grow stronger.

 

Women’s Ivy Charms

Ivy is a feminine plant and it is particularly lucky for women.  Use the following ivy charms all year round to utilize ivy’s powerful magical properties.

  • Brides who carry or wear ivy will have a long, committed and prosperous marriage.  Sew an ivy leaf into a small pocket of white linen, and give this to a bride to slip into the hem of her wedding dress for luck.
  • To guard against accidents while driving, carefully secure an ivy leaf on your car dashboard.
  • Grow ivy vines around the front door of your house to prevent negativity from entering your home.

 

Ivy Spell Bags

Use the magic of ivy to strengthen your willpower.

Ivy leaves, ginger and Echinacea placed in a yellow spell bag will guard against addictive behavior.

Ivy leaves, chicory, sea salt and sage in a navy blue bag will guard against overspending.

A charm of ivy leaves, hawthorn leaves, and red chili seeds placed in a white spell bag will help to keep you faithful to your lover.

Placing ivy leaves, lily petals and lilac flowers in a blue spell bag will prevent you from returning to a destructive relationship.

 

 

 

Source:

“Enhancing Your Body, Mind and Spirit”, 21 Nature Magic, CARD  15.

The lunar month of the Vine offers the opportunity to bring your plans to fruition the winter begins.

The Autumn Equinox, when night and day are of equal length, occurs during the month of the Vine Moon.  It helps you realign your energy to prepare for the dark half of the year.  The month of the Vine Moon is a time to value input from others and any networks that are made may prove useful in the future.

 

Time to Consolidate

Focus on magic that resolves; cast a peace spell to end an argument or use prosperity magic to help you settle bills and pay off existing debts.  Magic must be balanced with action now, so use nature’s last burst of energy, visible in the vibrant fall colors, to inspire you to complete projects that you started earlier in the year.

Invest in your health during this month by eating foods packed with vitamin C to stave off colds as the weather declines, and boost your energy levels with herbal drinks.

 

 

FERTILITY AND CONCENTRATION

Jen Delyth ‘Celtic Tree of Life’

The vine is the only plant in the Celtic Tree Calendar not native to northern climes, although it’s  featured in much Bronze Age art.  It was cultivated by migrants from southern Europe.  The name vine comes from the word “viere,” meaning “to twist.”  This refers to the Druidic concept of spiritual development.

 

Fruits of the Vine

In the colder north, the vine was substituted with blackberries.  Both are used in wine, in money spells and are linked to fairies.  Pictures of grapevines were painted onto garden walls in ancient Rome to ensure the fertility of the household.

Eating grapes and blackberries is a magical remedy that aids memory and concentration.

 

 

VINE MOON MAGIC

Use magic during the month of the Vine Moon to restore peace to troubled relationships and to bring prosperity and fertility into your life.

Fall Magic

Try the following charms, remedies and spells to stay in tune with the magical powers of the season.

  • Catch a falling leaf and make a wish.
  • Place a  grapeseed in a glass of red wine and drink on the night of the full moon to attract riches.

Equinox Peace Spell

Use this spell to bring to a troubled relationship or to help heal any dispute.

You Will Need:

  • A white candle
  • A white ribbon
  • Pen and paper

1.  Hold the candle and say, “I dedicate this candle to peace.”

2. Write a list of the grievances that caused the conflict.

3. Light the candle and focus on sending love to the other party.

4. Burn the list in the flame saying, “For the sake of peace, I let it go.”

5. Light the candle for a few moments each night and focus on peace.

6. Tie the ribbon to a bramble or vine.  When the leaves have all fallen, peace will be restored.

Fertility Charm

Use this ancient spell to help you to be fruitful at this time of the year

1. Place a bunch of grapes in a bowl in your bedroom (or office if it’s a project not a baby you’re delivering!).

2. Next say, “Spirit of Vine, I open myself to your powers.”

3. Take some time to collect your thoughts and then make your wish.

4. Finish the charm by eating a grape and saying, “So let it be.”

Prosperity Pie

Use this prosperity pie recipe to bring financial fortune into your life.

You Will Need:

  • Pastry
  • Sugar
  • Blackberries
  • Pie dish
  • Spring water

1. Gather a basket of blackberries, leaving one of your hairs on the vine as an offering of thanks.

2. Wash the fruit in spring water, saying, “Water of life, take my strife.”

3. Roll out the pastry and visualize the prosperous life you desire.  Line the pie dish with a sheet of pastry.

4. Put the fruit into the pie dish, add sugar, and say, “Life grow sweet.” Try to imagine all golden light entering the fruit mix.

5. Top the pie with more pastry and decorate with vine patterns, saying, “The spell is complete.”

6. Bake in a moderate oven for 35 minutes and share with friends.

 

 

 

Source:

“Enhancing Your Body, Mind and Spirit”, 21 Nature Magic, CARD  14.

 

Make the most of this month to open your mind and exercise your intellect with the learned power of the Hazel Moon.

This is the best time of year to focus on gaining wisdom and absorbing knowledge.  Cast spells to heighten your senses and concentration.

The Celtic name for the hazel tree is “coll” meaning “nine”, and the Hazel Moon is the ninth month of the Celtic Tree Calendar.  A myth tells how nine nuts of wisdom fell from the hazel tree into a river where a magical salmon ate them.  The salmon then became a prized catch, gifted with shape-shifting powers and infinite wisdom.

A Time for Learning

The Hazel Moon offers you an opportunity to connect with your inner reserves of wisdom and intuition.  Study of all kinds is blessed during the Hazel Moon, so magic that uses ancient knowledge is most effective now.

This is also an excellent time to learn to read Tarot Cards or Runes because lunar energy will enhance your memory and psychic powers.  Maintain an optimistic approach and follow your enthusiasm.

 

PROTECTION AND RENEWAL

Rods made from the wood of the hazel tree have been used for diving water and earth energies.  The wood is pliant and supple and is immediately responsive to subtle energy vibrations and environmental changes.

Fertility Charm

As well as being an excellent source 0f protein, hazelnuts have long been used as a magical fertility charm.  Carry one with you if you wish to conceive or collect a small bag of nuts as a gift for a bride.

Good Fortune

Hazelnuts are also a symbol of good luck; if you find two in the same shell, eat one and throw the other over your left shoulder to make your wish come true.

HAZEL MOON MAGIC

You can bring the magical powers of the hazel tree to your magic.  Use this time to inspire your inner creativity and wisdom to ground yourself in nature.

Hazel Spells

You can use the qualities of hazel in a variety of ways in your magic working.

  • Make an all-purpose magical wand from a straight twig of hazel wood the length of your forearm.  Charge under the full Moon.
  • Draw a circle around your bed with a hazel stick to keep nightmares away.
  • Eat a feast of salmon and hazelnuts before an exam to heighten your powers of concentration and boost your memory.

Meditation

Practicing this meditation will help you to move through creative blocks, get inner guidance and develop your intuition.

  • Approach a hazel tree from the north.  When you are within the circumference of its branches, introduce yourself and ask permission to come closer.
  • If if feels right to proceed, circle the truck clockwise.
  • Try to sense the spirit of the tree and open your heart.
  • Sit with your back against the trunk and breathe deeply.  Empty your mind and try to attune to the tree’s energy.

Meditate outside under a hazel to draw upon the tree’s creative energy and open your mind to new possibilities.

 

 

Hazel Energy In Your Life

Bring the creativity and inspiration of the Hazel Moon into your life, both at work and at home.

1. Enroll in an evening class.  Now is an auspicious time to learn a new skill – try painting, learning a language or dance.

2. Keep a journal.  Just writing down your wishes and experiences will help you tune into your inner wisdom.

3. Go outside at night and look at the Moon.  Staying connected to nature will bring powerful insights and help you remain grounded.

4. Feed your mind: buy a book of inspiring quotes and read one each day to stimulate your intellect and sharpen your thinking.

 

Making A Diving Rod

You can use the magical powers of the hazel tree to make your own diving rod.

1. Cut a forked twig, less than a yard in length.

2. Give thanks to the tree by pouring nourishing water onto its roots.

3. Pass your rod through incense smoke and state your intention to learn the mysteries of nature.

4. Hold a fork in each hand and pull them apart so that the twig is under constant pressure.  As you walk over a water source or energy line, the rod will twitch in your hand.

5. Use your diving rod to explore the energies of sacred sites, old buildings and even your own home.

 

 

 

Source:

“Enhancing Your Body, Mind and Spirit”, 21 Nature Magic, CARD  13.

 

Suggested Link:

The Goddess Tree, “Hazel“.

The Celtic lunar month of Holly is the perfect time to celebrate your achievements and to focus on your future.

As the days shorten after summer solstice and the Moon grows in power, focus on putting bad situations behind you.

The eighth Celtic Moon month ushers in the shortening of days.  The power of the Sun is transferred to Earth, highlighting our practical needs and desires.  The Celtic fire festival of Lammas begins the harvest on August 1, so the month of the Holly Moon is a time to give thanks for the good things in your life.  Focus on your own “harvest” during the month of Holly – on what you wish to achieve and why.

Share Your Successes

Traditionally, the first gain harvested was baked into a loaf that represented the spirit of the crop, or “John Barleycorn” as it is called in England.  This bread was shared in a ceremony to ensure the wealth of community.

Use this month to celebrate your successes with family and friends and to consider sharing your good fortune with others.

 

PROTECTION AND RENEWAL

The holly is magically imbued with powers of protection.  In England, it was believed to protect against witchcraft and to guard homes against being struck by lightning.  Its evergreen leaves symbolize renewal and recovery during the dark half of the year and ward against envy and the misuse of power.

Restoration

The planetary rule of holly is Mars, which bestows upon the tree the ability to restore direction in your life, to rebalance and align energy, and to help you gain a sense of purpose.

In Pagan tradition, men carry sachets of holly leaves and berries, which will enhance their masculinity due to the tree’s restorative and energizing powers.

 

HOLLY MOON MAGIC

Use the magical blessings of the Holly Moon to celebrate and share the good things in your life and to increase your future fortune and success.

 Holly Harvest Loaf

During the Holly Month, invite the blessings of John Barelycron into your home by baking your own magical harvest loaf.  Simply follow the steps below:

1. Prepare some bread dough from flour, yeast, oil, honey, water and salt, and leave it to rise in a warm place for an hour.

2. Sprinkle some seeds and nuts on top of the dough to symbolize each blessing in your life, such as a comfortable home or supportive family.  Focus on these positive things as you knead the dough.

3. Shape the dough into a roundish loaf and place on a baking sheet.

4. Before baking it, place your hands on top of the dough and try to visualize golden light channeling into it.

5. Then say, “John Barleycorn, I give you thanks for all I have received.  Blessed be.”

6. When baked, bury the first slice of the loaf in the ground and whisper your wishes for the future.

7. Share the rest of the loaf with your friends and family and celebrate your abundance.

Holly Money Spell

One the full Moon, hold up some paper money to use the moonlight and recite the spell below.

“Lady Bright, Lady Bright,
Harvest abundant dreams tonight.
Three times three times three
Times three,
Prosperity return to me.”

Give the money to charity, and in return, the positive energy of holly will provide you with the funds you need over the coming months.

 

Time to Reenergize

The spirit of renewal is the month of the Holly Moon makes it an excellent time to reenergize your life.

  • Tune into the energies of your environment by eating-rich seasonal foods, preferably foods that are locally produced.
  • Use holly’s influence to rise to physical challenges and overhaul your personal fitness by joining a gym or taking up a martial art.

Harvest of Friends

Celebrate the harvest of the season and of the things that enrich your life during the Holly Moon by inviting friends to dinner.

Meals to Share

Ask everybody to bring a dish that they have prepared, and cover the table with a gold cloth to signify the wealth in your life.  For the centerpiece, place an arrangement of holly and wheat around a candle to represent the harvest spirit.

 

Harvest Blessings

Once your guests have arrived, give thanks to Mother Earth for the food that She has provided: “Let us eat that none shall know hunger.  Let us drink that none shall know thirst.”  During this meal, discuss what it is that you wish to harvest in your life.

 

 

 

Source:

“Enhancing Your Body, Mind and Spirit”, 21 Nature Magic, CARD  12.

 

Suggested Links:

The Goddess Tree, “Holly“.

At the height of the Midsummer, the Celtic Moon month of Oak is the perfect time to cast spells that encourage growth of all things.

The longest day of the year and the shortest nightfall is during the Oak Moon.  Known as the Summer Solstice, celebrations revolve around the power of the Sun at its zenith.  Folklore decrees, “He who sleeps on the shortest night shall sleep all year,” meaning that this is a time for action, not rest.

 

Magical Solar Energy

Magic at this time should concentrate on areas of life that fall under sunny auspices, such as health, success, prosperity and blessings.  Cast spells that inject solar energy into your projects by decorating your altar with gold and yellow.  Wear orange to boost your and stamina.

 

A TREE OF HEALING AND PEACE

Artwork by Eugene Damblans

The oak can be used as a haven for restoration.  When your spirit needs rest and comfort it can be soothed beneath the tree’s vast branches, and many sacred rituals were conducted in the shadow of an oak tree in Ancient Britain.  Meditating with your spine resting on the trunk of an oak tree soothes the nervous system and induces feelings of inner peace.

Brave Energy

Oak trees act as a conduit for the energy of endurance, fortitude and strength, offering a magical remedy for fear and despair.  They bring courage and protection from adversity.

Community Tree

The great size and age of the oak made it a symbol of the continuity of the community.  The water that collects in the dips of its branches were thought to be sacred and was used to cleanse and heal the body of negative energy.

 

OAK MOON MAGIC

Growth and fertility spells work best at this time of year.  Focus on building and consolidating your wisdom, endurance and security.

Feel energized by the power of the Sun and oak during this magical time of year.  Harness powerful solar energies for Oak Moon spells to bring cheer and success to your life. 

An Oak Vision Quest

Go on a vision quest during the Oak Moon and spend time in nature to receive messages from the oak tree.  For best results carry out this quest at the time of the Summer Solstice to enhance your insight with the energy of the Sun.  As you’ll need to spend a night outside for this quest, It’s best to do it with a friend.

“Oak Tree Meditation” by Laura Iverson

1. Go to a hilltop where both sunset and sunrise will be clearly visible.

2. Begin the quest at sunset, ending at sunrise.

3. As the Sun falls say a prayer to the great oak tree for guidance.

4. Look out for signs, such as animals that cross your path, or shooting stars.

5. Keep a record of your feelings and thoughts throughout the quest.

6. At sunrise give thanks for what you have received from the natural world.

Oak Moon Activities

As the Sun reaches the height of its power in the month of Oak, so then energy of the natural world – and your own spirits will soar.  Use this abundant feeling of vitality to attune yourself to the season and engage in some of these activities.

  • Dance outside in the Sun – it’s so energizing.
  • Go for a walk every day and enjoy the long, light summer evenings.
  • Keep an acorn form the fall and use it as a charm during the Oak Moon.
  • Have a gold-themed dinner to celebrate the Sun.
  • Bury a letter to the fairies under an oak tree, detailing your summer wishes.
  • Wear an oak leaf in your hair to bring you luck.
  • Kiss an oak tree to increase your attractiveness.

Solar Success Spell

Make a wish during the Oak Moon to imbue it with solar energy.  You’ll need to choose a wishing symbol, such as a coin for wealth.

You Will Need:

  • Gold candle
  • Symbol of your intention
  • Oak leaves

1. Hold the gold candle towards the sky and say, “Power of the Sun enter this candle.  May the flame of success burn brightly.”  Place the candle in a holder next to a spell symbol that represents your wish.

2. Surround the candle with oak leaves and say, “Mighty oak tree, lend me your strength.”

3. Light the candle and make your wish, then let the candle burn down – success will be yours.

A Purification Spell

Fallen Oak Leaf – air dried, pulverized and blessed ready to be used – for sale by Lady of the Moss on etsy.com.

You can burn oak leaves to purify the atmosphere and banish fear and doubt.

You Will Need:

  • Small bottle of wine
  • Basket
  • Pestle and mortar
  • Needle and thread
  • Fireproof bowl
  • Charcoal disk and matches

1. On the night after the full Moon go to an oak tree and pour a libation of wine onto the roots, asking the tree for its help.

2. Gather a basket of leaves and sew them together, then hang up the leaves to dry out for three days.

3. When the leaves have dried, carefully remove the thread and pound the leaves with a pestle and mortar into a kind of incense.  Light the charcoal in the fireproof dish.

4. When it glows red add the dried leaves to create a magical purification smoke.

Source:

“Enhancing Your Body, Mind and Spirit”, 21 Nature Magic, CARD  11.

 

 

Suggested Links:

The Goddess Tree, “Oak“.

Hawthorn Moon is a time to concentrate on your lover and on renewing the intimacy and understanding between you.

The Celtic Moon month of Hawthorn is the time for lovers to attend to matters of the heart, as the Celtic fire festival of Beltane heralds the start of summer.  Celebrated on the first full Moon after the May tree (hawthorn) has bloomed, cattle were driven between two fires to purify them before moving to the summer pastures.  Young people were adorned with blossom, and lovers lay in fields to empower their relationship and the crops with fertility and prosperity.

The Month of Fertility

Maypoles are an enduring symbol of the union of male and female energies; binding the ribbons signifies marriage and this is an auspicious time for a wedding.  Spells cast during this time aid intimacy and passion in an existing relationship.  Partnerships formed now will be lasting, and if your lover gives you May flowers it is said that he will always be true.

 

THREE FACES OF THE GODDESS

“Triple Goddess” by Briar

Adorned with flowers in spring, berries in fall and bare thorns in winter, the appearance of appearance of hawthorn has led to its association with the three faces of the Great Goddess: Maiden, (virginal white flowers of spring); Mother (rich, fertile red berries of autumn); and Crone (the cruel thorns of winter).

Bewitching

The hawthorn is closely linked to witches due to an ancient belief that it was created from witches who had been transformed into trees.  Magic performed beside the hawthorn during its month is though to be twice as powerful.  Hawthorn wood was traditionally used in amulets and charms.  The wood grows into many twisted patterns, thought to be the origin of the love knot charm.  As an amulet, the flowers were thought to ward off depression.  The Romans placed such amulets in cradles to protect babies from curses.

“Hawthorn” by Margaret Walty

HAWTHORN MOON MAGIC

Harness the power of hawthorn to find your soulmate or repair a relationship, or to spice up your life and reenergize your Heart Chakra.

Soul Mate Spell

Finding the right person to form a relationship with is not an easy task.  Fortunately, you can harness the magical forces of the Hawthorn Moon to help you find that special someone.

  • Beside a hawthorn tree place a red candle in the earth and light it saying, “Trust by flowers white, passion by berries red and protection of thorn.  May we grow together.”  Next, describe your ideal partner on a red piece of paper. Bury it, leaving the candle to burn (DO NOT LEAVE UNATTENDED!).  Decorate your door with May blossom and you will find true love in the next summer.

Healing Fire Spell

A time for lovers, Hawthorn Moon is a perfect time to heal a wounded relationship.  To mend quarrels, follow this ritual with your partner.

1. Both of you should have a paper bag into which you should blow.

2. Close your bags and face each other.

3. Kiss three times, then burn the bags, along with anything else you can find that symbolizes the rift between you, in a fireproof dish on the floor.

4. Hold hands and jump over the flames.  As you enter your new life together, know that there will be no looking back.

5. Feast together on red foods, for example fresh strawberries, in order to seal your pact.

Spice Up Your Life

Take advantage of the fertile, prosperous energies of the month of the Hawthorn Moon to help you spice up your life.

  • Wear fiery red underwear and place a sprig of May blossom in your hair to help you impress on that special date.
  • Young hawthorn leaves are tasty in salads and have detoxifying qualities to help you get into shape for the bikini season.
  • Wash in the morning dew after the new Moon to enhance your powers of attraction.
  • Decorate the dinner table with hawthorn flowers and bright red candles to create the setting for a magical meal for two.

 

Heart Meditation

This meditation will energize your Heart Chakra and help you open up to receive love during the auspicious month of Hawthorn.

1. Place a pink candle within a circle of May blossom and make sure that you are feeling totally comfortable.  To create the right atmosphere for your magic, you could dim the lights or play some soothing, ambient music.

2. Light the pink candle; focus your attention on the flame.

3. As you breathe in, imagine your heart being filled with soft pink light – one of the colors linked with the Heart Chakra.

4. Keep breathing in the pink light until it begins to fade, then slowly come back into the your awareness of the room.

 

 

Focus on keeping a barrier between yourself and things you don’t want.  Aim to push away old problems or lingering irritations.

Source:

“Enhancing Your Body, Mind and Spirit”, 21 Nature Magic, CARD  10.

 

Suggested Links:

The Goddess Tree, “Hawthorn“.

Healing is in the air during the Celtic Month of Willow, inviting you to open your heart and express your emotions.

During this time of April showers, the watery month of the Willow Moon teaches you to release pent-up emotions and experience your grief.  Tears are linked to healing, and as you express difficult and painful feelings, you are able to purge yourself of subconscious fears.  The Willow Moon offered a healing month to the Celts, who literally spring-cleaned themselves in steamy saunas, known as sweat lodges, in readiness for the Beltane festival at the start of May.

Watery Tree

This month is the perfect time to perform lunar magic and to let go of the past.  Cast spells to restore and nurture during the waxing Moon and to release problems during the waning Moon. Drinking more water will help you attune to the Willow Moon and so enable you to connect to the tree’s water magic.

HEALING AND BLESSING

The willow is imbued with the power of the Moon, and so it has always been particularly linked with witchcraft.  The traditional witches’ broom is bound with a willow branch, and lunar wands used specifically for Moon magic are made of willow wood.

A lovely handmade willow wand that can be purchased from the Eire Crescent shop on Etsy.

Broken Hearts

The willow’s close ties to the Moon and tides also connect it to affairs of the heart.  An old English tradition involved jilted lovers wearing a sprig of willow in their hats, which originated from an ancient willow charm to heal a broken heart.

Lucky Tree

It was also believed that knocking on willow wood would help to banish bad luck, and that the tree’s leaves and bark could be added to healing incense and sachets to further promote health.

Focus on bringing someone round to your way of thinking.  Attract love or a new job, or aim to make a good first impression.

WILLOW MOON MAGIC

The Willow Moon provides the perfect time to harness lunar power and energy for wishing spells, divination, healing and protection.

Willow Divination

Willow is a good tree for boosting your intuition because of its watery association with the Moon.  Try these traditional “willow ways” of using your extrasensory perception!

  • Throw your shoe into a willow tree on the new Moon.  If it gets stuck you will be married in the next 12 months, but if it falls you will remain single.  you can try this eight times, if you do not get the desired result the first time!
  • Sleep with willow leaves under your pillow on the night of the full Moon to have a psychic dream.
  • Burning the bark and leaves of willow with sandalwood, outside during the waning Moon, will help you see spirits.

Protection Spell

Planting a willow tree in your yard will banish bad luck from your home.

You Will Need:

  • Willow branch
  • Spring water
  • A clear quartz crystal
  • A lock of your hair

1. On the new Moon, dig a hole and place the quartz crystal inside it.

2. Call upon the blessing of the Earth Mother with the following incantation: “Earth to earth, in power and love grow.”

3. Add the lock of your hair, to bring your own energies to the spell, and say, “I welcome you.”

4. Place the willow branch in the hold and refill the earth around it.

5. Shower the covered earth with the spring water while saying this chant: “Water to water, in power and love grow.”

6. Water the buried branch each day until it is strong.

Moon Water Spell

This willow tree ritual should be performed outside and can be used to make a wish, or heart’s desire, some true.

1. At the time of the full Moon go to a shallow river or stream where willow trees grow.

2. Stand with your feet in the water and hold your arms up to the Moon.

3. Visualize  moonlight flooding your aura, filling your body with each breath.

4. Recite this incantation: “Lady Moon of wax and wane, bring my wish and take my pain.”

5. Perform an act of ritual purification by washing your hands in the water by the roots of the tree.

6. Focus on your wish and tie a knot with a string around a willow branch to seal it.  When your wish comes true, untie the knot.

“Esbat” by NinfeAde

Healing Sachet

Use this charm during the Willow Moon to support your recovery from past bereavement or heartbreak.

You Will Need:

  • White spell bag
  • Willow leaves
  • Willow bark
  • Moonstone crystal

1. Harvest the bark and the leaves on the full Moon, leaving a strand of hair as an offering of thanks.

2. Hold up the moonstone and say “Mother Moon, Fair thou art, may your radiance heal my heart.”

3. Place all the ingredients in the bag, tying three knots to seal it, saying, “By the power of three so let it be.”

 

 

Source:
“Enhancing Your Body, Mind and Spirit”, 21 Nature Magic, CARD  9.

 

 

Suggested Links:

The Blue Roebuck, “Willow“.

Celtic Radio, “Celtic Zodiac: The Willow“.

The Goddess Tree, “Willow“.

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