Tags: braided wheel tradition

Braided Wheel Tradition

Liturgy: "Invocation to the Ground of Being" by Starhawk, and Symbolic Great Rite

This is one of my favorite invocations.  It can be done by two people or by a whole group  with each half alternating.

 "Invocation to the Ground of Being" by Starhawk

Nameless One            —              of many names
Eternal                        and ever-changing One
Who is found nowhere—but appears everywhere
eyond                                         and within all.
Timeless                      —   circles of the seasons,
Unknowable mystery   —                  known by all.
Lord of the Dance        —            Mother of all life:
Be radiant with us,      — Engulf us with Your love,


See with our eyes,
Hear with our ears,
Breathe with our nostrils,
Touch with our hands,
Kiss with our lips,
Open our hearts!
That we may live free at last
Joyful in the single song
Of all that is, was, or ever shall be!

I was having trouble finding the wording for the  Symbolic Great Rite on the internet. So is here is the version my group uses.

The two officiants each hold a Wand in their Right hand and a Chalice in their Left hand. They stand facing each other holding their Wands over their partners Chalice, and alternate saying the lines.
"Be it known that no man is greater than a woman."
                      "Nor is a woman greater than a man."
"For what one lacks..."                                             
                                          "...the other can provide."
"As the Wand is to the Male.."                                  
                          "...So the chalice is to the Female."
"And when the two are joined..."                              
(lowering the wands into the Chalices)
                                  "...They become one in truth."
(Simultaneously) "For there is no greater magic in all the world than that of love."

Anticipators' Yule

The group I practice with is made up of people who live all over New York State. Some of use work regular day jobs but others work nights and weekends. And some have young children to care for. Some of us have to drive three and half hours to get to our meetings so we meet somewhere where people can stay overnight. We try to meet at least once a month but we can't get together just any time we like.

We met this past weekend for what we called "Anticipators' Yule". Our community has been celebrating "Procrastinators' Beltain" on Memorial Day weekend for almost twenty years. So it seemed fitting.

We invoked Persephone and Hades and burned lists of things we wanted to divest ourselves of.

One of our members came up with a nice energy raising chant for the magick.
The wheel turns
The fire burns
The God returns
The sun is reborn

We used a Traditional BlueStar bread blessing song
Dear Lady bless
These cakes we share.
Accept the love
Your crafters bear.
We reap your bounty
And praise your name,
Part in your love
And meet again.

Lord's blessings on
These cakes we share.
Lord where you dance,
Please lead us there.
In Greenwood groves
Beneath your sun,
All love is shared
All hearts are one.
Braided Wheel Tradition

Small Group Wiccan Ritual Form in the Braided Wheel Tradition

The Wiccan ritual is fairly straight forward but there is a surprising amount of variation in practice. I'm not just talking about the words used but the actual order of the steps. In the Braided Wheel Tradition we do the purification first, many traditions do it after the Circle casting. Some traditions combine the Circle casting with the Quarter calls. I know one tradition that does the Circle casting after the Magickal work. Some traditions start the Quarter calls in the North instead of the East, that doesn't even touch on the controversy over the permutations on: East, Air, Wands, South, Fire, Athamés. This makes even a simple list of "what to do in ritual" a bit controversial. Evan so, sometimes it helps to just have a list of what the steps in the ritual are. If you do it differently just cut and paste it to your preferences.

This ritual structure works for small groups of thirteen or less. Solitary rituals have a slightly different shape as do rituals for groups of 14-100 and groups of 100 and more.
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Sometimes it helps to just have a very detailed step by step description of what goes on in a small group ritual.

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Braided Wheel Tradition

Circle Casting with Athame and Fire

A coven sister of mine likes to use these very pretty Circle Casting and Circle Dismissal chants. I don't know who wrote them and she says they are not a set (they were not written intentionally to go together) but they work well together. She sings them more than says them.

As I will and through this blade
Do I draw this magick fire.
Harken well ye elements five,
God and Goddess from afar,
Build we now this sacred space.
Joy be shared by all of us.
Raise the temple in this place
In Perfect Love and Perfect Trust.

Fire out of magick made
We (I) draw you back into this blade
Until we (I) call thee forth again
To serve us as the sacred flame.
Braided Wheel Tradition

Traditional German Healing Charm

I was visiting my parents this evening and my mom taught me a charm for healing minor wounds.
Heile! Heile! Segen! (Halie! Halie! Sagan)
Drei Tage Regen (Drai Tahga Ragan)
Drei Tage Schnee (Drai Tahga Shnay)
Dann tut's nicht mehr Weh (Dahn tut's nicht mare vay)

My dad says you have to say it German for it to work, but here is a translation.
Heal! Heal! Blessing!
Three days rain!
Three days snow!
Then there's no more pain!

My parents are not pagans but they spent a lot of time in Germany just after WWII. My dad got his Ph.D there. Some of my Wicca students took my dad's college course in Medieval German literature. They told me he was teaching them spells in class. When I asked him about it he told me about a Medieval German spell he had for making the crops grow. He said it was three pages long, "No wonder people don't farm anymore. It's too complicated".

Goddess/God polarity and Homosexuality

Someone on a gay pagan list was asking how homosexuality fits in with the clear heterosexual message of the God and Goddess in Wicca.

This is my answer.

There are several reasons that the Goddess/God polarity is important to me.

1) If you ask Jewish and Christian scholars they will tell you that their God has no gender. "He" is just called "He" because we have no gender-neutral pronouns.
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2) Christianity has embraced the Zoroastrian duality of Good/Evil. The primary symbolism of Christianity is a Good God locked in battle with and Evil God (the Devil). Two men fighting for possession of everything. This metaphor pits all opposites against each other in the battle. One must loose for the other to win. Everyone must choose a side.

Wicca embraces a heterosexual duality. The God and Goddess locked in sexual embrace. A man and a woman - fighting, struggling, pleasuring, separating, and joining together.
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3) Does this necessarily exclude same sex union?


Just as Christians understand that the battle between God and Satan is within every individual, So Wiccans understand that the union of the Goddess and the God is within every individual. Like many native cultures Wicca recognizes that people who transcend the limits of their physical gender have access to special (powerful) magic. Transgender people manifest the whole polarity rather than manifesting just one point on the scale.
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