Thursday, August 31, 2017

The Most Magical Ways to Celebrate an Eclipse


       On August 21st, 2017 we experienced the first full eclipse that spanned the whole of North America and likely won't see another like it till about 2024. However, there's no need to worry, Solar and Lunar eclipses are fairly common throughout the world, and it's likely you can still appreciate the event of one occurring no matter where you live thanks to the internet.
Eclipses, both Lunar and Solar, have been a curiosity since ancient times when our ancestors were far more interested in what was happening above them than we may be today; and you can bet your button mushrooms that there are spells and rituals associated with the time in which an eclipse occurs. There's also so much lore associated with Gods and Goddesses who represented these celestial bodies and it would be a good idea to have some back-story on what these times meant to our ancestors and perhaps even your practice.



So let's start with Deities

Deities of the Sun:

  1. Lugh (Celtic): There wasn't much I could find on Lugh's relationship with an Eclipse. All I have found is that the Celts usually viewed an Eclipse as a good omen.
  2. Re (Ra, Egyptian): During a Solar Eclipse, Re is fighting off the Serpent Apep so he does not swallow the Sun. 
  3. Apollo (Greek): Many times, if the Gods saw fit to cover the Sun, it was because they were greatly angered by the actions of humans. It was an ill omen for the sun to disappear.
  4. Sòl and Màni chased by Sköll and Hati
  5. Sòl (Sunna, Norse): Sòl and Màni are chased relentlessly by Sköll and Hati, two wolves born of Fenrir the spawn of Loki. When Sòl is bitten into, she will be devoured at the time of Ragnarök. It is not clear on whether it was believed that every Eclipse is an attempt of this and ultimately a failure on the wolves part or if our ancestors believed that it would not happen until Ragnarök begins. 


Deities of the Moon:

  1. Selene (Greek): The Goddess was believed to be drawn down by Thessalian witches who trapped her to steal her blood. Villagers would beat Cymbals to negate the witches powers and free the Goddess. 
  2. Màni (Norse): See above at Sòl.
  3. Thoth (Egyptian): A lunar eclipse was seen as a bad omen as the disappearance of the moon was essentially a sign that health would fail.
  4. Elatha (Celtic):  Elatha's tale is much more romantic, taking his boat made of Silver out to sea, traveling to see his beloved which in turn causes a Lunar Eclipse. 


Now there are some Gods and Goddess's that share the title but also have control over different aspects of our lives. If you're choosing to worship a God or Goddess during an Eclipse, you'll at least be given more choice on who you work with better. I did not name every single Deity that is associated with these aspects merely because not every deity has a relationship regarding the eclipses. (At least that I could find.)

Solar vs. Lunar Eclipses

Magically and logically speaking, there's quite a bit of difference when it comes to either of these celestial occurrences. Obviously, they are two different celestial bodies that are affected by different shadows but the true difference lies in the energies present while each occurs.
Lunar eclipses seem to be more of a common occurrence but still a wonder to behold. The energies that are present can come off as weaker yet they are still valuable to take advantage of. Solar eclipses tend to be more powerful in nature to the point that I have personally felt an energy shift without the need for spellwork or concentration.
Different people experienced different symptoms when this most recent eclipse took place, but from my own experience I felt a surge of energy right before complete totality and as the sun re-emerged from behind the moon all the energy seemed to be sucked right out of me.

Harnessing the Power

Ok. The power is there right? So how do we utilize it? How do we use it in our practice or how will this help us along our path?  Well, this energy can be harnessed in several different ways.

Eclipse Water
 An easy method is by making eclipse water. You can start by taking a mason jar or a bottle of some form made of glass and empty and filling it with water. You can choose to use filtered water or tap, it usually doesn't matter much. Seal the container and then bring it out right as the eclipse begins and let it stay in the eclipses presence until it's completed its cycle. Once done you can choose to store it or use it right away, some people use it to water herbs that they plan to use in ritual or ceremony, you can drink it for a boost of health or energy (Your pet/familiar can enjoy this little treat too) or you can choose to use it in cooking. Anything in which requires water.

Charging Crystals

That's right. Time to take out your gems and let them soak up some celestial energy. For those who take their crystals out during the full moon to charge, you're in for a treat. Even if it's during a lunar eclipse, the amount of efficiency you will see in your crystals after an eclipse will probably double what the standard amount is and with a solar eclipse you can expect better.
All you have to do is take them out and place them in view of the eclipse as it occurs, much like the water, and once it's done you will have an efficient and well-charged crystal for when you need them next.

Meditation

It should come as no surprise that this is a great time to purify and meditate. Some choose to bathe before meditation, others use sage across their bodies to negate negative energies and allow positive ones to flow into you. This is a time for balance and renewal, about setting yourself onto the right course and meditation will help clarify what needs to change.You can even do so while you're charging your crystals and sealing up your water. Any spells you cast during will also be more potent.