Beltane, also referred to as May Day, officially begins at moonrise on May Day Eve, April 30th, 2022, and extends into the evening of May 1st, 2022. Beltane marks the halfway point between the Spring Equinox and Summer Solstice. It is a halfway point of the ancient Celtic year, and one of the eight sabbats in the Wheel of the Year.
Historically, Beltane was widely observed throughout Ireland, Scotland, and the Isle of Man. In Irish, the name for the festival day is Lá Bealtaine. In Scottish Gaelic, it translated to Latha Bealltainn. And in Manx Gaelic, it translated to Laa Boaltinn/Boaldyn.
The word ‘Beltane’ originates from the Celtic God ‘Bel’, meaning ‘the bright one’ and the Gaelic word ‘teine’ meaning fire. Together they make ‘Bright Fire’, or ‘Goodly Fire’ and traditionally bonfires were lit to honor the Sun and encourage the support of Bel and the Sun’s light to nurture the emerging future harvest and protect the community.
Rituals were held to promote fertility to combine the passion of a bountiful bonfire in celebration of the union between the May Queen and the God of the Forest. Beltane celebrates unity between Gods and Goddesses, as well as soulful unions between divine counterparts and twin souls.
Handfasting, a known Celtic or Pagan ritual in which two are conjoined as one in an unofficial marriage ceremony, binding them to each other for a year and one day as a trial union, is often included in ceremony during Beltane. This is time to honor fertility, sexual union, sexuality, birth, rebirth, and regeneration.
Working with Sacral and Root Chakra energies can help us maintain alignment during this energizing time. We can also incorporate Moonstone crystals to harmonize these beautiful New Moon energies which also corresponds to fertility, motherhood, and pregnancy.
This years Beltane aligns with the New Moon/Solar Eclipse in Taurus, compounding the intensity of these receptive energies together. This is a very special time to welcome in new love, and reunify with those whom we have already sworn ourselves to. This happens simultaneously as we welcome in the Sun Moon Uranus in Taurus Conjunction, and Jupiter Neptune Venus in Pisces Conjunction.
Love is in the air!
Artist Credit: Helen Nelson Reed