Cerridwen Greenleaf, author of The Witch’s Guide to Ritual, has written a new blog post on New Years Eve and New Year Day tradition to try.
Any discussion of rituals for the month of January must include New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day. I remember the drama that ensued as people around the globe stood by to witness the sunrise on January 1, 2000, perceived as the beginning of the new millennium. While many other cultures observe their New Year at other times during the year, January 1 has also become a time of celebration, reflection and an opportunity to embrace change.
For many millennia, indigenous peoples have celebrated their own New Year in unique ways. One common element is the use of fire rituals by North, Central, and South American peoples. The Pilgrims who arrived to what was to become New England observed and documented that the Iroquois and other tribes they encountered had a New Year’s Council Fire, a time when the tribe gathered to review the past year, listen to their elders and speak their hopes, dreams, and visions of the coming year. In addition to your personal New Year’s ritual with the significant people in your life, I recommend a Bonfire Ceremony as a powerful way to bring positive change of the New Year into your life.
Bonfire Ceremonies are considered to open a door or portal into the spirit world that held the promise of receiving the blessings of spirit-love, healing, prosperity, peace and anything you need for personal transformation. This ritual is also an opportunity to pay respects and make homage to your ancestors and loved ones you have lost. For this reason alone, I suggest enacting the Fire Ceremony: our culture is losing the important connection to the older people in our lives. Involving them in the rituals, ceremonies and passages of our lives could heal a cultural rift and bring deep wisdom to all. Mayan shamans could “read” the fire in a divinatory fashion, and I hear that some modern metaphysicians can do the same. If you are fortunate enough to know anyone with such skills, invite them to your fire ceremony to share what they divine from the flames.
Spells, Incantations and Inspired Ideas for an Enchanted Life
Practice Sacred Living. Rituals are often performed to acknowledge special, sacred moments of life. When we align ourselves with the rhythms of the earth, we see that every day is sacred. Sacred living is the art of acknowledging the abundance of life and the deep meaning within natural rhythms. The Witch’s Guide to Ritual teaches the practice of daily rituals for self-care and personal growth.