Tag Archive | greek pagan rituals

Poseidea Rite

Honoring: Poseidon
Date: Likely held during the month of Poseidion, most likely on the 8th ; on the modern calendar this is around December 19
Season: Probably held when the seas began to grow rough with the winter
Region: Athens

Items needed:
Bowl of water and stick (incense, punk, or natural) to light and douse
Candle, matches or lighter to light the stick.
Bowl of barley
Offerings
Libation bowl
Cup

In the ritual script, italicized text refers to directions and actions and isn’t meant to be spoken.


Procession

Assemble and prepare to process to the altar.

We go to the holy place with reverence and love, to honor the gods.

Proceed to enter the sacred space.

Purification of participants

Light a stick and extinguish in the bowl of water, creating lustral water.

May all be made pure who wash in this water.

Pour water over the hands of each person so that they may rinse their face and hands in the lustral water.

Purification of space

Pass the bowl of barley among the participants so that each may take a handful of barley.

May all that is profane be gone from here!

Each person throws barley onto the altar, gently if indoors, with force if outside.

Invocation

We call to Poseidon, great son of Kronos
and beautiful Rhea, lord of waters fresh and briny,
king of the broad blue seas and of each sweet spring
and fountain that issues from the earth. Poseidon,
trident-bearer, mighty one, master of the beasts
of the sea, companion of the ocean-nymphs,
yours is the source of life, the water and the salt,
yours are the treasures beneath the waves. Good friend
of the sailor and the fisherman, granter of food
and riches to mankind, Poseidon, we call to you.

If ever we have honored you, poured out sweet wine
in reverence and love, O great ones, deathless ones,
hear now our prayers, grant now your blessings. Praise be to you!

Statement of purpose

Today we honor Poseidon, lord of the oceans, who holds in his hands a force that can throw the mortal world into chaos, whose might it is that brings the ship safe to harbor or wrecks it on some stony shore. The winter seas are yours, Poseidon, the perils faced by those who sail them late in season; yours too is the wisdom won by the wayfarer, the good we gain by time and travel, the wealth that comes to those who dare. As the cold winds come, as we settle by the fire, as we make good use of that which we gained during longer days, we praise your might, Poseidon, O god to whom the rise and fall of a nation is merely a moment, O god whose gifts we praise, whose blessing we ask.

A prayer of thankfulness and joy

This day we offer our praise to Poseidon,
older than words, older than the world of men,
maker of the horse, master of the waves,
granter to men of all that carried us from land
to land, friend of the merchant and the trader,
O god who lay the stones on which we built our bridges,
the base that bears the life we make. Poseidon,
earth-shaker, holder of the bones of the world,
ancient one, mighty one, your names and titles lost
to time, your power hidden in seabed and crevice,
held in check by your goodness and benevolence,
we thank you for your mercy, for the care you take
of humankind. As the nights grow long and the waves
grow rough, we take joy in your gifts, we give thanks
for your many blessings, O fathomless one.

Libations and offerings

Pour wine, milk, or other liquid offering into cup, hold up filled cup.

To noble Hestia, who ever comes first and last,
We offer this drink; all praise to you, O Hestia!

Pour out some wine into the libation bowl; hold up cup, refilling if necessary.

To mighty Poseidon who rules the waves and the depths,
We offer this drink; all praise to you, O Poseidon!

Pour out some wine into the libation bowl; hold up cup , refilling if necessary.

To noble Hestia, who ever comes last and first,
We offer this drink; all praise to you, O Hestia!

Pour out some wine into the libation bowl; hold up cup, refilling if necessary.

We share this drink among ourselves with love for the gods
and gratitude for all we have been given.

Pass the cup among the participants.

Thanks

We thank you, Poseidon, for your presence this day
as we celebrate your festival with reverence and joy.
We thank you, Poseidon, for your many blessings,
for the great gifts you grant to humanity.
With love and devotion we praise and honor you.

Close

We leave this holy place, with reverence and gratitude for all we have been given. The rite is ended.

Step away from the altar and leave the sacred space.


A PDF version of this ritual script is available here.

For more information on ritual format, see Some Elements of Hellenic Ritual at my other blog.

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Boreaia Rite

Honoring: Boreas, god of the north wind, and his daughter Chione, goddess of snow
Date: Beginning of winter
Season: Winter

Items needed
Bowl of water and stick (incense, punk, or natural) to light and douse
Candle, matches or lighter to light the stick
Bowl of barley
Offering of a paper snowflake or other gift(s).
Libation
Libation bowl
Cup

In the ritual script, italicized text refers to directions and actions and isn’t meant to be spoken.

Procession

Assemble and prepare to process to the altar.

We go to the holy place with reverence and love, to honor the gods.

Proceed to enter the sacred space.

Purification of participants

Light the stick or incense and extinguish in the bowl of water, creating lustral water.

May all be made pure who wash in this water.

Pour water over the hands of each person so that they may rinse their face and hands in the lustral water.

Purification of space

Pass the bowl of barley among the participants so that each may take a handful of barley.

May all that is profane be gone from here!

Each person throws barley onto the altar, gently if indoors, with force if outside.

Invocation

Boreas of the bitter winds, lord of the north,
lord of distant Thrace, master of the wintertime,
purple-winged god of the darkening days,
I call to you, O Boreas, O god of cold and ice.

Chione of the snows, of the softly falling flakes
and the keen and biting storms, the billowy drifts
and the treacherous ice, daughter of the north,
I call to you, O Chione, O goddess of the frost.

If ever we have honored you, poured out sweet wine
in reverence and love, O great ones, deathless ones,
hear now our prayers, grant now your blessings. Praise be to you!

Statement of purpose

As the days grow short and the nights grow long,
as the air grows chill and the earth stone-cold,
we gather to welcome the gods of the season,
to greet you with reverence and love.

Prayers and Offerings

We welcome you, O Boreas, who rules the lands
of ice and rime, who in your season brings to us
a frost to rest the weary earth, a chill to set
our bones a-shiver, to set the world anew.
We welcome you, O Chione, mistress of the snows,
whose might it is that cloaks the land in alabaster white,
whose hand it is that dips each tree in shining ice,
whose gift it is to grace the world with beauty.

O gods of the cold and silent lands, O gods
on whose power we rely, in whose good will we trust,
we thank you for your many blessings, we praise your might.
For your care and warding in seasons past, we thank you;
we pray to you, O gods, grant us your enduring favor.
For a safe return from uncertain travels, we thank you;
we pray to you, O gods, grant us your enduring favor.
For abundance granted each wintertide, we thank you;
we pray to you, O gods, grant us your enduring favor.

Hold up paper snowflakes or other gifts.

We offer you this token of our reverence and thanks, O gods.

Place gifts on altar.

Libations

Pour wine, milk, or other liquid offering into cup, hold up filled cup.

To noble Hestia, who ever comes first and last,
We offer this drink; all praise to you, O Hestia!

Pour out some drink into the libation bowl; hold up cup, refilling if necessary.

To Boreas of the cold north wind, winter’s lord,
We offer this drink; all praise to you, O Boreas!

Pour out some drink into the libation bowl; hold up cup , refilling if necessary.

To Chione of the snows, capricious and comely,
We offer this drink; all praise to you, O Chione!

Pour out some drink into the libation bowl; hold up cup , refilling if necessary.

To noble Hestia, who ever comes last and first,
We offer this drink; all praise to you, O Hestia!

Pour out some drink into the libation bowl; hold up cup, refilling if necessary.

We share this drink among ourselves with love for the gods
and gratitude for all we have been given.

Pass the cup among the participants.

Thanks

We thank you, O gods, for your presence this day
as we celebrate your festival with reverence and joy.
We thank you, O gods, for your many blessings,
for the great gifts you grant to humanity.
With love and devotion we praise and honor you.

Close

We leave this holy place, with reverence and gratitude for all we have been given. The rite is ended.

Step away from the altar and leave the sacred space.


A PDF version of this ritual script is available here.

For more information on ritual format, see Some Elements of Hellenic Ritual at my other blog.

Democratia Rite

Democratia

Honoring: The goddess Democratia (Democracy)
Date: 12 Boedromion
Season: Would be appropriate during civic or patriotic holidays, or on election days.
Region: Athens

Items needed
Bowl of water and stick (incense, punk, or natural) to light and douse
Candle, matches or lighter to light the stick
Bowl of barley
Libation
Libation bowl
Cup

In the ritual script, italicized text refers to directions and actions and isn’t meant to be spoken.


Procession

Assemble and prepare to process to the altar.

We go to the holy place with reverence and love, to honor the gods.

Purification of participants

Light stick and extinguish in the bowl of water, creating lustral water.

May all be made pure who wash in this water.

Pour water over the hands of each person so that they may rinse their face and hands in the lustral water.

Purification of space

Pass the bowl of barley among the participants so that each may take a handful of barley.

May all that is profane be gone from here!

Each person throws barley onto the altar, gently if indoors, with force if outside.

Invocation

We call to gracious Democratia, goddess so dear
to us, so dear to those who honored our gods of old.
O goddess who gives a voice to all, who ensures
that the mighty hear our pleas, attend to our needs.
O goddess in whom reside our duty and our strength,
granter of wisdom with which to wield our rights
and pay our debts, to whom we are responsible,
for whom we fight and die, Democratia, goddess
of a hand both open and firm, we praise you.

If ever we have honored you, poured out sweet wine
in reverence and love, O great ones, deathless ones,
hear now our prayers, grant now your blessings. Praise be to you!

Statement of purpose

Today we gather to honor Democratia, great goddess of democracy, whose gifts to mankind are great. We thank you, O goddess, for the gift of freedom and the ability to exercise it. We thank you for our choices, both wise and foolish, and the will to make them. As the ancients did, we know your worth and treasure you for it, and we know as well the need to hold to you. May you be with us, O goddess, always and forever.

A prayer of thanks

To Democratia, wise one, fair one, well known
to the ancients who named you thus, friend of those
with the will to work within the world, that it may
be made better for all. Goddess, we thank you
for our freedom, we thank you for opportunity,
for the right to be heard and the right to decide.
Each time we think of the greater world, each time
we act with purpose and intent, each time we go
to cast our vote, we thank you and we honor you.

Libations

Pour wine, milk, or other liquid offering into cup, hold up filled cup.

To noble Hestia, who ever comes first and last,
We offer this drink; all praise to you, O Hestia!

Pour out some drink into the libation bowl; hold up cup, refilling if necessary.

To Democratia, who grants us each a voice and a vote,
We offer this drink; all praise to you, O Democratia!

Pour out some drink into the libation bowl; hold up cup , refilling if necessary.

To noble Hestia, who ever comes last and first,
We offer this drink; all praise to you, O Hestia!

Pour out some drink into the libation bowl; hold up cup, refilling if necessary.

We share this drink among ourselves with love for the gods
and gratitude for all we have been given.

Pass the cup among the participants.

Thanks

We thank you, O gods, for your presence this day
as we celebrate your festival with reverence and joy.
We thank you, O gods, for your many blessings,
for the great gifts you grant to men and women.
With love and devotion we praise and honor you.

Close

We leave this holy place, with reverence and gratitude for all we have been given. The rite is ended.

Step away from the altar and leave the sacred space.


For more information on ritual format, see my other blog at http://hearthfirehandworks.com/2015/09/22/festivals-some-elements-of-hellenic-ritual/.

A PDF version of the ritual script is available here.