Last night marked the transitional phase between the end of the lunar month Boedromion and the beginning of Pyanepsion. At this time Hekate is honoured with a small feast; usually a meal of eggs, onions, garlic as well as traditionally household sweepings, ash and other ritual detritus from househould shrines which were burnt at crossroads in Ancient Greece, in little clay censers.
Myself, I marked the occasion simply by spending some time with Hekate at her shrine. I offered incense and recited a prayer and then listened to Jade Sol Luna’s “Tales of the Witch Moon”. I usually try to keep it simple if the deipnon falls in the middle of the week as work gets in the way due to the odd hours I work; I make up for this on the occasions when I’m either off during a deipnon or it falls on Friday or the weekend.
During my time listening to Jade’s latest chants, I also made a start on creating the phylactery, an exercise laid out in Tara Sanchez’s book “The Temple of Hekate”, which I reviewed in a previous post. The phylactery, which is a simple braided thread/cord, is used to create a connection with the Goddess Hekate and to aid in protection. I bought some simple thread in white, black and red (the red was slightly “fancier” as it was made up of two types of thread itself) and proceeded to braid them together, as the exercise says that from the period between new and full moon, the phylactery should be worn about the person in order to imbue it with your own personal energies, before consecration at the full moon.
I’ve never braided before in my life – had to get a “how to” guide off the Internet – and it was painstakingly slow progress and it still didn’t turn out quite right. Perhaps some practice is in order, and if this phylactery fails to last between now and the full moon, I still have cord aplenty to make a new one, but I think it’s growing on me and the inconsistency of the braided just makes it more personable to me. I also made one for a friend which I will send to him to “scent” and then instruct him in the simple consecration ritual. I feel he could use some Hekatean energies in his life right now and although he has no connection with Hekate, she helps those in need – sometimes even when they haven’t out right asked for it.
For Noumenia, I ensured all my shrines were clean and tidy, placed fresh flowers to all the Gods on the main altar area. Various incenses were lit and I read aloud a number of prayers and hymns, always giving special thanks to either those Gods who have helped me in the last month and especially those who are more prominent in my life such as Hekate and Dionysos. Simple libations and food offerings are also made as well as the recreation of a fresh Kathiskos in honour of Zeus Ktesios.
Usually at Noumenia, I also will pick a card from my tarot deck as a focus and guide for the month ahead. I have thought lately on changing this slightly by each month drawing a card from a different tarot/oracle deck (as I do have quite a few). By doing this I can open myself up to not only the meaning of the card itself but the richness and variation of the different symbolism and imagery of the various decks in my (slowly expanding) collection. Some decks have a leaning towards Greek myth and imagery, others more traditional and still others which are original and somewhat radical in their appearance.
This Noumenia I decided to draw from the Gods & Titans deck (as the sister deck Goddesses & Sirens has just been released, it seemed fitting) and was very pleased to draw out Dionysos – Ecstacy! It helped reinforce my connection with Him which of late had felt tenuous and distant.