Beltane is a celebration of fertility and life which starts at the moon rise on May Day Eve – April 31 /May 1 (Northern Hemisphere) or October 31 / November 1 (Southern Hemisphere). All rituals revolve around the sacred union of masculine and feminine and the potential of bearing fruits! There are certainly many ways to explore Beltane; however, keeping in mind divine aspect of the festival and peoples’ reliance on the Wheel of the Year for agricultural purposed, I will focus my exploration on those areas. Though, I am pretty sure, spiritual relevance of this holiday will manifest itself here in some way.
In the months leading up to the Beltane, pagans celebrated gradual awakening of the Earth after the winter season. After the Spring Equinox, the Sun is gaining strength and the Earth is readying for the crop and pasturing season.
Beltane is a holiday of Union between the God and the Goddess, between masculine and feminine, between man and woman. The myth of Beltane says that the God and the Goddess have reached maturity. The God, stirred by the energies at work in nature, blossomed into manhood and now desires the Goddess. As She blossoms, His desire intensifies. They come together in Perfect Love and Perfect Trust to celebrate their union. Together they learn the secrets of the sexual and the sensual. It is through their union that all life begins.
Having read the books and articles, my perception is that pagans perceived humankind as being in touch with the universal divinity. Interpreting Beltane in such manner, I understand that it honours the sacred union of Divine Masculine and Divine Feminine which people also strive to achieve deep within. Seeing Beltane as the season of maturing life and deep found love, it was the perfect time to exchange vows and hold pagan marriages. People were transformed by desire and would open to the mystery of another. As someone said, “we die to our separate selves and in surrendering of those boundaries we become something more than ourselves”.
Thanks for reading,