Spring Equinox 2009 – Anthesphoria, A Hellenic Spring Equinox

The Festival of the Flowers
A Hellenic Spring Equinox

“Before we begin, let us expel that which stands to distract us and block our purposes.”
“Outdwellers!Titans who stood against Zeus! Spirits of Khaos and Discord! Those who
would detract from this rite, those with ill intent in their hearts, I ask you now to accept
this token. I give freely to you that you harm none on this day. Accept this! And leave us
in peace to do our work. (Offer apple)
“AsweappeasetheOutdwellers,so must we also leave behind the thoughts of the
mundane world that stand to distract us from our work today. Breathe deeply. As you
exhale, push out the stress and negativity that may have built during your day. Bard,
Opening statements:
“Greetingstoallgatheredhere!We have come to honor the Theoi in the ways of Old.
Today, we celebrate Anthesphoria, the Festival of the Flowers. It is now that we
welcome Persephone back from the Underworld and into the Middleworld above. As
she walks among us, flowers fall from her feet, and the tears of joy from her Holy
Mother, Demeter, bring the sleeping greenery to full wakefulness. Spring is come! Let
us rejoice in the light half of the year!
Honoring the Hearth and the Earth
“Fiery Hestia, Sacred Hearth Flame! Hear us this day! To you, O virginal Goddess, the
center of our homes and our communities, we offer always the first sacrifice. Hestia!
Accept our Offering!
“Gaia, Mother Earth, from whose womb all creation has sprung forth! Creator and
sustainer of all, Divine Mother, we honor you. Earth Mother, accept our offering!”
“I call on Apollo, God of Music and Inspiration, and the Muses, who taught him well, to
guide our voices during this rite. May they carry the praise of our hearts to the gods
with words that are worthy of their ears. Apollo, grant us divine
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“Letusnow establish our sacredcenter”
Place Omphalos stone at the base of the tree.
Cosmos. [Anoint stone]
“LikethesacredstoneatDelphi,letthisstonebetheplacewhereZeus’eaglesmeet to
mark the center of the world, and through this sacred center, let the World Tree grow,
plunging deep into the Earth to touch the Sacred Waters below and reaching through
theskytoembracetheSacredFiresabove.”–Emerald Vaughn
“ThePortalSong”-Ian Corrigan
Eos Meditation: Grove Attunement
Visualization and Opening of the Gates:
around you. Push out the negative energy within you.
Above you, around you, below youandbeforeyou….allisdarkness.Nyx,theGoddessof
Night, has taken control of the world and all is consumed in her eternal blackness.,
You suddenly realize this blackness is no longer absolute. Images and shapes begin to
swirl before you, slowly becoming shadowy impressions of the world around you. You
see the faintest hint of a tree or a shrub. Looking around you, you realize that these
shapes are gaining definition; details are becoming more and more clear.
Dawn. Eos has awakened. As she stretches her rosy fingers across the sky, she gently
caresses Nyx toward to West, making the way clear for Helios in the East to begin his
frantic and fiery journey across the sky. This is our Gatekeeper. Eos, Liminal Goddess of
the Dawn, with the strength to coax back night itself and the very Sun at her heels.
Eos! Goddess of the Dawn! Bringer of light in the darkest of night! We honor you in the
Old ways. Accept our sacrifice and in return, join us! Add your powerful magic to ours
and aide us in opening the gates! Eos, Accept our Offering!
Eos! Below you stands the gate to the Lower Realm! Throw back the door to the
Underworld! May the Well open as a gate!
Liminal Being of the morning! Before you stands the gate of the Middleworld. May the
tree open as a gate!
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Holy Goddess of the Dawn! Above you stands the gate to the Upperworld, to the
Heavens where all the gods and goddesses are free to roam! May the fire open as a
Eos! May the Gates be open! Esto!
Calling the Kindred:
“Westand,now,inthepresenceofthegods.They hear our thoughts and intentions.
“Kindred,theChildren of the Earth have need of you. Come forth as you are called and
“ShiningOnes, Theoi, Gods and Goddesses on high! First Children of the Mother! We
honor you today.
To the Khthonioi who rule below,
to the Titans who stood with Zeus as allies,
to the Apotheothenai, Heroes among our Ancestors, promoted to Gods, and above all,
to the Mighty Olympians, be welcome in our midst.
Theoi! Accept our offering! (offer oil)
“NatureSpirits!NobleOnes!Guardiansand guides of this realm! Spirits of fur and
feather, of scale and skin, those who we see and those hidden from sight and unnamed,
hear us! Worldly Spirits! Spirits of Place! Beloved allies, we honor you. Nature Spirits!
Accept our offering! (offer bread/grains)
“BelovedAncestors!MightyDeadwhohavegonebefore!Honored Heroes!
Grandmothers and Grandfathers of blood! Ancestors of spirit, I call to you! Those of
Hearth and those of Heart, hear me now! Those who have stood where we stand,
passed to the other side and now hold the secrets of birth and death, we honor you.
Ancestors! Accept our offering!”(offercoins)
Offerings to the Kindred:
Deity of the Occasion:
[Insert story:Persephone’sGarden,aboutPersephone as she returns from the
Underworld: A story of two children who happen upon the Goddess when she returns
and are in awe tinged with fear because of her time with Hades. Lesson: Since our
ancestors are not to be feared, those Gods and Goddesses who choose to dwell with
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them are not to be feared, either. In return for caring for her garden, Persephone bids
the children make wreaths of flowers to bless the farm equipment thattheirFather’s
plots may prosper. Reward for piety and perseverance.]
“Persephone,Daughter of the Sky Father, Zeus and the Earth Goddess of Growing
Things, Demeter, Beloved Queen of the Underworld! The time is come for you to
resume your reign as Queen of the Spring! The world wept and all went cold and
barren in your time of absence. You return now, to your sacred gardens, reminding us
that loss is inevitable, but sorrow is temporary. As you walk upon the earth once more
and flowers fall from your feet, we are reminded that all things have cycles, life and
death and rebirth are the part of the world that is constant when nothing else is. The
time of rebirth has come!
“Furthermore,you teach us that when faced with a difficult situation we can either
‘perishinthepitsofHadesor become the Queen of the Underworld’for a time, rise
aboveourdifficultiesandturnourfacestothesunasallcircles‘round.Through your
strength to overcome hardships, you teach us the importance of making the best out
of difficult situations and finding the good around us. You remind us to be ever
vigilant in our tasks and to move forward without complaint. As a pomegranate seed
binds you to your station, so too are we bound to follow the Elder ways. Still, you
reward us for our piety and for our perseverance. Beloved Persephone, Mighty
Queen! Accept our offerings!Esto!”(offerdried flowers and wine)
Open up offering time for the folk.
Final Sacrifice:
“Wehavecomebeforeyouwithpraiseandofferings.Wehavegivenfreely of our
hands, of our spirits, and of our hearts! May our deeds and words be accepted.
Kindred, accept our sacrifice! Esto!”(offerwhiskey)
Return Flow
Is it the will of the Kin to receive the blessings from the Kindred?
It is!
Join me in drawing down that which is our due.
“The Power of the Kindred flows through this place
From below, from around, from above,
Let the power converge at the sacred center
With strength and wisdom and love.
Drawn down from above and up from below,
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In return for the offerings we make,
Pour forth your blessings into this cup
The folk here wish to partake!”-Emerald Vaughn
“Blessed Kindred! We have gathered and given freely, from our hearts and from our
hands. Having accepted our offerings, the bonds of Hospitality require that a gift is
due in return. You have promised (omen), and I call on you now to fulfill your promise.
Lift first pitcher.
“Shining Ones! Shower down your blessings; fill this cup with the bounty of
your wisdom and inspire our hearts. Fill this vessel from the Cup of Inspiration!
“Shining Ones! Give us the Waters! (Pour a portion into second pitcher.)
Shining Ones! Give us the Waters!
“Noble Ones! Infuse this cup with the light that shines forth and renews our spirits!
Grant us the blessings of the spring of renewal!
“Noble Ones! Give us the Waters! (Pour.)
Noble Ones! Give us the Waters!
“Mighty Ones! Pour forth your blessings of knowledge gained through your infinite
experience! May the waters in this pitcher be infused with the Waters from the Well
of Wisdom.
“Mighty Ones! Give us the Waters! (Pour.)
Mighty Ones! Give us the Waters!
Put down first pitcher.
“Children of Earth! This cup is filled with the blessings of the Kindred!
Lift the second pitcher above you.
“Behold! The Waters of Life!
“As the cup of blessings is shared, please hold your portion and take a moment to
internalize the omens. (List omens) What do these mean to you? Once all have been
served, we shall partake as one.”
Wait for the waters to be distributed.
Chant: Blessings, flow through us, sustain us, renew us. Behold! The waters of life! –
Song: Earth Mother, Blossom Lifter
“Children of Earth! You hold before you the Cup of Inspiration, infused with the
Blessings of the Kindred! Hold high your glasses!
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May all assembled here be granted the blessings promised to us, each in his or her
own way, and as we drink, may the blessings flow through us and spill out into the
rest of our lives, that all whom we meet will know we are blessed.
Workings: Wreaths to bless the tools of the garden.
above the ground, greeting our Lady of the Spring as she passes by. These first flowers
awakened by the magic of the Goddess are now used to spread that magic to the
bless the hands that hold them.
“Persephone, may the gardens touched by these instruments that tend the Earth be
ever fruitful, healthy and hearty. May the plants grow large, the blooms grow larger
and the fruits droop to the roots. All things that grow are blessed by your touch.
Persephone, grantusplentythisgrowingseason.Esto!”
Thanking the Kindred:
“Persephone!We honor you. Your return allows the Earth to Fruit once more, through
the hand of your blessed Mother, Demeter. May your continued and growing
presence in our realm be ever on our hearts and minds as it is evident all around us.
Persephone, Returned Maiden of the Springtime! Hail and farewell!”
we thank you. We are grateful for your knowledge and learn from your experiences.
Thank you. Hail and farewell!”
“NatureSpirits!NobleOnes,Allies, Spirits of Place. We are grateful for your guidance,
and we thank you. Hail and farewell!”
“Theoi!ShiningOnes!Your intervention has saved many of us more than once, and we
thank you, for your guidance and your wisdom, for your mercy and your strength. We
thank you. Hail and farewell!”
Closing the Gates:
“Eos, we honor you, and we thank you for your continued awakenings, for illuminating
our paths when they are the most dark, and for the many things you do that are unseen.
We ask you to join your magic with ours once more this day and close these gates,
leaving behind the imprint of the work we have done today.”
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Close the gates
Remove Omphalos
Thanking the Deity of Inspiration
“Apollo!Muses! Our words have been true and our hearts have been touched. For your
gifts of Divine Inspiration and Eloquence, we honor and thank you. HailandFarewell!”
Thanking the Earth Mother
when we die, you assume us back into your body. We honor and praise you. Earth
Mother, we thank you. Hail and farewell!”
Thanking Hestia
and last born of your Mother, so do we honor you first and last. Hestia, we thank you.
Hail and Farewell!
“Wehavehonoredthegods,andwehavedone it well. This rite is ended! Esto!


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Open Rite -Outdwellers: Skarlett
Opening Statements -Hestia: Anna -Gaia: Shawneen -Apollo: Irisa
Omphalos -Portal Song -Attunement: Mike -Gates: Mike
Calling the Kindred -Gods: Seamus -Nature: Paul -Ancestors: Anna
Open offering to folk
DotO -Persephone’s Garden
Open offering to the folk
Final Sacrifice -Omen: Seamus
Return Flow
Working: Bless the Tools