Today, Sunday May 1st, was celebrated as the Celtic First Day of Summer in honour of the Brythonic Goddess, Cordelia, of spring blossoms or the summer flowers. She was originally a sea goddess, daughter of Lir (Llyr), the sea god. Similar to the Greek Persephone.
"On May 1, when Cordelia appears, Gwythr, the god of air, and Gwyn, god of the underworld, engage in a battle over her."- Goddesses in World Mythology, by Martha Ann & Dorothy Myers Imel
The celebration was called Bealtaine or Beltane, the ancient pastoral festival held when the herds were turned out into the fields for the summer. The fertility rituals attracted witches and fairies, and celebrants had to be careful not to sleep outside on that night. This festival is still celebrated in the Scottish Highlands, Wales, Brittany and the Isle of Man.
According to The Woman's Dictionary of Symbols & Sacred Objects, the Maiden, Cordelia, was celebrated for her virgin or "flower" aspect, harbinger of the fruit to come. It was a time of "wearing of the green", in honour of Earth's new green garment, as well as a time of sexual license, symbolizing nature's fertilization: a honey-moon when marriage bonds were temporarily forgotten and sexual freedom prevailed in rural districts all the way up to the sixteenth century.
The Maypole, still known in the East as the god's phallus, was planted in Earth's womb and celebrated with dance and song. In northern Europe there were traditional "May ridings" featuring the King and Queen of May who represented Frey and Freya. Couples paired off and followed them into the woods for orgiastic encouragement of the new growth season.
Astrologically, as I write this post, the Sun is at 10 degrees of Taurus 37', the fixed earth sign that designates the actual Growing Season of Spring. The Moon is still in the Last QTR phase, sitting at 29 degrees Aquarius 45', just about to move into the mutable water sign of Pisces.
Venus, ruler of Taurus, sits at 01 degrees Taurus 56', with Mercury Rx and Vesta both sitting at 23 degrees of Taurus. Bring forth your Desire Body (Venus) and set about seeding that which you wish to grow this Spring and Summer. Where is the sign of Taurus in your chart? This is where new fertile desires grow for you personally this time each year.
We are also experiencing an Earth Grand Trine, connecting the Sun, and Mercury Rx with Vesta in Taurus to Pluto Rx in Capricorn and both Jupiter Rx and the North Node in Virgo - all within the elemental signs of earth. During Earth Grand Trine timings we tend to sensuality (Taurus) materialism (Capricorn) and/or a talent for business (Virgo). A Grand Trine brings 3 or more planets together within the same element, in this case earthy practical and hands-on energy to the fore. Hence itchy hands wanting to DO something - with the garden, houseplants, pruning trees, planting seeds and setting out plants to clearing out drawers, closets and moving furniture around (aka Spring Cleaning!).
Today feel with ALL your senses the warmth of the Sun's rays, hear the call of birdsong, smell the blossoms and budding tree leaves and grasses, and see the glory of God's and Cordelia's creations amid the colours, textures and structures. Can you also taste it? Celebrate the Bounty of Mother Earth all around you, no matter how that bounty is reflected within your bank account or kitchen cupboards at this moment. As Within, So Without.
Surround yourself with gratitude for the new fertile growth happening Within and Without. Return to that childlike wonder to 'see' with awestruck eyes the creation of Nature through the fairies and sprites and other magical creatures. Give thanks for their handi-work!
I honour Cordelia this day for all her fertile sensuousness that stirs me into further hands-on action within my home, my work, and my world.