For celebrations, gathering with others around the fire or Maypole are highlights of Beltane. Due to the current impact of COVID-19, celebrating in large groups is not possible. While Beltane celebrations look different this year, you can still connect with the holiday spirit. Below are the five best ways to have a beautiful earth-based celebration at home. This way, you’ll still be able to observe the meaning of the day.
#1. Build an Altar
Like every sabbat, building an altar is a common tradition. Since it's the holiday of fertility, consider decorating your altar with spring flowers. These can include tulips, lilacs, or lavender buds. Feminine herbs, such as rose, will also suffice.
Aside from flowers, candles are another wonderful addition to your altar. They act as a symbol of the Beltane fire. Consider lighting candles that are symbolic of love or abundance. If you’re looking to attract your soulmate, it’s recommended to light a purple candle the night before Beltane.
#2. Garden Indoors
Indoor gardening has become increasingly popular over the last few years. If you don’t have a yard -- or choose to stay inside -- starting an indoor garden is the perfect way to welcome the season. The simplest way to start is by growing herbs. Luckily, there are many herbal indoor gardening options that are easy to put together. This recent article outlines the best indoor kits for beginners.
What’s more, having an indoor garden allows you to personally witness a “birth and death” period with your plants. By growing them from seeds, you’ll be able to watch them ripen, die, and grow back the following year.
#3. Cook a Feast
Nothing symbolizes a celebration better than a hearty feast! Every celebration, whether it’s earth-based or not, should involve nourishing food. Even if you’re eating solo this year, it’s still important to make a special “mini feast” for yourself.
Without question, the most popular foods to eat during Beltane are sweets. Given it’s a holiday centered around love, it comes as no surprise that fruits, pastries, and honey rank at the top of the list. Consider trying these tasty oatcakes (a traditional Beltane treat!) for dessert.
If you’re quarantining with your partner, don’t hesitate to put aphrodisiacs on the menu to satisfy your sensual appetite. A popular aphrodisiac inspired dish to serve includes oysters with a side of roasted asparagus and almonds. If you’re sticking to fruit for dessert, consider bananas covered in dark chocolate for added sensuality.
#4. Walk in Nature
Thankfully, nature is always available to us. With everything in bloom, spring is the best time to absorb the earth’s beauty. If you’re seeking solitude in nature, take a morning stroll by yourself. Sit in a park with the trees, flowers, and grass. Write down your thoughts as they come to you. Most importantly, express gratitude for having the ability to be close to nature. Beltane is all about enjoying the beauty of the season, so take in every precious moment.
If you have a backyard, try throwing a private picnic outside. Set up a space surrounded by flowers to create a nice atmosphere for enjoying the holiday.
#5. Incorporate Herbs into Your Ritual
Every earth-based celebration involves herbs, flowers, and oils. People also use Beltane as an opportunity to cleanse their space with incense. This welcomes in the positive energy of Beltane and removes lingering negative energy.
Popular incense to use includes jasmine, rose, and frankincense. These feminine herbs are also used in tinctures for evoking fertility. Other common herbs used in ritualistic celebrations include dogwood, marjoram, meadowsweet, and woodruff. Incorporate these herbs into your ritual to focus on what you would like to attract during the spring season.
Closing Thoughts on Beltane
Celebrating without a larger group or family can be disappointing. Even with the differences in Beltane this year, the true blessing is being able to enjoy earth’s fertility. Make sure to put a heavy emphasis on gratitude, enjoy your surroundings, and keep love as your focus. Regardless of this unprecedented situation, you can still have an abundant celebration!
Marissa has been drawn to the world of aromatics and plants since she was a child. Certified in aromatherapy, Reiki, and meditation, she actively changes lives using these healing practices. Additionally, she is a holistic life coach, and works towards helping others heal while simultaneously getting in touch with their spiritual side. As Herbstalk's Market Manager & Community Engagement Assistant, Marissa draws upon years of experience to oversee vendor relations, event management, and social media outreach. As a longtime attendee and member of the Herbstalk community, she is beyond thrilled to be a part of the team!