Hyperborean Ritual

Sunweaver

The ritual that follows is presented in two parts and though the pronouns used therein are plural, it should be easily adaptable for solitary worship. Wine is used throughout, but grape juice is also an appropriate libation for those who choose not to use wine. You will also see phrases repeated in both parts and whole sections copied from one part to the next. This is intentional and meant to connect these two celebrations in the minds of those participating.

***

This part of the ritual is for the beginning of the Hyperborea season, the exact timing of which varies depending on whom you ask. I prefer to celebrate in the evening at some point in early November with wine and friends.

The Temple at Delphi faced East, welcoming the light of the rising sun, the light of insight and order, the light of reason that makes civilization possible. That was the house of Apollo then and this is the house of Apollo now. We welcome him by lighting a candle in the East.

[light candle]

In those days, the Pythia made and broke nations and kings with her words. She was blessed by Apollo, inspired through the pneuma that rose up from the Earth. The Temple is now broken and the pneuma no longer rises into her holy sanctuary, the adyton, but we offer this incense in thanks for that which Apollo has illuminated for us and in remembrance of the Oracle.

Pythian Apollo, hear our prayers,
Blessed is the son of Leto,
God of Prophets, who sees afar,
He who knows, we offer this to you,
May we be blessed with your favor.

[light incense]

The Temple at Delphi also faced West, welcoming the coming night, the darkness of mystery, the unknown, unreasonable, and the wildly emotional that reminds us we are little more than animals. That was the house of Dionysus then and this is the house of Dionysus now. We welcome him with an offering of wine.

Dionysos Lyaeus, hear our prayers,
Blessed is the son of Zeus and Semele
Who frees us from care, we offer this to you,
May we be blessed with your favor.

[libation, but do not drink yet]

There is a time for order and a time for wildness and this dark time of year is not the time for order, so we bid farewell to Apollo as he makes his way to the lands beyond the North.

[extinguish candle]

We await his return at the the end of winter. Until then, we will bear the light and just as we balance sober reverence with celebration; so too will we balance wild emotion with reason. In the moonless night of the darkest month and in the longest night we will light candles again and remember that it is the light of our god that we bear.

Now we drink deep and revel in the blessings of Dionysus. Now we welcome the coming dark. Opa!

[celebration ensues]

***

This part of the ritual is for the end of the Hyperborea season. Again, the exact timing will depend on whom you ask, but it is usually around February or March. I prefer to celebrate around breakfast or brunch with coffee and friends.

The Temple at Delphi faced West, welcoming the coming night, the darkness of mystery, the unknown, unreasonable, and the wildly emotional that reminds us we are little more than animals. That was the house of Dionysus then and this is the house of Dionysus now. We welcome him with an offering of wine.

Dionysos Lyaeus, hear our prayers,
Blessed is the son of Zeus and Semele
Who frees us from care, we offer this to you,
May we be blessed with your favor.

[libation]

We have come to the end of winter and in these few months we have celebrated the blessings of Dionysos, reveled in wild freedom as in the moonless night of the darkest month and in the longest night we lit candles to carry a little bit of the light of knowledge and reason with us, however small and feeble it may have been.

The Temple at Delphi also faced East, welcoming the light of the rising sun, the light of insight and order, the light of reason that makes civilization possible. That was the house of Apollo then and this is the house of Apollo now. We welcome him by lighting a candle in the East.

[light candle]

In those days, the Pythia made and broke nations and kings with her words. She was blessed by Apollo, inspired through the pneuma that rose up from the Earth. The Temple is now broken and the pneuma no longer rises into her holy sanctuary, the adyton, but we offer this incense in thanks for that which Apollo will illuminate for us and in remembrance of the Oracle.

Pythian Apollo, hear our prayers,
Blessed is the son of Leto,
God of Prophets, who sees afar,
He who knows, we offer this to you,
May we be blessed with your favor.

[light incense]

There is a time for wildness and a time for order and these brighter days are a time for order, so we bid welcome to Apollo as he makes his way from the lands beyond the North.

We will continue to bear the light and just as we balance celebration with sober reverence; so too will we balance reason with cathartic release. Through these brightest days as we cultivate reason, we will continue to give ourselves over to emotion, welcoming and releasing both sadness and joy as they come in each moment.

Now we will sit and eat together as the sun rises, feasting in honor of Apollo in the knowledge that he is with us.

[celebration ensues]

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