Sekhmet's Lammas Ritual
August 4th, 2001
Unitarian Universalist Church of Ft Lauderdale
3970 NW 21st Avenue
Oakland Park, Florida 33309

HPS:     Sophia
HP:      Spelcastor

Note:    We are honored to have the hand fasting of Adam and Carol during
         this ritual.

Lavender Goddess will make the papers to pass out.

Patricia will pass out paper and tell everyone to write two things on it.
         "One that you want to banish from and one that you want to bring
          into your life."

         These papers will be burned on the fire.

Fire Tender:
         Joe will build and start the fire.

Ritual: Lammas Sabbat. First Harvest.  Life that dies so that life may live.
         It is common ritual to bake special ceremonial breads to honor
         the Gods and Goddesses. The grinding of the grain represents the
         harvest and death (or transition), adding sprouted wheat and yeast
         represents resurrection, and the consumption of the food represents
         the cycles of nature and new life.

         Honors the Grain Harvests and the Gods and Goddesses of Death and 
         Resurrection.

         Banishing/New Beginnings (transition) ritual.

         Full Moon Aug 4th, 2001, 12:56am.  Sun is 15 degrees in Leo
         on August 7th, 2001.
         Halfway between Litha (summer solstice) and Mabon (fall equinox).

         This eclectic ritual will be in honor of the Goddess Sekhmet.
         There will be elements of Egyptian, Wicca, and Strega rituals.

Goddess: Sekhmet
         The heliacal rise of Sirius just before dawn was an extremely
         important event for the ancient Egyptians.  This coincided with
         the flooding of the Nile which fertilized the land.  The occasion
         was seen as the birthday of the gods and the Egyptian New Year.
         August 1st now is the first day of the Egyptian calendar.

         Lammas and Samhain are the Egyptian Goddess Sekhmet's ritual times.
         There was great feasting, drinking, and merry making in the fields
         during her rituals to celebrate the harvest.  She is a Sun Goddess
         as well as the Goddess of destruction, rebirth, and healing.  She
         is called the Lady of the place of the beginning of time.  One who
         was before the Gods were.

         She holds an Ankh in one hand and a Lotus Wand in the other; She
         wears a red dress.  The God Ptah is her consort and Nefertem is
         their son who is also closely associated with healers and healing.

         Her Name is derived from the Egyptian word 'Sekhem', which means
         "power" or "might". The word 'sekhem' is literally inseparable
         from Sekhmet and Her worship.

         The mantra Sa Sekhem Sahu can be chanted to balance and increase
         your inner power. Sa Sekhem Sahu is pronounced Sa (Sah) Sekhem
         (Say-Kem) Sahu (Sah-Hoo); Sa means the breath of life; Sekhem
         means power or might; Sahu is the realized human.

         Sekhmet's main cult center was located in Memphis (Men-nefer) and
         was part of the Divine Triad there, which was made up of Sekhmet,
         Ptah, and Nefertem.

         Sekhmet's action is always the right, or 'appropriate action'.
         When She destroys it is an appropriate destruction or vengeance.
         It is never chaotic or random. It is always what is needed at
         the time.  She removes threats and punishes those who do wrong
         against Ma'at.

         As a destroying element, and in texts of all periods she plays
         the part of a power which protects the good and annihilates
         the wicked.

         She is generally depicted in the form of a woman with the head
         of a lioness which is surmounted by the solar disk encircled
         by an uraeus, but sometimes the disk is omitted, and a uraeus
         only is seen upon her head.

God: Ptah:
         Consort of Sekhmet.
         The 'Creator' Netjer of the Ancient Egyptians.
         God of the month of Paopi of the season of Akhet (Inundation),
         which was from approximately mid August to mid September.

Goddess of the
         East:  Bast.
         South: Nekhebet.
         West:  Sekhet.
         North: Uatchet.

         In comparatively late dynastic times Sekhet and Bast were identified
         with forms of Hathor, and were regarded as the goddesses of the West
         and the East respectively, just as Nekhe-bet and Uatchet were the
         goddesses of the South and the North respectively.  Each goddess had
         the head of a lioness, but the body of Sekhet is said to have been
         draped in a red garment whilst that of Bast was arrayed in a green
         garment.

Alter:
         Facing the north covered with a red cloth.
         Decorated with barley, corn, apples, green/yellow squash

         Red Goddess Candle placed to the northwest,
         Green God Candle placed to the northeast.  Icons next to each.

         Pentacle placed in center with the Spirit bowl and candle set
         upon it.

         Placed to the north: Utility knife, and Bowl contains stones
         to represent earth.

         Placed to the east: Wand, Bell, and Bowl contains incense (smoking)
         to represent air.

         Placed to the south: Athame, and Bowl contains votive candle
         (burning) to represent fire.

         Placed to the west: Chalice, and Bowl contains purified water to
         represent water.

         Other items: Ankh, Censer with chain, bowl of salt, four quarter
         candles, libation bowl, broom, one utility candle, and cauldron.

         Mundane tools: Utility knife, scared bic lighter, candle snuffer.

Cakes and ale:  Barley bread and Red beer (root beer and red soda)

Drummers: (all who bring drums within the circle area)
         Drum beat for the gathering.

Procession:
         Ken to carry banner and lead everyone into circle.

Volunteer to lead the chant.

         "She changes everything She touches
          and Everything She touches changes"

Drummers:
Drum beat for the chant.

Blessing coming into the circle while smudging:
Kaylie will smudge everyone and say:

         "Welcome to this Lammas rite, may your life always be bright".

HPS lights the utility candle.

Grounding meditation:
June will lead the meditation.

         "Relax, breath deeply.  Take a breath for the count of 3, hold
         for the count of 3, exhale for the count of 3.  Plant your feet
         firmly on the ground.  Think of your feet growing roots into the
         ground and getting relaxing energy from the earth.

         Now think of a brilliant white light over your head.
         That white light is shining down upon you.

         Imagine that you are being bathed in that white light.  That light
         is pouring down upon you.  That brilliant white light is love and
         healing.  Let that light be within you, and you be within that
         light.  You are getting relaxing energy from the earth and love and
         healing energy from the brilliant white light.  Now take a minute
         and see yourself on a big screen.

         You are exactly how you want to be.  Picture yourself with
         everything you want, wherever you want to be, surrounded by people
         who love you.  This is the you that you can become.  (Pause.)  Now
         when you are ready come back to this place, keep the relaxing,
         love, and healing energy with you, and open your eyes.".

Consecrate the salt and water (HP places point of athame in salt)

HP:
         "As Salt is Life, let it purify us in all ways we may use it.
          Let it cleanse our bodies and spirits as we dedicate ourselves in
          these rites to the glory of the Goddess and the God."

(HPS places three portions of salt in the water with her athame.)

HPS:
         "Let the Sacred Salt drive out any impurities in this Water,
          that we may use it throughout these rites."

Drummers:
Drum beat for casting the circle.

Cast the Circle:
     With blade: (HPS casts the Circle with athame moving deosil.)

         "I cast the circle round and round, by itís magic we are bound".

     With water and salt:  (Ruth takes up salt water.  Follows HPS around 
     the Circle):

         "Salt and water purify, Strength and Dreams, never die".

     With incense: (HP takes up censer and follows Ruth around the Circle.)

         "Air and fire purify, Imagination and Magick fly".

They return to alter and HPS rings bell three times.

Invite the Spirit, Goddess, and God of the Universe.

HPS:     "Let the Drums beat".
HP:      "Let the words be spoken".

HPS lights the Spirit candle in the spirit bowl from the utility candle.
         "Hail Great Spirit, Spirit of the Universe, I bid you come,
          join us in this rite and lend us your wisdom".

HPS lights the Goddess candle from the Spirit candle in the spirit bowl.
         "Hail Great Goddess, Goddess of the Universe, I bid you welcome."

HP lights the God candle from the Spirit candle in the spirit bowl.
         "Hail Great God, God of the Universe, I bid you welcome."

Invite the elements:
HP:      "Let's Invite the elements starting with the north".

NORTH:
HPS:     "Let the Drums beat".
HP:      "Let the words be spoken".
Rhiannon for north will stand in the south facing north.
North - (earth - Goddess Uatchet - Mountain Lioness)
         "Hail Goddess Uatchet of the North and Earth, great Mountain Lioness,
          I bid you, join us and give us strength.  So Mote it be".

HPS: lights the north quarter candle from the Spirit candle in the spirit 
bowl.

EAST:
HPS:     "Let the Drums beat".
HP:      "Let the words be spoken".
Mistypaw for east will stand in the west facing east.
East  - (air - Goddess Bast - Winged Lioness)
         "Hail  Goddess Bast of the East and Air, great Winged Lioness,
          I bid you, join us and give us insight.  So Mote it be".

HPS: lights the east quarter candle from the Spirit candle in the spirit 
bowl.

SOUTH:
HPS:     "Let the Drums beat".
HP:      "Let the words be spoken".
Eli for south will stand in the north facing south.
South - (fire - Goddess Nekhebet - Lioness)
         "Hail  Goddess Nekhebet of the South and Fire, great Lioness,
          I bid you, join us and give us magic power.  So Mote it be".

HPS: lights the south quarter candle from the Spirit candle in the spirit 
bowl.

WEST:
HPS:     "Let the Drums beat".
HP:      "Let the words be spoken".
Jodie for west will stand in the east facing west.
West  - (water - Goddess Sekhet - Sea Lioness)
         "Hail  Goddess Sekhet of the West and Water, great Sea Lioness,
          I bid you, join us and give us new beginnings.  So Mote it be".

HPS: lights the west quarter candle from the Spirit candle in the spirit 
bowl.

Invite the Goddess Sekhmet:

HPS:     "Let the Drums beat".
HP:      "Let the words be spoken".
HPS:

         "As it was at Memphis, So be it now!
          Hear me, I beseech Thee, O Powerful One!
          Hail Sekhmet,
          Bright Mother, Dark Mother... Goddess of rebirth and healing.
          We call to you, your children call to you.
          Come, be with us, and give us guidance".

         "Sekhmet, Lady of the Place of the Beginning of Time,
          Sekhmet, Whose Essence is Fire, Tempestuous, Forever, Great one of Magick,
          Grant me success in my endeavor!  Blessed be the Name of Sekhmet,
          Beloved Her Image! Possess me now, O Great One".


HP:   Says SEKHMET'S OWN PRAYER OF PROTECTION

         SEKHMET,
         Awakener,
         Lady of Transformations
         Great One of Magic,
         Opener of Ways,
         One Before Whom Evil Trembles,
         Protectress of the Divine Order,
         Over comer of All Enemies,
         Bring the Strength of your Divine Fire
         To protect your Beloved Children,
         Those whom you have gathered to your Breast.

         Our Hearts are Pure
         Our Minds Clear
         Let all Here be Accomplished
         For the Glory of Sekhmet,
         So we may better Delight in the Breadth
         Of Your Divine Presence within Our lives.

         Amen - So Mote It Be

Invite the God Ptah:

HP:      "Let the Drums beat".
HPS:     "Let the words be spoken".

HP:

         "Hail Ptah, God of Memphis and life, he who set all the Gods in
          their places and gave all people, all cattle, and all creeping
          things that live the breath of life, patron of masons, sculptors,
          painters, builders and carpenters, consort of Sekhmet, we call
          to you. Come, be with us, and give us new life".

______________________________
Handfasting of Adam and Carol.
------------------------------

After the handfasting is complete:
Explain the purpose of the Lammas ritual:

HP:

         "This is the first harvest.
          We now reap what we have sown.  A time for rejoicing.
          We invite you to share our harvest.
          The first of three harvests before winter is upon us.
          The first crops are cut in the fields.
          The plants die as the fields are reaped.
          Look at the fields of your life.
          This is the time to look within yourself.
          Look at what you have sown and are now reaping.
          You are harvesting the sowing of your past deeds and words.
          This is the time to cultivate
          positive deeds and words for the future".


HP:      "Have you sown well?"

HPS:     "Have you tended your fields with care?"

HP:      "What do you fear?"

Chant three times by everyone:

         "Hoof and horn,
          Hoof and horn,
          All that dies shall be reborn.

          Wheat and grain,
          Wheat and grain,
          All that falls shall rise again".

HPS:  Explain the Banishing/NewBeginnings Ritual:

         "This is a Banishing/NewBeginnings ritual.
          This is the time to rid yourself of deeds, words, feelings, and
          emotions that produced ineffective harvest.  Now is the time to
          replace those deeds, words, feelings, and emotions, with ones which
          will be effective to bring success, happiness and joy into your life.

          Everyone has written something on paper that you want to banish
          from your life and bring into your life.  Think hard about what
          you want to replace in your life and what you want to replace it
          with.  Banish the things that are keeping you from becoming what
          you want to be.

          Think about what and who you want to become. Put those thoughts
          into the paper in your hand.   The energy will be in the paper even
          if nothing is written on the paper.  These will be burned in the
          fire and as they burn the energy will go into the universe.  We
          will start a chant.  During the chant when you are ready come
          forward and light the paper from the candle and drop it into the
          cauldron to finish burning.   As you leave the cauldron then join us
          as we will then have a spiral dance".

HPS:     "Let the Drums beat".
Drummers:
         Drum beat for raising energy during the chanting and the spiral dance.

LavenderGoddess to lead banishing chant as everyone comes forward to burn 
their paper:

         "Magick, Magick, what we claim.
          Into the Paper into the flame".

LavenderGoddess leads in a spiral dance as the drummersí drum.

After the dance is done all say:

         "And As We Will It, So Mote It Be!"

Dedicate the Bread:

HPS:     "Behold the Bread of Life,
          Eat of the Bread of Life, that you might live through the long 
          winter's Night".

HP:      "Eat of the Bread of Life, that you might live through the long
          winter's Night".

Dedicate the Apple Juice:

HPS:     "Behold the Juice of Life,
          Drink of the Juice of Life, that you might live through the long 
          winter's Night."

HP:      "Drink of the Juice of Life, that you might live through the long
          winter's Night".

HPS:     "The bread and juice that is left, offer to Her, Mother Earth,
          so that Her creatures may live through the long nights ahead".

HP   Fills Alter chalice and libation dish with the apple juice.

Great Rite:
HPS holds chalice.  HP places athame into chalice.

HPS:     "As the chalice is to Goddess

HP:      "The athame is to the God

HPS HP:  "In like fashion may male join with female for the happiness of
          both".

HPS holds athame.  HP holds up plate of cakes.

HPS  Touches each with athame and puts one in the libation dish.

HPS & HP: offer each other the cakes and ale (bread and juice)

         "Will you share the bounty of the Goddess and God with me?"

HPS:     "Will the volunteers please come forward for the cakes and ale?"

HPS and HP hand: cups to Jenny, Hidea.   ; ale to Daniel, Pat, Brian   ; 
                 cakes to Ben, Sher.

HPS:     "This food is the blessing of the Gods to our bodies.  Let us partake 
          of it freely. And as we share, let us remember always that we share
          with those who have nothing."

HPS:     "Let the Drums beat".

Drummers:
Drum beat while cakes and ale are distributed.

Cups passed out by Jenny, Hidea, (plus 2 others)
ALE poured by Daniel, Pat, Brian, (plus 1 other)
CAKES passed out by Ben, Sher, (plus 2 others)

         "Will you share the bread of life with me?"
         "Will you share the juice of life with me?"

(All drink) (All eat) (announcements)

Farewell to Ptah:

HP:      "Hail God Ptah.
          Thank you for being with us tonight,
          for the gift of life that you have given us.
          Hail and farewell.  Blessed Be."

Farewell to Sekhmet:

HPS:     "Hail Goddess Sekhmet.
          Thank you for being with us tonight,
          for the Blessings you have given us, and the gift of guidance.
          Hail and farewell.  Blessed Be."

Farewell to the elements

HPS:     "Let's bid Farewell to the elements starting in the west"

West  - (water - Goddess Sekhet - Sea Lioness)
HPS:     "Let the Drums beat".
HP:      "Let the words be spoken".
         "Hail  Goddess Sekhet of the West and Water, great Sea Lioness,
          Thank you for attending our rite.  Hail and Farewell.  Blessed Be".
(the West quarter candle is extinguished)

South - (fire - Goddess Nekhebet - Lioness)
HPS:     "Let the Drums beat".
HP:      "Let the words be spoken".
         "Hail  Goddess Nekhebet of the South and Fire, great Lioness,
          Thank you for attending our rite.  Hail and Farewell.  Blessed Be".
(the South quarter candle is extinguished)

East  - (air - Goddess Bast - Winged Lioness)
HPS:     "Let the Drums beat".
HP:      "Let the words be spoken".
         "Hail  Goddess Bast of the East and Air, great Winged Lioness,
          Thank you for attending our rite.  Hail and Farewell.  Blessed Be".
(the East quarter candle is extinguished)

North - (earth - Goddess Uatchet - Mountain Lioness)
HPS:     "Let the Drums beat".
HP:      "Let the words be spoken".
         "Hail  Goddess Uatchet of the North and Earth, great Mountain Lioness,
          Thank you for attending our rite.  Hail and Farewell.  Blessed Be".
(the North quarter candle is extinguished)

Farewell to the Spirit, Goddess, and God of the universe:

HP:      "Let the Drums beat".
HPS:     "Let the words be spoken".

HP:      "Hail Great God, God of the universe.
          Thank you for being with us tonight.
          Hail and Farewell.  Blessed Be".
(the God candle is extinguished)

HPS:     "Hail Great Goddess, Goddess of the universe.
          Thank you for being with us tonight.
          Hail and Farewell.  Blessed Be".
(the Goddess candle is extinguished)

HPS& HP:"Hail Great Spirit, Spirit of the universe.
          Thank you for being with us tonight,
          for the gift of wisdom that you have given us.
          Hail and Farewell.  Blessed Be".
(the Spirit candle is extinguished)

Close the circle:  Starwind to lead in singing  (Three times)

         "The circle is open but not unbroken.
          May the love of the Goddess be ever in your heart,
          Merry Meet, and Merry Part And Merry Meet again!"

          "Blessed Be"

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