The rite starts with the men standing behind the alter, lit by one candle.

The women enter carrying lighted candles, and form a crescent near the threshold.

Men: I am the lord of death. Who enter my realm?

Women: I bring the promise of light, of rebirth, of abundant life, and the harvest yet to come.

Men: You and your gifts are accepted. What would you have from this realm of darkness?

Women: Accept my light, and fulfill my promise.

First women approaches alter, and hands a candle to a man, who accepts. All men similarly accept candles from other girls.

The men next form a circle of light and life. The women pass from each man to the next and gives him her left hand.

Drums begin: All hold the fruit and grain they bring and dance around the alter and place the candle and fruit on the alter.

HPS stops dancing.

Open circle in the usual manner.

Sanctify those who are within.

Invocation to the higher forces.

Invocation to the God and Goddess.

HPS: Know yet that we have brought light and fruition to this darkness: life to death: fertility to barrenness. By the visit of the lady comes yet another death – – the death of summer, reaping of its crops; tumbling down of all bright fruits, the draining of life’s green which still adorns the trees – – All these in their turn must die.

Yet ye must know that all these things also bring life. Our earth is pregnant, near to her time with fruit, the seeds of the new year. Those who receive the gifts are assured of next year’s birth.

HP: Let us know that each man contains both life and death. As we walk freely in the shades of the neverworld, so may we walk freely through the darkness of ourselves. Let us admit to our daylight time the thoughts of our darkest dreams. Life sets its face to death; and death again to life. Each holds to each; light casting shadow.


May we, being clean in body,

Now cast from us all malignancy and hindrance.

That we stand upright in the knowledge of our divine Nature.

For ever mind, water purifies the body – –

But the scourge of life purifies the soul.


Dancing and Feast