Updated: Aug 21
“The world is full of magic things, patiently waiting for our senses to grow sharper.” -W.B. Yeats
From Skye Alexander´s ¨Your Goddess Year¨ book:
Dates for inviting her: July 31-August 6
The ancient Celts celebrated their beloved goddess Aine on August 1, at the harvest festival Lughnasadh (also known as Lammas). On this day, she is said to have created gran and given it to the Irish people. She is also honored on the summer solstice.
Aine´s name means ¨joy¨ ¨splendor¨ and ¨radiance,¨ Celtic mythology originally linked her with the sun and later the moon. However, she plays many roles in legends, and over time, her associations and responsibilities grew. One of her jobs was to preside over the land, ensuring its fertility. She also protected crops and livestock. Naturally, the agrarian people of early Ireland revered her, for they depended on her benevolence for their very existence. In many cultures, we find goddesses who brought grain to their people, the Greek´s Demeter for example, and in Irish legends, Aine gets credit for creating this important crop. She did it in a rather unusual way, however, she literally gave birth to wheat as if it were her baby.
Celtic lore also describes Aine as a healer. Some stories say the goddess walked the land, offering healing and solace to all who needed it. Her favorite spot was Lough Gur, a lake in Ireland´s County Limerick near her sacred hill Croc Aine, which reputedly contained magical properties. There, people came during the full moon to be cured in the healing waters, much as people around the world still ¨take the waters¨ at spas and mineral springs.
On the night of the full moon, the goddess rode horseback with her two sisters, Fenne and Grainne, through sacred land in County Limerick. According to folklore, the red-haired Aine was also a shapeshifter, who could turn herself into the red mare Lair Derg, whom none could catch.
Aine also knew the secrets of sacred sex and shared them ith mortal men as well as deities. Some say her liaisons produced a race that blended human blood with that of the fairies, who lived in sidhe, or burrows, in Croc Aine. According to one legend, the goddess married the Irish Earl of Desmond and bore a remarkable son, who may have been the fabled magician Merlin.
Do you feel in need of nourishment and support, in body, mind, or spirit? Are your heartfelt desires and passionate goals unappreciated by others? Do you long to see your dreams blossom, your efforts bear fruit? If so, ask Aine to shine her radiant light on you and show you how to reap the rewards you are due. She can nurture you during the early, growing stages of the development and guide you to the ¨harvest.¨
If you are experiencing health problems, Aine can aid you as you connect with nature´s curative processes. Purification, awakening the Divine within, and embracing joy can be powerful medicine. This goddess also helps you renew the vitality and sacredness in your relationship with others, especially romantic ones, which can send positive energy rippling through other areas of your life.
As our ancestors did for centuries, you can attract the powers of the goddess to aid you in any endeavor, from inspiring creativity to protection to healing. Enact this ritual to petition Aine´s assistance. You will need:
.An herbal symbol of your intention, such as red rose petals for love, wheat or rice kernels for fertility, mint leaves for abundance, etc (note it is best to request the goddess's help with only one objective at a time.)
.An unbleached muslin bag
1.- Place the herbal symbols of your objective in the muslin bag and tie it shut with one end of the string.
2.- Hang the bag from a tree by tying the other end of the string to a twig or branch.
3.- Say a prayer to Aine and ask her to help manifest your desire.
4.- As the weather deteriorates the bag and its ingredients fall to the ground, your request is answered.