Elder Moon: Celtic Tree Calendar
The Elder Moon is the last month in the cycle of the 13 Celtic months, and it indicates the renewal of energy and the continuous journey of the soul towards greater happiness and understanding. The Winter Solstice, the shortest day and longest night, occurs during the Elder Moon, and offers the chance to focus on your heart’s desire.
The Elder Moon is a time to bring a halt to habit-forming patterns that have been restricting your growth, so that you may heal and move on. Evaluate what you have learned during the past year and give yourself time to work out what you really want from life. Draw upon energy that concludes the annual cycle and release the energy you have invested in previous projects and endeavours, so that you may concentrate on conceiving your new dreams for the New Year.
Tree of life and death
The elder tree’s ability to recover when damaged has made it a symbol of regeneration since ancient times and for this reason it was used in burial rites in British longbarrows (an ancient style of grave). Due to to its white flowers (life) and black berries (death), the tree is also sacred to the Mother Goddess who governs birth and death.
The wood of elder is believed to have protective properties because of the powerful Dryad spirit that lives within it. When planted near a home, the tree will ward off intruders. The healing powers of the elder are also thought to cure insomnia (by placing elderberries in a bad under a pillow) and ensure the health of unborn babies (when pregnant women kiss its bark).
Elder Moon energy
Use the powers of the elder tree to bring a sense of completion to the old year and a feeling of renewal for the start of the next cycle.
Review the year
Try these simple rituals to bring a sense of completion to your Celtic lunar year.
- Review the last 13 Moon, writing down what you have learned from each. Acknowledging your lessons will help you move on.
- Areas of your life that feel unfulfilled indicate stuck energy. Hold a quartz crystal and direct love towards your current job, cramped flat, or credit card bill. New opportunities will appear as if my magic.
- Resolve difficult relationships by writing a letter to the soul of the person with whom you are in conflict. This helps to clear the way for change. Then burn the letter.
Use this charm to repel unwanted attention and harassment during the party season.
- Collect together five tiny elder twigs, a white ribbon, a white candle and a strand of your hair.
- Light the candle saying, “White light surround me, safe I will stay.”
- Drip the wax onto one of the elder twigs and press your hair into it before it dries.
- Surround the twig with the others, making a small bundle.
- Secure the twigs with the white ribbon saying, “As I will it, so mote it be.”
- Slip the protection charm into your party handbag and you’re ready to go.
upon reaching the end of the Celtic calendar, the Elder Moon month is the perfect time to release negative energies before entering the New Year, feeling renewed.
- Dig a hole in the ground and say, “Mother Earth, I ask you to transform my pain into healing.”
- Place a photo of yourself and a drawing, or written account, of any negative incidents into the hole.
- Speak or shout your feelings into the hole.
- When you feel ready place an elder twig into the hole to represent the end of the cycle.
- Fill in the hole and stamp the earth down three times saying, “I release the past, so mote it be.”
Elder tree blessing
Use this blessing to heal an environment where there has been an argument, accident, illness or shock.
- Gather together some elderberries and leaves.
- Face the north and say, “I call upon the guardians of the earth to bless this place.” Throw some elderberries and leaves towards the north.
- Turn to the east and repeat the ritual, this time calling upon the guardians of air.
- Turn to the south and repeat, calling upon the guardians of fire.
- Finally turn to the west and call upon the guardians of water.
- End the blessing by randomly scattering the remaining elderberries and leaves.