For her Mother’s Day Ziraat Retreat in Ashville, NC, Darvesha asked me to make an ending ritual as a seal on our intentions to reciprocate with Earth, and as an empowerment for the participants to go forth to celebrate the Divine Mother and Mother Earth. She also asked me to write about the creation of a ceremony, so here’s the story:
Synchronistically, five minutes before we left for Ashville a package of flowers from our daughter arrived on our doorstep with a note saying: “Happy Mother’s Day . . . Thought I’d send them a little early so you can enjoy them all weekend.” She didn’t know we were going out of town! So, we took the flowers with us to grace the main Altar. Quoting Meister Eckhart, “We are all called to be Mothers of God,” I offered the bouquet to bless the Mother in each of us.
I waited to create Sunday’s ritual until hearing what Darvesha taught during the Friday and Saturday sessions. Amidst many fine teachings she said, “I personally see my role as encouraging you to do daily practices in Nature and discern how to reciprocate with Gaia.” She called Gaia, “She Who Feeds Us.” She encouraged us to be erotic, passionate, connected. She said we practice Fanah, meaning self-effacing, so God can display through us. “That’s the payoff of Fanah-if we clear ourselves of ourselves the whole universe comes through for us.” She said the foundation of Shamanism is that we can channel the energy of the universe when we get out of the way. In Celtic Shamanism the energy and intelligence is flowing through us all the time. We can open the boundaries to allow it all to flow through. We can let the Elements help us and practice balancing each of the Elements within us: Not too much earth, or we may easily get stuck. Not too little earth, or we won’t be grounded in action. We can practice getting in touch with the Elemental presence of everything; with the Dralas, the nature spirits. We can practice direct presence through our senses to what is here before us. When we water plants we can be conscious of bestowing a blessing, offering something back to nature. Nurturing of life is what we offer back. We can harvest and eat food as gift, as sacrament. Eating mindfully, with awareness, we sanctify life.
Inspired by her teachings, it seemed to me that our ceremony should include a ritual in which to open and bless our sacred Senses with the Elements. It should provide an opportunity to get in touch with, share, and bless our intentions. It should include an empowerment to go forth with support in our work for Mother Gaia.
Mother’s Day Ceremony
Circling past the dance altar, pick up the earth object you brought, process along the grass, down into the sunken courtyard, stopping at the threshold before proceeding in, placing your object on the ceremony altar, thus creating our Elements Altar together.
Welcome to our ceremony to bless the Mother and to bless our work for Her.
Opening Directions to create sacred space, temple, heiau, and orient ourselves.
Blessed be the light arising in the East, which gives us hope and inspiration.
Blessed be the light sustaining in the South, which gives us warmth and passion.
Blessed be the light descending in the West, which washes us with pure compassion.
Blessed be the light returning in the North, the guiding stars bringing us wisdom.
Center: In the name of the starry beings of the heights, the shining ones of the deep earth, and all the clan of the green world, one circle of Being, in light reborn.
“This is my body, a temple divine.
This is my heart, an altar divine.
This is my mind, an offering divine.”
Ziraat Invocation, facing the Directions.
Nayaz Prayer, including earth and water.
Elements Blessing as Communion, as Sacrament to open our senses. We invite each of us to get in touch with where we are now in our own work for Earth/Spirit and how we want to continue. Standing in this circle and holding our Intentions in our Hearts, we pass these Elements to bless each other, offering:
“Gratitude to pure and honored Air, which gives us breath and sense of smell. Holding this bowl of roses for each other we say, Breathe in the Fragrance of the Mother to refresh you.
Gratitude to pure and honored Fire, which gives us passion and sense of sight. Holding this candle for each other we say, See the light which guides our way to our Devotion to the Mother.
Gratitude to pure and honored Water, which gives us purity and sense of touch. Holding this bowl of Healing Waters from Brigid’s Well in Ireland, St. Winifred’s Well in Wales, and the Blood Well of the Divine Feminine in Glastonbury for each other we say, Feel the compassion of the Mother wash over you.
Gratitude to pure and honored Earth, which gives us nourishment and our sense of taste. Holding this bowl of blueberries and chocolate for each other we say, Taste and be nourished by the Food of the Mother in your work for Her.
Gratitude to pure and honored Ether, which gives us the subtle energies of connection to the beings around us through vibrations and sound. Ringing this bell for each other we say, Listen to the Rhythms and Resonances of Pachamama.”
Sharing: Inviting those who want to to voice our intentions and be witnessed, supported in our work, one woman said she was finishing her memoir called All I Ask of You, so I we sang All I ask of You . . . to her. She said, “Again, please!”
Offering: Singing Mother Hildegard’s We are greening with life. We bear our fruit for all of creation . . .
Reading Navaho Chant, in Earth Prayers
Happily may I walk
Happily, with abundant dark clouds, may I walk.
Happily, with abundant showers, may I walk.
Happily, with abundant plants, may I walk.
Happily, on a trail of pollen, may I walk.
Happily may I walk.
Being as it used to be long ago, may I walk.
May it be beautiful before me.
May it be beautiful behind me.
May it be beautiful below me.
May it be beautiful above me.
May it be beautiful all around me.
In beauty it is finished.
In beauty it is finished.