Soon we will be approaching one of my favourite times of the year – Beltane, which occurs on April 30th – May 1st.
In terms of the Pagan Wheel of the Year, this Fire Festival is, I think, one of the most fun!
Apart from dancing round maypoles, making merry and drinking, it’s the right time to make a big bonfire too, outside of the usual time of November 5th and I do love a good fire!
Last year to celebrate this all important phase of the year I took myself up to Edinburgh with a good friend to embrace the Beltane Fire Festival which takes place here ( spectacularly I might add ) year on year.
But what is Beltane, and how is it in any way relevant to the tarot?
A brief potted history then.
Beltane represents the peak of Springtime and the beginning of Summer. The Earth’s energies are at their strongest and therefore, everything around us is emergent, pulsating and growing right beneath our feet.
All this abundant fertility is honoured in its metaphorical climax , through the joining together of the masculine and the feminine principle.
The Maiden goddess is about to become the May Bride ( The May Queen), as the young Oak King, Jack-In-The-Green, or the Green Man, woos her, wins her and their union is consummated, which in the fullness of time ( no pun intended) culminates in her pregnancy.
We are, therefore, in the realms of passion, growth, prosperity, vitality and joy. In terms of the Tarot, we would use The Sun , The Empress and The Ten of Cups to represent all this joyfulness, harmony, fun, frivolity and fecundity. Should you encounter anyone of these cards in a reading there are good times ahead.
In terms of using the tarot as a tool for your questioning, think perhaps about how you would ideally like to grow as a person, or in terms of relationships how you’d envisage a union between someone you have your ‘eye on’.
If thinking about business or career, imagine your desires beginning from a small, single, creative thought process, and now blossoming into something huge, wonderful and productive.
But Beltane is also a Fire Festival and as we know, fire can cleanse and destroy, therefore the focus in readings at this time can also be on renewal, rebirth, regeneration, a casting out of old ( bad..?) habits and making way for a new start, a purge, a cleanse, followed by a spectacular new beginning….
If you’d like to find out more about this fantastic spectacle go here.
Enjoy Beltane , I know I will!
*Some photos Copyright of The Beltane Fire Society