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  • Happy Teltane, everyone!

    Today is the ancient Celtic celebration known as Teltane. It is a cross-quarter day, as we reach the halfway point between the Summer Solstice and the Autumnal Equinox. Although the days are still long, the sun rises later and sets earlier. The rhythm of the earth is shifting, and energies are beginning to draw inward. To ensure the balance between sun and earth energies necessary for a successful harvest, the ancient Celts celebrated a ritual marriage between earth and sun, male and female.

    “Even as the fullness of the Sun hung heavy in the summer sky, our ancestors noticed that each succeeding day saw the Sun rising later and setting earlier. As an assurance that the Sun would retain its power until the harvest was complete, the Celts celebrated a ritual marriage on this day between Lugh, the Sun, and Eire, the Earth. This cosmic mating of the male and female energies was vital to the maintenance of harmony and abundance.

    We have seen in our time the effects of imbalance of yin and yang. The restoration of this harmony and abundance in our lives and on our planet is a sacred task that each of us must shoulder. The male and female in each of us must learn to love itself, and, from that, to love the other.

    On Teltane, or Lammas, or Lughnassad, Lugh, the Celtic god of Light buried his foster mother Tailltiu beneath a great mound in Ireland. This signifies the withdrawal of the Mother Goddess into the earth in preparation for the falling seeds that will need her care if they are to germinate in winter.

    From The Essene Book of Days by Danaan Parry

    © Earthstewards Network Publications, Bainbridge Island WA
  • A year ago on this day, I was riding my bike in the rain through the Salt Marshes of Pawley’s Island, South Carolina, and really feeling, perhaps for the first time, the full implications of my mother’s declining condition. I had just spent the entire month of July with her, a month in which she had bounced back from a very debilitating condition and found fresh energy, and was grabbing life with both hands and celebrating it for all she was worth. It was also the month in which we had started her on home hospice, as her pulmonary doctor had pronounced that it was only a matter of months for her, now, until her lungs would completely give out.

    On this day, all of her newfound energy and activity had caught up to her, and she was having a major setback, as her pain levels went up a significant notch. The pain meds required to meet the higher pain level had pretty much knocked her out for the day. This was the first day that my grief over her impending demise produced tears and began to wash through me. It was also a day in which I very much felt the presence of my father there, for the first time, as, looking back on it now, I believe he had come to help take her home. It would be a month and a couple days later that she would leave to join him on the other side.

    But that month would see Mom make two trips to the beach, her first trips there that year, and some of the warmest moments I ever had with her. I wouldn’t trade that time with her for anything in the world.

    Teltane will always remind me of that day that I began the final grieving process for my mother’s life, and the day that I acknowledged Dad’s presence, come to take her home.

    I feel both of them with me today. I feel exceptionally loved.

    "Blessings Round the Tree of Life"
    acrylic on canvas, 18 x 24
    ©1996 Mara Friedman New Moon Visions
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