Welsh dragon

What Holidays do Witches Celebrate?

by Taliesin Enion Vawr

Welsh dragon

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Faerie worship is centered around four great festivals which record in chronological order the birth, growth, and decline of the fruits of the earth. These festivals and four lesser festivals corresponded to natural cycles of Nature (animal mating, seasons, planting and harvest) and the cycles of the Sun (Solstices and Equinoxes). These are

The four lesser Sabbats are

These comprise a total of eight major festivals.  We have attached a link to a Basic Sabbat Ritual at the bottom of this page.

If one follows the Welsh faerie path and offers the sacrifices of love and spiritual dedication to the Divine Earth Goddess and the Celestial God during these Sabbats, we believe that he or she will make evident an inner awareness of their true spiritual nature. Like our earlier Pictish and Celtic forbearers, Welsh Witches have an affinity for patterns in Ritual, Song, Words, and Art, and are an intensely proud and passionate people. The rich Sabbat festivals, customs, artwork and music are indicative of a continuing Celtic heritage, Triscelewhich is best represented by the Triscele, a Celtic version of the Yin Yang symbol. A Triscele is three spiral lines appearing to move in the same direction from a central point, enclosed by a circle. This symbol of three is an important element in the Welsh religious philosophy. Three is the number of the stages of life. The goddess shows three faces: Maid, Mother and Crone.

Welsh Faerie Witches also have a great love and concern for Nature in all her aspects. This love created the reflections of human life mirrored in the seasons that are the basis for our art, music, ritual and spirituality. There is a veneration of hills and streams, springs and trees which personify divine power. Even fish (the Salmon of knowledge) are part of the divine Triad of Love, Knowledge and Power. The seasons of the year renew the Goddess and she needs the participation of her creations to keep the cycle going. This is the real function of the Sabbats. They reinforce the ties between humankind, the Earth and Sun that give us life.

Unlike other gods that allow humanity to exist at their sufferance, the Lord & Lady need us just as much as we need them, and we are partners in the pageant of Life. The Welsh year is divided into two halves: October 31st to April 30th, the dark part of the year, and May 1st to October 30th, the light half of the year. The beginning of the year occurs at Nos Galon Gaeof (Samhain).

SOLAR CALENDAR

Click on an underlined title below

NOS GALON GAEOF
(Greater Sabbat)

Samhain, All Hallows Eve, Westwind Sabbat
Begins Sundown, October 31. The Festival of the Last Harvest; Focus on divination and departed Ancestors. The beginning of the Witch Year. The God presides. The end of good weather.

GWYL CANOL GAEAF
(Lesser Sabbat)

Yule, Alban Arthan
Winter Solstice begins Sundown, December 21 (day before Solstice.) Day of the Yew, Mistletoe, Palm and Silver Fir. Birth of the Sun God; the Divine Child.

NOS GWYL FAIR
(Greater Sabbat)

Candlemas, Olimelg, Brigid
Sabbat begins sundown, February 2; Fire Festival of Cerridwen, We prepare light so that our goddess may find her way out of the darkness and return to us; Cerridwen, the triple goddess of poetry, smithcr
aft, and medicine, presides. We bid farewell to the horned god.

GWYL CANOL GWENWYNOL:
(Lesser Sabbat)

Spring Equinox, Alban Elfed, Eostar Sabbat
Begins sundown, (March 20th or 21st or the day before the Equinox) Day of the Gorse. Festival of the Goddess Eostar, to whom the hare and the scarlet egg are sacred. Fertility Rites for the early sowing. The Goddess Arianrhod names and arms the Sun God, Llew. The Sun God, Llew, rides forth in splendor.

NOS GALON-MAI
(Greater Sabbat)

Bealtaine, May Eve, Eastwind Sabbat
Begins sundown, April 30. Fertility Rituals for growth and health of crops and animals. The beginning of good weather. The Sun God becomes the Lover of the Goddess. The Goddess Bloduewedd presides.

GWYL CANOL HAF
(Lesser Sabbat)

Midsummer Eve, Alban Hefin, Litha Sabbat
Begins sundown, (June 20th or 21st or the day before Summer Solstice) Day of the Heather. The Feast of the Summer Goddess who rules Marriage. The Sun God is crucified by his Dark Self and his domains confiscated.

NOS GWYL AWST
(Greater Sabbat)

Lughnasadh, Lammas, Festival of August, Southwind Sabbat
Begins sundown, July 31. Funeral Games of Lugh and Festival of Early harvest. The death of the sacred king, that life might continue; he is symbolically eaten. The new king weds the Goddess.

GWYL CANOL HYDREF
(Lesser Sabbat)

Autumn Equinox, Alban Elfed, Mabon Sabbat
Begins sundown, September 21 (day before Equinox) Day of the Aspen. Harvest festival. Horned God is mourned by the Goddess.

 

MISCELLANEOUS FESTIVALS

FESTIVAL NAME BEGINS AT
Gwyl o Rhiannon (Feast of Rhiannon) Sundown December 2
Bellisama Dydd (Day of Bellisama) Sundown December 12
Gwyl o Golau (Festival of Lights) Sundown December 13
Gwyl Nadolig (Yuletide Tree Festival
and Elder Festival)
Sundown December 23
Gwyl o Gwin a Hyfrydwch (Festival of
Wine and Pleasure)
Sundown December 28 thru December 31
Braciaca Dydd (Day of Braciaca) Sundown January 23 thru January 24
Gwyl o Danu a Cernunnos (Festival of
Love: Danu and Cernunnos)
Sundown February 13 thru February 21
Merriddyn Dydd (Day of Merriddyn) Sundown February 28
Gwyl o Merriddyn (Feast of Merlin) Sundown March 1
Rhyfeddod Lleiaf o Rhiannon
(Lesser Mysteries of Rhiannon)
Sundown March 3 thru Dawn March 6
Rites of Wine and Pleasure Sundown March 21 thru March 25
Cernunnos Dydd (Day of Cernunnos) Sundown April 30
Madb Dydd (Day of the Dark Goddess) Sundown May 23
Rites of Harvest Sundown June 5 thru June 14
Gwyl o Epona (Feast of Epona) Sundown June 12
Gwyl o Bardd (Festival of the Bards) Sundown June 17 thru June 22
Well Blessing Rite To the Water Goddess Sundown June 23
Gwyl o Cerridwen (Feast of Cerridwen) Sundown July 13
Festival of the Forest Spirits Sundown July 19 thru July 21
Lugh Dydd (Day of Lugh) Sundown August 5
The Day of The Queen of Heaven Sundown August 14
Feast of the Late Wine Sundown August 19
Festival of Heroes Sundown Aug 22 thru Aug 25
Birth of the Mother Sundown Sept 7
Greater Mysteries of Llyr Sundown September 24 thru 28
Birth of Taliesin Sundown Sept 25
Feast of Ancestors Sundown November 1
Feast of Gods of Harvest and Hunt Sundown Nov 9 thru Nov 11

Click here to see the Basic Sabbat Ritual

Click Here to return to the main page



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