The third class was on tree meditation- a guided meditation much like the Two Powers, it is for grounding and centering. But the tree med. has a broader role in their ritual- connecting the participants together and creating a flow of energy between them. Each person imagines themselves merging into a tree and remains that way until the end of the ritual.
Our assignment for the next class was to write our own tree meditation. From then on, students will take turns leading tree meds at the beginning of class to practice- since there are only 3 of us, we will each get to do it twice.
I enjoyed writing my tree med- I decided to do mine with a tropical theme, walking down the beach, then merging into a palm tree. It started out well with good descriptions, but I had trouble fleshing out the rest of it.
At the next class (fourth) which was last night, I led the class in it, then the teachers gave me some feedback about how to improve it. There were some steps that I didn't get right, but I will be editing it further.
This class was about the Grove Tender and Invocations. The grove tender is responsible for getting the ritual space ready, putting the magical tools in place (in ritual order) making sure the guests are comfortable, reducing or redirecting disruptions, and assisting the ritual leaders (Druid 1 and 2) It sounds like a lot, but much of it is little steps. The teachers went over all the tools and how they are used, and went through what the Grove tender does before, during and after the ritual. They also asked if any of us might be willing to take on some of the grove tender duties at the next ritual. I volunteered to anoint people, as it is a simple thing to start out with. I will try other duties as I become more familiar with the ritual structure.
The we discussed invocations- all the steps involved. Tasha (one of the teachers) did a sample invocation to the Nature Spirits. Then we all wrote our own invocations, after drawing a paper with a kindred or deity on it from a basket. I did the Morrigan. Then we each read our invocations.
Here's what I wrote:
Morrigan, Queen of Ravens, goddess of battle, giver of courage and strength,
I, Mariah ask you to come and join us in our grove.
From your cauldron of sky, please enter this candle that we may receive your blessing. So be it.
Morrigan, Queen of Ravens, we are grateful for your presence on this Samhain night.
Our rite is ended, so I ask you to return to the cauldron of sky. So be it.
To explain- in Mists' rituals, each of the Kindreds (Triads as they call them) is invoked and their presence symbolized by a cauldron represented one of the 3 realms: water for Sea and the Ancestors, soil for Land and the Nature Spirits, and incense for Sky and the Deities. The participants are anointed with each of these substances after each invocation.
In the High Rites (holidays) the Matron and Patron are each invoked and channeled into a candle.
Our next class will be on Ancestors, and so our assignment is to write an Ancestor invocation.
Tonight we will be having the Spring Equinox ritual, so I'll be writing about that later.