By Laura Larriva
First Summer – May Day/Beltane
With the waxing of warmth and light in the northern hemisphere, all of Nature begins to dance, and to play, and to spread its reach. The flowers are blooming, the bees buzzing, the birds singing, the land is still green and moist. It is a beautiful time, characterized by pleasant evenings, a wealth of color and abundant activity. The first of May has been marked by people living close to the earth for a very long time. Known as “First Summer” or Beltane (Bright Fire) in Gaelic, we celebrate the gift of life and renewal within and without.
The history of of this seasonal threshold in the pan-european tradition reaches back to Gaelic and Celtic origins in Ireland, Scotland and Britain where it was celebrated as a fertility and fire festival.
According to some Druidic accounts, all the hearth fires and candles in the homes would be doused, then two huge bonfires were lit. The herds of cattle were driven between them on their way to the summer pastures with incantations and prayers.
People too would leap over the bonfire flames making prayers and vows, sometimes two by two, and then would celebrate the very essence of life through love making and play. Fertility and pleasure were the central themes, related to the red thread of continuity, the power of life to endure, and the central erotic vitality that courses through all things.
Beltane, along with Samhain (Halloween in the fall), were two of the most important holy days for many Gaelic/Celtic peoples. Directly across from each other on the wheel, they symbolized the polarity of the life and death force energies, present in all things and tied together.
First Summer Within
This season invites us to explore the erotic aspect of our lives as one of the least understood dimensions of human experience today. In broad strokes the erotic within each of us is the very essence of vitality and power. – it is life force energy; the red thread of passion that underlies everything. Our erotic energy has the power to transform, create, to enlighten, and to experience more of our world and ourselves in it.
This seasonal energy is the lure of becoming that takes you to a place that is simultaneously edgy and a bit terrifying and enlivening, energizing and fulfilling – the front line of our lives. It is paradoxical and full and lives on a spectrum of life and death, known and unknown. Tracking the erotic invites us to learn how challenge and obstacle, and change can be delicious, pleasurable and fulfilling experiences to lean into, and how sensuality, desire, and power call us into creation.
Unveiling the erotic in our lives is about unveiling your own potential for flourishing. In this way it’s both connected to, and uncoupled from sex. It is a whole systems concept – its about unveiling life force in every life arena, in all facets of you inner and outer. We assume that the more we free up the pulse of life, the more wildly, authentically and turned-on we live. The more effective and magnetic we become. The more potent.
This season mirrors the current of energy that runs through our lives that gives rise to our deep longings, our allurements, our desires and our passions. May you be filled with vitality!
Astrological Marker : Sun at 15 degrees Taurus
By Another Name : Beltain/Beltane or “Bright Fire” (Gaelic)
Holidays Celebrated Near this Time : May Day
Seasonal : Light is waxing, summer begins
Inner Alignment : Vitality, sexuality, life force energy, sacred union
Element : Earth
Archetypes : The Lovers, The Trickster, The Warrior, The Creator
Sexuality/Desire • Pleasure
Sip a little more from Laura’s magic:
➵ Read This If You Call Yourself A Wild Woman
➵ 5 Signs The Earth Is Singing Through You
For more self-study, The Urban Howl recommends Llewellyn’s 2016 Moon Sign Book: Conscious Living by the Cycles of the Moon (Llewellyn’s Moon Sign Books).
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