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yule ritual

At the urging of Sinclair and a few others, I am
sharing this with the list. It is a Yule Ritual that
has been in my family for many, many generations.

Yule Ritual 

 In addition to your usual  tools, you will need: 

      A Green Altar Cloth 
      A Cauldron w/Lid or Cover Plate 
      Holly Sprig Wreath 
      Mistletoe Sprig Wreath 
      12 Low Vibration Stones (flat oval river rock
work well) 
      1 Black Votive Candle, 1 Green 12" Taper Candle,
1 White 12" Taper Candle, 1 Gold (12hr)
      Pillar Candle 
      Pine Incense 
      Bowl of Water w/ Pine Sprig in it 
      Plate of Sand 
      Other Personal Items of choice 

 This ritual should be performed right after sunset.
About an hour before, sweep area moving in a deosil
manner. Yule symbols such as Poinsettias, Pine Cones,
and even a decorated Yule Log nearby (if too big for
altar) adds to the ambiance. Place the proper candles
and symbols at the four cardinal directions. Place the
gold God pillar candle at right top of altar. Place
the white Goddess taper candle at the top left. Place
your Pentacle (or a plate with a Pentagram drawn on
it) in the center of the altar. Place your Cauldron to
the right of the altar, with the black votive candle,
Holly sprig wreath around it, inside. Cover cauldron
with lid or cover plate. Place the green taper candle
and mistletoe wreath where they will be behind you at
the beginning of the ritual. Outline your circle
perimeter with 11 of the low vibration stones (save
12th to close circle when you enter. Place the
 rest of your tools and props according to personal
preference. Take a shower or bath for purity. Sit
quietly for a period to ground and center. When ready
put on some soothing music associated with the Sabbat
and your ritual. Enter the standing stone circle and
close with 12th stone. 

The Ritual:

 Cast circle by envisioning flames of Yule colors red,
green, and gold coming up between the stones. When all
become a continuous line, step up to the altar and

 "From the darkness is born the light, From void,
fulfillment emerges... The darkest night
      of the year's at the threshold, Open now the
door, and honor the darkness." 

 Take the lid/plate off the cauldron and light the
black votive candle inside. Step back from the
cauldron and give silent honor to the Holly King, the
ruler of the dark half of the year. Call quarters,
start by lighting yellow candle in the East: 
 "Powers of Air, step forth from the darkness, Enter
my circle , as dark gives 'way to light.  Bring along
with you the essence of pine trees, Remind me of
Springtime As I face Solstice Night." 
 Light the pine incense and place on Pentacle/Center
Plate. Light the red candle in the South: 
 "Powers of Fire, step forth from the darkness, Enter
my circle, as dark gives 'way to
  light, Bring along with you the first glint of
tomorrow, Remind me of Summer As I face
 Solstice Night." 

 Pick up the Athame and brandish it in the flame of
the candle to reflect the light. Place on the
Pentacle/Center Plate. Light the blue candle in the
  "Powers of Water, step forth from the darkness,
Enter my circle, as dark gives 'way to
    light, Bring along with you bittersweet memories
Remind me of Autumn As I face
   Solstice Night." 

 Pick up the bowl of water, sprinkle water with pine
sprig in Pentacle/Center Plate. Light brown candle in
the North: 
 "Powers of Earth, step forth from the darkness, Enter
my circle, as dark gives 'way to
  light, bring along with you the land that now
slumbers, Remind me of Winter And this
  cold Solstice Night." 

Pick up the plate of sand, sprinkle sand in a line
around the other symbols. Step back from the alter for
a moment and contemplate the seasons of the past year,
and how their lessons have brought you to where you
are today. When ready, begin again: 
  "Dark my surroundings, and cold be this night But
Thy labor, Blessed Mother Has
 reborn the Sacred Light... The Child Divine, The most
honored Sun shall return with the
 sunrise, again, Two will be One." 

 Remove the Holly wreath from around the black votive
candle. With your right hand, present it to the four
elements in a deosil manner. Finally, in a clockwise
motion, place it behind you, to signify the death,
"passing", of the Holly King. Turn back to the altar.
Then with your left hand, reach behind you, and in a
clockwise motion, bring forward the Mistletoe wreath
and the green candle. Present them to the elements,
slide the wreath over the green candle and place the
candle in its holder in the cauldron. Light the green
candle with the black votive candle: 
  "Hark! Behold the Rebirth of the King of the
Woodlands! Behold the Oak King, strong
 and vital he rises!" Snuff the black votive candle
and with your right hand, place it behind you in a
clockwise motion. Turn back to the cauldron, close
your eyes, and silently honor the Oak King. Begin
again: "Awake now Thy Mother, Thy Lover, Thy Lady -
Awake now Thy Goddess of Life, Death, Rebirth." 

 Take the green candle out of the cauldron and light
the white Goddess candle on the altar. Replace the
green candle in the cauldron. Take the white Goddess
candle with both hands and hold out at arm's length
over the cauldron: 
 "Awaken, my Lady, look upon Thyne Divine Child, His
rebirth while You slumbered Was subtle and silent. The
Stag King, the Green Man, Lord of Fertility, He awaits
Thy  awakening, Gentle and benevolent" 

 Place the white Goddess candle back in its holder at
the left top of altar. Step back and assume the
Goddess position. In a bold voice: 
 "All hail the Oak King, His rebirth; a promise All
hail the Divine Child, Giver of Life All hail the
Blessed Sun, reborn to the Mother For he retakes His
throne at the end of Solstice Night!" 

 Now is the time for meditation and any spell
workings. Spell workings associated with Yule include
those for peace, harmony, love, and happiness. Next
celebrate with the Cakes and Ale (Fruitcake* and
Spiced Cider *) ceremony, saving some for the wee
Folkes, outside. Thank the Goddess and snuff Her
candle. Thank and release the elements: 
 "Carry sweet tidings, 'round the world and beyond, I
charge thee as messengers Earth,
  Water, Fire, and Air Let all rejoice loudly in the
Oak King's return. Teach all that you
  meet, with the glad tidings you bear." 

 Snuff each Quarter candle in a widdershins manner.
Step back and face the cauldron and the green candle
still burning bright. 
 "Before my circle, tonight, I close Blessings I ask
for this house and my kin. Tomorrow at daybreak, when
I arise A special flame I will carry, within... And a
gold candle upon my altar I'll light Adding my will to
the Sun King's intent to climb aloft in the vaulted
And for strength back to me; three times, strength
I've sent." 

 Snuff the green candle. Take the Mistletoe wreath and
place it on the other symbols on the Pentacle/Center
Plate. Release the circle. Clean up, leaving the gold
God pillar candle in center front to light upon rising
in the morning. You are done.

                Cakes and Ale Ritual

Many times this is left out of rituals. As a symbol of
the Great Rite, (the holy union of male and female
energies) it is an important but simple means of
offering libations to the Deities and Elementals.  
Cakes can be anything-we try to use Sabbat associated
foods, whole grains, etc. but at moon circles and
spell circles we’ve used everything from saltines to
fig bars to whole grain muffins or cakes.  Ale can be
fruit juice, milk, wine, mead, beer, cider….water is
not a good choice  because of the symbolism that we’re
trying to invoke.

Blessing of the Cakes is done in a manner that reminds
us that plants died in order that we might survive. 
Both cakes and ale are symbolic of Deity sacrifices
for us-the Corn Mother, the Grain God, the God of the
Vine, the blood of birth.

Blessing of the Ale is likewise done, and then the
Athame (ritual knife) is inserted into the chalice and
these words are said;
	“As the cup is to the Female
	So the Athame is to the Male”
Plunge the Athame into the Ale
	“Together they are One
	And Worlds are Born”

Visualize a mingling of coloured lights, from the
knife to the beverage and back, swirling together.
Offer the first and last sips and bites to your Spirit
guests, pass the Cake around with these words:
	“Take, eat, that you never hunger”
Pass the chalice around with these words:
	“Take, drink, that you never thirst”.

Thank the Goddess and God for their plenty and for
blessing your Cakes and Ale.

=======There's nae man sae deif as he tha' winna hear.
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