While I am not going to go into many details about the ceremony, it is a two day affair and today I did the first part. This involved mostly purification and other self preparation for tomorrow. (PS in the following pictures please forgive the mess in the entry way and artists corner…it is the most cluttery part of the house)
I began by setting out before me a bowl of clean water and incense, specifically called Fire. With these before me I prayed, calling on the blessings of Mother Leto, Artemis, Apollon and Father Zeus. I then proceeded to waft the purifying incense towards me as I prayed. After praying to Father Zeus I took the water up and anointed my head with the water.
This was then followed by the ritual to Artemis. There was one unfortunate part to this, the battery in the camera died when my daughter was taking photos so you don’t see the very end of the ritual were I cut a lock for my hair. Once the batteries charged up a bit I got a picture of the shrine with the lock of hair (knotted in three places) placed on the altar.
After the ritual was finished I did the final part of the ceremony. This was applying henna to my hands. Now most folks hire a henna artist to do it. But since I have used henna before and enjoy it, I felt up to the challenge of doing it myself. I painted my left hand first and then when that was dry I painted my right hand. It is very helpful in such cases to be ambidextrous as I am. Though you can tell that my left hand isn’t quite as developed in fine motor control as my right hand. I had my playlist going on as I applied the paint to my hand and then waited for it to dry.
Tomorrow now is the big ceremony. I need to run to the store in the morning to get some groceries, but I will also be picking up a little bit of fresh flowers and a cake. So while today’s ritual for Artemis was rather low key, tomorrow will be a different matter entirely!