Southern Hemisphere Beltane 2004

Roses at the entrance to my garden'

The turning Wheel now brings the Southern Hemisphere to the joyful feast of Beltane,
when Spring gives way to Summer.
1st.November is here equivalent to May Day
The whole world teems with life and energy, as the increasing warmth and light spurs everything to grow and reproduce while the earth is still moist with the winter rain.
As you can see from the photo, roses in Adelaide are at their very best at this time of year.
Those you see are richly scented Felicia, on the left, and Sparrishoop, deeper in colour, with larger single flowers.

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When I went into the garden on the night of the recent Full Moon the combined perfumes made my senses reel. I planted this combination of rose, honeysuckle, and jasmine so that I could enjoy their perfume, but I never dreamed just how potent it could be until the plants matured.
From early spring until mid-summer they literally fill the air with this amazing mixture of scents.
And by moonlight the pale flowers seem to be lit from within.
This is true magic!

I do however, feel saddened each October 31st. when radio, TV, and retailers inundate us, here in the South, with reminders of Hallowe'en - some even go so far as to call it Samhain.
Northern Hemisphere Samhain, celebrated on October 31st. and the 2 days following, is a celebration of the start of Winter.
Samhain, like the other fire festivals of Beltane, Lammas, and Lughnasad, go back at least 6,000 years, and are seasonal.
You can't have a winter festival in summer! The energy is completely opposed to what is being celebrated!
Samhain marks the end and the beginning of the Celtic Year, a time " between the worlds"
Hallowe'en followed by All Saints', and All Hallows also marks the end of of the Christian Liturgical year,
which resumes with Advent, the weeks of fasting which precede Christmas.
Before the colonisation and forced Christianisation of the Southern Hemisphere, this 'takeover' of the ancient calendars
by the Church at least synchronised with nature's own calendar.
Happily some churches downunder now have seasonal services in addition to those in the official church calendar.

At any one moment it is Sunrise for some of us, Sunset for others

But I am constantly amazed and affronted by the way the Northern Hemisphere carries on as though the South didn't exist.
The majority of books published which deal with The Wheel of the Year and Seasonal Festivals, including many otherwise good Astrology, Neo-pagan, and Pantheist texts simply ignore it.
And there are other seasonal cycles and traditional calendars which also lack acknowledgement. Those included in the traditional calendars now imposed upon the whole of the world are applicable only
to the temperate and Polar regions of the Earth.

How can we be One Planet if we don't acknowledge the realities of our spherical Earth?
We need to be aware of how different the circumstances of people around the can be, so that we can reach a better understanding of those who we are all too often swift to judge.
Let's remember that the world turns..................The World Turns  - click to go to Global Meditations.......GLOBAL MEDITATIONS


More about Solar and Lunar Festivals in Southern Australia


For myths, legends, & traditions from around the world,

And get the big picture at with these amazing ASTROPICS
from Eddie Guscott in the UK.

Solar Calendar

Solstice - 21st.December 12.43GMT

Lunar Calendar

Dark Moon - 12th.November 14.28 GMT 20 Scorpio 33'
Full Moon - 26th. November 20.08 GMT 4 Gemini 55'
Dark Moon - 12th.December 01.30 GMT 20 Saggitarius 22
Full Moon - 26th.December 15.07 GMT 5 Cancer 12'

New Moon occurs when the first slender crescent is visible in the East at sunset
usually 2-3 days after Dark Moon

These times are Greenwich Mean Time
Find your local time at the

Leaves and flowers

Here is more about the cycles of the Moon
from the Permaculture Association of South Australia's 1988 Calendar

butterflyInspirations (recently updated)

And a final thought, from the Introduction to the Designer's Manual, on Permaculture Design Philosophy:

"A person of courage today is a person of Peace.
The courage we need is to refuse authority, and to accept only personally responsible decisions."

with love from Margaret RainbowWeb

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