RITES OF PERSEPHONE: PART III

THE RETURN

Here is our Spring Equinox Oracular Reading by Memorie Ov Eden:

ORPHIC HYMN TO THE SEASONS:

Daughters of Jove and Themis, Seasons bright,

Justice and blessed Peace and lawful Right.

Vernal and grassy, vivid holy pow’rs,

Whose balmy breath exhales in lovely flow’rs.

All-colour’d Seasons, rich increase your care,

Circling for ever flourishing and fair.

Invested with a veil of shining dew,

A flow’ry veil delightful to the view.

Attending Persephone when back from night,

The Fates and Graces lead her up to light.

When in a band harmonious they advance,

 And joyful round her form the solemn dance.

With Ceres triumphing and Jove divine,

Propritious come, and our incense shine;

Give earth a store of blameless fruits to bear,

And make these novel mystics’ life your care.

Our Rites of Persephone culminate with the arrival of Spring, at the Vernal Equinox, a Full Moon Lunar Eclipse and two final Seeds of Wisdom to ingest for the completion of our rites of metamorphosis and empowerment. If you have made it this far with the ritual process, I commend you. It takes a great deal of self love to show up for yourself so deeply, so fully. I hope you enjoy the following prompts and they help you to find yourself in the best place you can possibly be at the potent turning of the wheel. 

SEED 5: JUSTICE

“Take refuge sweet soul, in my garden of darkness and rest. Know that the scales of justice will eternally tip to bring retribution to those that harm, and peace to those that love.”

PRAXIDIKE, meaning Exacter of Justice is a title given to Persephone that portrays her as an advocate for justice, and a defender of the vulnerable who offers retribution. It suggests that she values fairness and integrity, ensuring actins meet their consequences. Homer describes her in the Odyssey as a ‘dreaded Poserpine (Persephone).’ At first glance, this may sound menacing and wicked but in fact could allude to fair punishment handed to souls for their wicked deeds, in which case Persephone was only a cause for dread if you had committed wrong doings. Any repercussions that they bring upon themselves are their own doing, they receive what they have earnt in life. Homer also describes her as the ‘majestic Queen of the Shades.’ Shades in Greek mythology refers to the spirits or souls that reside in the Underworld; as Queen, Persephone has a duty of care to the shades. She is a protector to the innocent and pure, ensuring that they have a fitting afterlife. 

Working with Persephone in her role as exacter of justice teaches us to think about how our actions affect others, or ourselves in the future. Bringing more consciousness to our choices is a way to examine our options and make wise decisions. Choices ought to be weighed up based upon what we know to be true through the evidence we have available. The desire to pursue the truth and question everything helps us to live responsibly by thinking critically about what we see. There is a wealth of information at our fingertips, but we have to delve deeper to discern truth from fallacy. There is an element of karma to the notion of justice, that acting ethically has positive consequences and acting without ethics has negative consequences. 

Persephone the infernal Queen of justice asks us to examine how we act in life, does our moral  compass point in the right direction? Just as Persephone brings balance to the Earth with the seasonal cycle, she can bring balance to our lives though her judgements, and it is up to us weather that karmic balance owed to us is favorable or not. However, receiving negative karma is not about punishment for the sake of punishment. It is an opportunity to learn and grow. Our actions have a ripple effect in the world, whether we choose to notice or ignore this. Once we examine how negative consequences could be the result of our own actions, we gain wisdom and knowledge that allows us to make better decisions moving forward. Rather than repeating the same mistakes over again, we can break out of our destructive behavior patterns and work towards establishing healthier, positive behaviors.

To delve deeper into how you wish to manifest justice energy into your life, make use of these journal prompts to explore further. They will help you to hone in on your intentions for the Equinox Ritual as well:

JUSTICE JOURNAL PROMPTS:

– How would I describe my personal code of ethics?

– How often do I verify the truth when presented with information?

– When confronted with information that challenges what I thought I knew, how does it make me feel?

– What does my most ethical self look like?

– When faced with difficult tasks, how do I handle them?

– Do I do the ‘right thing’ even when nobody’s watching?

– Do I keep to my word when I make promises?

SEED 6: FERTILITY

Ascend from the deep recesses of the earth, as the Phoenix rises from the ashes. Awaken from your winter slumber to be born again, renewed by fertile darkness. Feel the sun’s warmth against your skin as it illuminates you, glowing in all of your fresh, vibrant glory. Now is the time to plant the seeds of your intention; these are the days to be playful and carefree, enjoying the pleasures of natures ripe bounty. 

Kore takes on the name Persephone when she steps into her power as the venerable, commanding Queen of the Underworld. Equal in her power however is the ‘light’ side of Persephone, the Goddess of Spring, the maiden reborn. It might be easy to overlook the influence of the maiden aspect of the Goddess particularly when she is depicted as a helpless girl ant the whim of others or an object of sexual desire. This side to the Goddess is equally potent though and shouldn’t be neglected; it is Persephone’s duality that makes her so dynamic because she is the essence of life and creation as well as death.

The maiden is youthful, fresh and naive. Innocent and pure, she transitions from childhood to the cusp of womanhood; viewing the world through sparkling eyes of wonder and delight. The world is brand new to her and she eagerly explores, hungry to experience as much as she can. Unjaded by the trials of life, she is exuberant with joy. The maiden archetype can represent sexual awakening, and is seen as an object of desire for those who wish to corrupt innocence or who see virginity as a prize to be won. The focus of sexual purity on the maiden can lead us to feel disconnected from this archetypal energy; if we are older we may feel what we won’t identify with her., that she has nothing to teach us in her youthful folly. However, the maiden energy is not limited to sexual awakening, it s about awakening anything that is new to you, be that spiritual or tangible. There is an intense creativity and joy to the maiden goddess, we embody her whenever we take that first step into an un-walked path. She can aid us when we want to embark on a journey of self discovery, bring a new venture into fruition or break out of a cycle of stagnant dullness. The maiden walks beside us each time we begin something new, and if we tap into her beautiful energetic essence, we can flourish like a flower tended by the hand of Persephone herself. There are times for introspection and stillness, and there are times to bloom and enjoy the lighter side of life. The maiden invites us to get in touch with our inner child, to consciously choose pleasure and enjoyment, reconnecting with our playful sides and breaking away from monotony. 

HONORING THE MAIDEN GODDESS:

Beautiful, young and sprightly, the maiden Goddess reawakens the sleeping earth with her presence Animals stir from their winter hibernation, plants shoot forth from the soil and the days grow warmer. Spring is a very welcome visitor after the somber stillness of winter and blankets the earth in an aura of renewal and vitality. The Goddess of Spring rules over fertility; not just the conception of life but success, abundance and fruitful enterprise. She can assist you with new beginnings, creative endeavors and rebirth. Connecting with this fresh, vital spring energy invites prosperity into your life and encourages you to step from the shadows of your unconscious mind into the light of your consciousness. Even if you feel there is more inner work to be done on your journey to wholeness, everyone needs their days in the sun. The journey to wholeness is after all, a voyage that lasts a lifetime.

The maiden aspect of Persephone can be called upon any time you need her energy, but her energy is most potent at with the arrival of spring. 
WAYS TO CONNECT WITH MAIDEN PERSEPHONE:

~ Try something new. Stay curious, seek out new ideas and keep an open mind to fresh experiences.

~ Indulge in pleasure. Take time out to be playful and carefree, indulging in an activity that brings you pleasure, with no motive other than sheer enjoyment. Give yourself permission to be joyful and happy; stepping out of a serious, introspective mindset is nurturing for the mind and soul. Delving into our inner depths is important for growth, but so too is nurturing ourselves with periods of contentment and ease. Visit a beauty spot and drink in the glorious views. Spend time in the company of children or good friends who will laugh hard with you. Carve out time to do the things that make you feel glad to be alive; if you’re not sure what those things are then perhaps spend some time getting to know yourself and discovering what sparks pleasure and joy within yourself. Maiden energy is all about self discovery.

~ Revive a forgotten hobby. Connecting with something that brought you joy as a child or teen is likely to ignite nostalgia within you; enjoy these innocent, comforting memories and remember how you felt at this point in your life. It could be something as simple as watching a favorite childhood movie or visiting a place your used to go. Remember your maiden self through these forgotten pastimes. 

~ Map your transformation. The maiden Spring Goddess asks us to examine what areas of our life need fertility. Where have we become stagnant or resistant to change? How do we want to grow? Fertility is all about growth, and growth occurs when we accept progression. It’s human nature to develop habits and routines; comfort is derived from the familiarity of repetitive processes but it is healthy for us to be occasionally challenged. To gain clarity over the parts of our lives we want to transform, we need to have a clear picture of what we want to alter. Consider creating a mind map. Write down one thing at a time that you are dissatisfied with and ponder what you can do to transform this aspect into something that is pleasing to you. Committing your thoughts to paper also helps you to organize and make sense of them. 

~ Attune with Nature. Get outside and walk barefoot on the grass, touch the trees and admire the plush green beauty of the natural world. A little bit of reasearch into locally grown, seasonal plants can keep you in synch with your environment. Bring plants into your home, grow herbs on your windowsill and observe the waxing and waning of the moon. All of these small actions combined can help to foster a connection with the earth, which is crucial to working with the energy of a fertility Goddess. 

MAIDEN JOURNAL PROMPTS:
– What do I want to achieve this year?

– What makes me feel energetic and vital?

– Which areas of my life do I want to invigorate?

– How will I spread joy and light in the world?

ALTAR SUGGESTIONS:

We began with red for our passionate underworld journey, then transitioned to white for our rites of purification. Now we synergize them into maidenly power pink.

Feel free to incorporate all three (red white and pink) for a unification of the 3 phases.

SYMBOLS:

Anything that portrays JUSTICE: Scales, athame, knife, sword or letter opener.

Anything that portrays FERTILITY, budding flowers, coins, spring blossoms, eggs.

TAROT CARDS:

Strength Card on the Left, Personal Significator for the year in the center, Empress Card on the Right.

COLORS:

Pink, Red, White & Black (black and white to represent balance and justice)

HERBS & OTHER PLANT ALLIES:

Eucalyptus – Clarity of thought

Snow Drops – Purity & protection 

Cherry Blossoms – Ethereal, gentle, delicate femininity.

Spring Magnolias – Abundance, growth, fertility, self-reliance, splendor.

Pomegranate – Persephone & Fertility

CRYSTALS & GEMS:

Clear Quartz, Rose Quartz, Ruby, Garnet, Pink Tourmaline, Obsidian

SPRING EQUINOX + VENUS EXALTED IN PISCES + LUNAR ECLIPSE IN LIBRA 

When Venus — the planet of love and relationships — glides into dreamy Pisces from March 11th to April 4th, fantasies abound. The planet of beauty is exalted in the sign of the artist, mystic, and visionary, meaning it operates at the peak of its powers. Venus in Pisces likes to gush at full force and offer its heart completely to anyone and anything it adores. Too much is never enough. Think: transcendent love poetry, adornment as a romantic ritual, and heightened artistic inspirations that keep it up into the night. This placement is drawn to seek twin flames and soulmates — whether with intimate partners, best friends, muses, or the whirling cosmos itself. A sense of exquisite fatedness ripples out behind every swish of these convivial fins.

However, even boundlessness has its limitations. This placement’s ability to merge entirely with others can equate to either ultimate closeness or a dangerous dissolution of boundaries. Losing oneself in another can erode personal sovereignty and result in confusion about whose needs and desires are whose. Extra discernment is required here, along with a sturdy anchor in reality. When it’s functioning in a balanced way, this placement is miraculously capable of being receptive and compassionate while still honoring and protecting its own unique point of view.

For the Spring Equinox 2024, the energies of this time are heightened by the upcoming Libra Lunar Eclipse on March 25th. Although this Eclipse is almost a week away from the Equinox, we tend to feel Eclipses up to a month before and a month after they arrive.

Eclipses tend to bring high intensity, transformative energy that can rattle and upend our lives. Eclipses can affect us all differently, but on some level, we all experience a transformation.

The March 25th Eclipse is one of endings, and our focus may be centered around a relationship or relationship dynamics that we have been playing out through our childhood wounding. This Eclipse can help to unravel these inner workings and bring to our attention all that needs to be completed so we can create the relationships we desire. There is a lot of sweetness surrounding this eclipse too, with a sextile between Jupiter and Venus blessing us with avenues of grace within this potent time of metamorphosis within matters of the heart.

THE RITUAL:

(Created with the intention of being carried out on or around the Spring Equinox)

Treat yourself to a cleansing milk bath with rose petals, bergamot and vanilla with a mud mask while you soak.

Bonus points if you make yourself a brew of Rose, Vanilla & Pomegranate tea to drink during the ritual, and I encourage you to dress in pink or white in a way that invokes the Maiden Goddess essence within you.

Set up your Goddess of Spring altar by clearing away whatever is there and refreshing everything. Cleanse the table space and set your dish of earth from the previous rituals set in the center. Add your blossoms all around leaving space for further items.

GATHER YOUR TOOLS

A pomegranate

Athame or blade

4 candles:

1 black – Underworld + Night + Moon

1 white – Purity + Day + Sun

1 red– Exalted Venus + Passion & Sovereignty

1 pink – Persephone as Maiden Goddess

Blank petition paper & a pen

Incense of Sandalwood, vanilla, rose or ylang ylang (or all of them)

Essential oils of Rose (Venus), Frankincense (Purity) and Pomegranate (Persephone) Amber, Cypress or Narcissus (Hades)

Anoint each candle: Black with Amber, Cypress or Narcissus | Red with Rose | White with Frankincense | Pink with Pomegranate.

Carve into your black candle the names Hades & Shadow with the symbol of Pluto and the moon.

Carve into your white candle the words Purity & Justice with the symbols of the Sun and a sword.

Carve into your red candle the name Venus with her symbol + passion & sovereignty

Carve into your pink candle the symbol of Persephone shared in the Rites of Persephone Power Prompts Part I and carve a pomegranate at the top (circle with a little crown on top) and the words Maiden Goddess + Fertility.

WRITE YOUR PETITIONS

A petition for Hades and one word that will benefit you most in relinquishing for good. Fold it away from you, turn counter clockwise, fold it away from you again, turn counter-clockwise, fold one more time, turn counter-clockwise and draw upon the top of it the symbol of Pluto. Place it underneath your black candle on the left side of your altar folded away from you.

A petition for Venus and one word that will benefit you most in becoming more passionately &/or loving. Fold it towards you, turn it clockwise, fold it towards you again, turn clockwise, fold one more time, turn clockwise and draw upon the top of it the symbol of Venus. Place it underneath your red candle at the center back of your altar behind the dish of earth folded towards you. 

A petition for the Sun/Helios with one word that will benefit you most for staying true to your path of truth and justice. Repeat the folding and rotating actions that you did for your Venus petition. Draw the symbol of the sun on top of it and place beneath your white candle at the right side of your altar folded towards you.

A petition for Persephone with one word that will benefit you most for stepping fully into your Maidenhood era. Repeat the folding and rotating actions that you did for your last two petitions. Draw the symbol of Persephone on top of it and place it on top of your dish of earth folded towards you.

Cut open your pomegranate into four quarters and place it atop your petition on the dish of earth.

Place your pink Persephone candle in the center of your pomegranate.

Take 1 seed from your Pomegranate and place it on or in front of your dagger to represent justice. 

Light your candles and recite: With black “Hades I offer this (word you wrote on your petition) to you.” With red “Venus grant me this (word you wrote on your petition to her).” With white “Helios grant or guide me with (word you wrote on your petition to the sun).” With pink “Persephone bless me with (word you wrote on your petition to her).”

Light your incense, close your eyes and envision it being received by each of these deities.

You can say the following incantation should you feel called to do so:

FROM THE ORPHIC HYMNS:

(Add a few drops of each of your oils to the cup of water & holding your cup of water recite)

Daughter of Jove, Persephone Divine,

Come, blessed queen and to these rites incline:

Only-begotten, Pluto’s honour’d wife,

O venerable Goddess, source of life:

Tis thine in earth’s profundities to dwell, 

Fast by the wide and dismal gates of hell.

Jove’s holy offspring, of a beauteous mien,

Avenging Goddess, subterranean queen.

The Furies’ source, fair-hair’d, whose frame proceeds

From Jove’s ineffable and secret seeds.

Mother of Dionysus, sonorous, divine,

And many-form’d, the parent of the vine.

Associate of the Seasons, essence bright,

All-ruling virgin, bearing heav’nly light.

With fruits abounding, of a bounteous mind,

Horn’d, and alone desir’d by those of moral kind.

O vernal queen, whom grassy plains delight,

Sweet to the smell and pleasing to the sight:

Whose holy form in budding fruits we view, 

Earth’s vig’rous offspring of a various hueL

Espous’d in Autumn, life and death alone

To wretched mortals from thy pow’r is known:

For thine the task, according to thy will,

Life to produce, and all that lives to kill.

Hear, blessed Goddess, send a rich increase 

Of various fruits from earth, with lovely Peace:

Send Health with gentle hand, and crown my life 

With blest abundance, free from noisy strife;

Last in extreme old age the prey of Death,

Dismiss me willing to the realms beneath,

To thy fair palace and the blissful plains

Where happy spirits dwell, and Pluto reigns. 

~ Anoint yourself with the water and consecrate your blade and any talismans you would like to bless with it. 

Place your pomegranate seed on the tip of your blade and feed it to yourself holding the word on your Sun/Justice petition in your minds eye as you eat it, then speak it.

Pour the rest of the water around your Pomegranate while saying the words from your Venus and Persephone petitions and holding visions of them in your minds eye.

Eat your final Pomegranate seed straight from the Pomegranate at the center of your altar.

“HAIL PERSEPHONE!”

Allow yourself to dance freely, welcoming the Maiden Goddess into your movements, your mind and your heart. Allow yourself to be embraced by her, to merge with her… And even better if you can take this party outside.

Pull some cards – click on the following link to access the Coven Equinox Tarot Spread created for us by Memorie Ov Eden:

Once your candles have burned all the way down, bundle the remnants with your sacred earth and all of your intentions and bury them somewhere on your property or a site that is sacred to you. If you feel called to add any extra seeds for plants to grow with it, choose something meaningful for you to grow and place the seeds near the bundle within the earth.

Blessed Equinox Witches!

All my love,

~Tiare