May 1 is Beltane in the Northern Hemisphere, November 1 in the Southern Hemisphere, and on that day we honour nature’s oldest love story. Beltane means bright fire, and in earth-based traditions, it represents the symbolic marriage of the God and Goddess and their eternal embrace.
According to ancient lore, the two have been separated all winter long, and their glorious reunion on Beltane is celebrated with food, drink, and multi-coloured maypoles to symbolize female energies wrapping themselves around the male form. The entire world comes alive with new life and bright colours to celebrate this union of the Divine Feminine with the Divine Masculine.
This holiday is a celebration that honours the divine balance in the union of masculine and feminine. Having reached maturity after their long, wintry separation, Lord and Lady can now come together as one and give birth to new life, ideas, passions, projects, and wonderful expressions of unbridled sensuality.
Fires are the traditional staple and symbol of Beltane. Traditionally, pastoral herds were driven through two fire posts for blessing and purification. The young, unmarried men would then leap over the bonfire and wish for a wife, while young women would leap to ensure their fertility.