Beanery Online Literary Magazine

May 18, 2011

Vernal Full Moon Rising



Kathie Buchanan

March 19th, 2011, was a very special holiday. 

The moon rose to break night into day in equal proportions.

The evening was celebrated with like-minded loved ones.

Some consider a holiday such as this “Pagan”, but the Vernal Equinox has been celebrated for thousands of years by millions of people worldwide.

We give thanks as we usher in Spring. 

We pray for the new beginnings that Spring promises.

We reflect on our own pre-birth, and development in our mother’s womb,

and our journey…Where we are right now. 

We use corn, fire, tobacco, water, a crystal, a sacred pipe, song, dance, drums.

We use the symbols of the Four Directions, each with a color that represents the

Spiritual Paths. Red in the East, Yellow in the South, Black in the West, and White in

the North.

At first we smudge with blends of sage, sweetgrass, cedar, and/or tobacco. We are

cleansed by the aromatic and healing blend. We are ready to put our hearts and minds

together in a good way. The circle is now closed. No one leaves or chit chats while the

ceremony is taking place. 

The Sacred Pipe is unbundled and filled with a special blend of herbs and tobacco in a

certain way by The Pipe Carrier who is guiding us. Sometimes The Pipe Carrier

will explain to new people why he or she is doing something, or what we are

going to do. No one is made to feel “put on the spot.” Prayers can be given

Most will each pray aloud, asking for what is needed. First, one prays for ones

self, for we can be of no help to anyone without our own strength and rejuvenation. 

Next, we pray for others, with special prayers that have been requested by someone. 

When we pray for others who haven’t requested specific prayer, we pray “for their

highest good” only, for we do not assume that we know what is needed for them. But, we

recognize that The Creator, The Earth Mother and the other Powers know what is needed.

After the prayers are given, The Sacred Pipe is passed and the receiver can either

hold The Pipe to their heart or smoke it. The puff of the smoke contains one’s most

heart-felt silent prayer which is carried to The Creator.
Surely the answers shall come!

For it is a good (“Holi”) day! 

AHO!  Mitakuye Oyasin!  (“Amen!” We are all related!)

The pipe has been re-bundled in silence after everything in the bowl is “consumed.”

We sing a special song and drum. Some use rattles as well. 
Next, we move to the outside and see Grandmother Moon high in the sky on a clear night. 

We give a pinch of cornmeal, then take a drink of water with a crystal in it that

was previously prepared. 

We only give thanks during this part of our Holiday Ceremony. We ask

for nothing. We are grateful.

We sing a closing song as we drum. We walk counter clockwise in a circle which honors

The Feminine. We put our minds to becoming aware of our shadow selves. To become better people through knowing ourselves; through changing what is needed in ourselves.

We all gather together afterwards and have a wonderful “Potlatch;” everyone brings

something to share to eat and drink.

We often talk long into the evening. We laugh, share, and love one another.

Each Full Moon, we will have a similar Holiday/Ceremony, but this one is very special! 

Special, because for six moons we have not been able to gather due to certain


This Vernal Moon Eqinox rising is a new beginning of a wonderful old

Holiday/Ceremony full of hope, love, gratitude, and peace. Yes, it IS a good day! 

And a very special Holiday/Ceremony night!



Who Am I?

A Beanery Writers Group Story in Photographs

Youghiogheny River AKAs


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