Over the years I have changed my attitude to rituals. However, the British especially have their own little everyday rituals like the way you make a cup of tea or whether the jam or cream goes on the scone first. If we look at what we do each day then we can see just how much of what we do is part of a ritual.
I used to stand on the door step each morning and welcome in the day, asking for blessings from Father Sky, Mother Earth and the four quarters of North, South, East and West. Nowadays I tend to stand on the doorstep and connect without words to the sky, earth and the directions. I find words are not needed. This Imbolc for example, I started to see the bulbs shooting up in the ground and noticed some early spring flowers and new buds on the trees. I acknowledged this as the coming of Spring, of Imbolc and felt I did not really need a formal ritual or ceremony to acknowledge this.
My connection with the natural world around me is so strong and deep that words are not needed. I don’t set up and altar as what I can see outside in my garden is my altar all year. I have never really enjoyed the kind of ritual where a theatrical performance comes first. I have been to some of these and found much of the words said are just parts said without any deep feeling or meaning. To me, if you perform a ritual then what you do and say must have meaning for you and be sincere. So I wonder what your thoughts are on this? Imbolc Blessings to you all.
I know many people who shudder at the word ‘ritual’. They see it as something bad and horrible. But our daily life is full of rituals. Making a pot of tea is a ritual and pouring it into a cup is even more so. Do you warm the pot first? Do you add milk to your cup before or after? Have a look at the things you do each day and see how many are rituals. You may be surprised.
But let’s look at some kind of rituals. One I do each morning when I get up is open the door (I only have one door to the outside) and let the stale air out and new fresh air in. I stand there quietly for a few minutes and breath in the morning air. I look at the sky, the birds flying around and listen to them chirping and singing. It is quiet and I can hear traffic on the bypass. It is a few moments of stillness before I start my day and it is special for me to do this. While I am doing this I am also connecting to the elements around me and becoming a part of them. This morning it was raining gently and I let the rain fall on my face. It is a daily ritual but full of meaning and mindfulness.
While eating my breakfast I sit facing the window so I can see the sky and the birds on the feeders. As I do this every day then it becomes another ritual. For the druid rituals for celebrating the seasons and festivals I prefer to use the word celebration as that is what it is. To me it only becomes a ritual if you do the same things each time and I do not do this as I prefer to work spontaneously. A final word here; writing my blog on a Sunday morning is another ritual. I spend time thinking about my theme for the blog, find a photo to add and then write straight from my heart.
I’d love to read your thoughts on ritual and what it means to you.
I love the early mornings. It is often still and peaceful and it is so uplifting to watch the sun rise. This morning was such a morning, still, peaceful and easy to connect with all that is.
I have a morning ritual and have done this ritual in different forms for many years. Some days I just welcome the new day, another time I welcome the sun and the warmth and light it brings. On wet days I give thanks for the rain as it is generally needed to water the earth and enable the plants to grow. Other times I may welcome each direction in turn thanking them for the gifts they bring. Another way I sometimes use is to thank Mother Earth and Father Sky and offer them tobacco. Whatever I do, my day seems brighter and I am more able to cope with whatever life throws at me. The short time of stillness and connection stays with me throughout the day.
Do you have morning rituals? If so, what do you do? If not, why not try it and see if it makes any changes to your life. Here are the trees this morning with the early morning sun shining on them.