“Respect should be given those indigenous nations who still carry on their ceremonies; still following the ancient laws of nature with songs and ceremonies.”
–Oren R. Lyons, Spokesman, Traditional Circle of Elders
Many of our Tribes still have the ceremonies, songs and traditions. Today, the ceremonies and songs are coming back even stronger. The Elders have a lot of this knowledge. The young people need to learn these songs and traditions from the Elders. This is the strength of the people. The ancient Wisdom and Knowledge of ancient Laws are hidden in the ceremonies and songs. We should seek out these songs and ceremonies.
Great Spirit, teach me the songs and ceremonies. Make my eyes open to see.
Unlike a non-Wiccan wedding album, which usually holds photographs of the happy couple and their immediate family, a Wiccan wedding album is a more interactive remind of the couple’s special day. Usually, the right-hand man purchases a large hardback book and decorates the outside in some way. Inside, there is a written copy of the sermon and vows from the ceremony. After the ceremony each guest writes a “well wishing” note on the pages that follow, and some of the dried lavender is collected from the ground and pressed into the book. Later, photographs can be added, along with other mementos, such as cards from guests or a copy of the invitation. This treasure is then kept in a special area in the couple’s home so that they can maintain all their wonderful memories in one place.
As with non-Wiccan weddings, the number of guests in attendance depends on how many people the couple chooses to invite. Most handfastings are very informal, and they’re usually not catered. Guests may be asked to prepare a signature dish, cook an old-fashioned delicacy, or bring a first-rate bottle of wine or a case of imported beer. These days, it is not so fashionable to buy large, expensive gifts or home appliances, most witches feel that small, homemade items or foods are more personal and allow each and every person invited to contribute in some way.
All of these offerings are placed on trestle tables, and once the wedding ceremony is over, the guests help themselves to the many mouth-watering contributions. Witches don’t tend to be materialistic, so this potluck arrangement is ideal for us and it keeps the cost to a minimum. I’m sure you’ll agree that this make the term ” the more the merrier” is very true indeed.
As guests arrive, gentle music is played in the background, and each person is offered a glass of wine. Chairs are placed in a large circle around the altar (which is off-center in the circle), and the guests sit, drink and await the celebration.
Once all the guests are seated, the “right-hand man” (usually a member of the groom’s family or a good friend) walks into the circle, ringing a handbell. This cleanses the area inside the circle of any negative energy. The bride’s made of honor then takes dried lavender flowers mixed with small chips of rose quartz and casts them at the feet of the guests for good luck. At the same time, one of the bride’s handmaidens or bridesmaids follows the right-hand man, waving a smudging stick or some sage incense from the altar to further purify the circle.