2015 Autumn Equinox Festival
By: Minette Quick
AUTUMN EQUINOX FESTIVAL held at FOUNDATION CENTRE, IRELAND
September 12th, 2015
The weather, after a week of warmer temperatures which finally enabled the completion of the harvest, remained dry and bright for the afternoon, though rather cool as we processed through the more muted colours of autumn to the Rose Garden, Druid Grove of Dana and the Abbey Priory of Tara. A spirit of contemplation seemed to wrap us in its gentle cloak - which reflected the balancing of energies within Nature at this time of year.
Persephone beckoned us to join her on her annual pilgrimage into the Underworld as we entered the gentle atmosphere within the Temple to unite with the world of the unconscious and the deep place of creativity within as we prepare to withdraw and rest in the winter months.
At the Well the words of The Morrigan, whilst reminding us of the inevitable turning of the Wheel of Life, led us warmly to the Eternal Truth of the Mysteries which encourage us to let go of ancient ways which lead to Death with Her words. “Live now. Now is forever.” And so we invoked the presence of Deity amongst us, and all were blessed with Brigid’s sacred water from the Well in peace.
Lakshmi, Goddess of Kindness and Compassion spoke in Her Oracle of the abundance still of summer flowers and fruits from Nature’s Garden which in its generosity provides more than enough in plenty for all. This was followed by a space for reflection to a beautiful air played on the harp.
Through the medium of a heartfelt poem, one of our members vividly expressed the inner reality of finding oneself carried away by the frenetic energy which can tip us over the edge in the modern world. She movingly expressed the need to discover a means of maintaining a balance in life, lest we sap our essential spiritual energy which powers everything we hope to achieve. We could all resonate very much with this, so it was good to raise our energy together, afterwards, in a powerful rhythmic African chant – with the added intention of uniting spiritually with those of our members in lands where they face strong opposition to equality between the sexes, whilst bearing heavy burdens and draining work to survive.
Throughout the whole occasion it seemed that the earlier words of The Morrigan were infusing everything with their magic, for once again as each member made their contribution and the ceremony unfolded, the presence of Deity was felt. And this was potently demonstrated within our Mystery Play which was truly inspirational as Juno and Jupiter the Great Mother and Father of the Roman Gods and their daughter the Goddess Minerva each spoke with great wisdom and excellence, continuing the tradition of former days when Olivia herself created and directed all our plays at Festivals! We felt her presence with us together with her brother Lawrence and his wife Pamela, particularly in a moving Journey.
A lovely section of our regular ceremonies is devoted to remembering and sending blessings on the families and friends of members of the Fellowship who have recently passed on. Blessings are also sent in support of the special concerns of all those present for relatives and friends near or far. A ribbon was tied to the Prayer Tree in the Healing Chapel in memory of a member whose fellow Priestess Hierophant sent a warm and glowing account of her and all that she achieved over the years. Many of those present took the opportunity to place their own ribbons on the Tree to receive the Blessings of the Goddess on their own needs and those of others known to them.
Thanks were given after the usual sharing of notices. Healing was offered to any who wished it, and our beautiful calm day together came to a close probably for the last time this year in full daylight as the evenings close in. As ever, we made our way out through the gardens and the yard before finally meeting up for tea down in the village in enjoyable company.
All is well at Foundation Centre and greetings are sent in peace and love to all.
Lakshmi Moon © Val Young
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(Our gratitude to Minette, Val and everyone at the Foundation Center Temple.)
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