A RITUAL FOR SPRING
Yourself, your heart, mind, and spirit
A basket, bag, or coat pocket
Pen & paper
SUGGESTED BUT NEVER NECESSARY IF YOU DON’T HAVE THEM TOOLS:
Red, white, pink, or light green candles
Red scarves, shawls, etc. for your altar
Anything ram shaped (Aries)
Alcohol, water, or any other offering
March 20, 2019 marks the beginning of Aries season. With a fresh astrological year yawning before us, the earth is now stirred from her cold winter dreams, and, like a lover fluttering their eyelids, the world begins to bloom.
The Vernal Equinox is the initiation of spring. In the northern hemisphere, from where I write to you, we have all just endured the season of cold, of dark, of shadow.
The astrology of this transition from winter to spring moves us from Capricorn time, the time of work, of turning inward in Saturnine diligence, through Aquarius season, a time where we’re encouraged to translate that discipline into Uranian inventiveness and community connectivity, to Pisces season, the season of the sublime, the shadow, the real.
In seasonal shift, we find renewed force, both within ourselves and in the physical world around us. Living in this world too often cuts us off from the source of life, meaning our natural environment. Nothing would exist without her. Capitalism makes us forget this. But even if you live in a city, you are surrounded by a natural environment that you unconsciously interact with. It enters you and leaves you with each breath.
In honor of the return of spring, I wanted to carve out a small ritual that anyone can do to mark the occasion.
Aries is a cardinal fire sign ruled by Mars. No one sign can be summed up in a sentence, but for our purposes, we can think of Aries as a new soul. The ram explores their environment with reckless abandon. No mountaintop is too jagged, no cliffside too steep, for these rugged creatures. When conflict arises, Aries rushes at it headlong, stopping at nothing until they reach a new perspective, new sense of understanding, or triumph over their challenger.
Mars weaves a hot crown of horn around Aries’s temples. Mars is the patron planet of Aries season. We can take note of the bravery, the force, the warmth, the impulsivity of the sign and the planet, and try on these characteristics for ourselves at this time. Aries does not seek to dominate, but rather is driven by genuine curiosity, a soul-level need to understand everything under the Sun.
March 20, 2019 brings us the initiation of Aries season, springtime, and the full moon in Libra, signaling to us that this is a time of simultaneous new beginning and letting go. We are all so many things at once. Just as the astrological weather indicates resolution and initiation, so too can we sit in those spaces of beginning and end. As above, so below, my darlings.
Here are your instructions:
Gather the required tools (above). Take a walk today. Anywhere. Up the street, to a park, to the river, anywhere. Use your body to get there. Feel your feet connecting with the earth as you move. Imagine yourself as the ram on the cliff. As you walk, imagine yourself taking in energy from the Sun and Mars into your crown. Aries rules this part of the body.
Go somewhere new, take a route you don’t know. Aries encourages fearless exploration of the environment.
Find a place to settle in. Put your face toward the Sun.
Write yourself a letter. Write about the future first, then write about what’s to be released from the prior year. Write as little or as much as you see fit. There are no rules. Bulleted lists are as valid as rhyming couplets. Express what you contain.
Look around you. What catches your eye? Are there flowers? Fallen branches? Feathers? Stones? Unobtrusively, and with care, gather some items that speak to you. If you pull flowers or plants, be sure to ask permission from the plant first, and then thank it for its gift. This is important. Do not take more than you need, but be sure to take one thing that calls to you. Remember where you took your item from.
Go home. On a shelf or a corner of your bedroom floor, or your kitchen or washing machine—wherever you have room, wherever feels sacred, place the items you found outside, along with the letter you wrote yourself. You are building an altar.
Decorate the surface with other things that mean something to you. Pictures of loved ones, favorite places, pets. Anything red will do, to please Mars. Red wine will always help. While you’re building the altar, think about what you wrote in that letter to yourself. Your words are magick, carry magick weight. Imagine the future.
Seat yourself comfortably by the altar. There is no one way to do this, just get comfortable. Create space for yourself by taking in ten long breaths. Find a centered feeling, and still your mind. With each inhalation, you breathe in the future. With each exhalation, you purify and release from the old. Sit as long as you like in this space. You are cultivating an energetic spark.
In the next few days, return to the spot you took your items from, and bring an offering back to the earth. It could be the flowers or plants you harvested, returned intentionally to their place of origin. It could be something else natural that you want to give the earth. Make sure it is biodegradable and will bring no harm to the environment. We do this because we cannot only take from the earth without giving her something in return. Remember this.
Keep the letter you’ve written, if you like. Revisit it in Libra season, halfway through the year, and then again in Pisces season as the year winds down. Or, if you’re called to, burn it. Set it free. The choice is yours. The year is new. I believe in you.