The book starts features only a few chapters that include Candlemas, Equinox Turbulence, Ostara, Beltaine, and An On-Going Celebration. The focus subject for the latest Pagan Portals book release is on the Spring seasons. Each chapter covers the historical information as well as modern day practices. The author also includes some suggested ideas to celebrate as well as a recipe that can be made to honor the season.
The first chapter is on Candlemas which is also known as Imbolc. This marks the beginning of spring and the return of the light after the darker days of winter. The author dives deep into the roots of this fire festival and how it has been observed and celebrated.
In the second chapter, Equinox Turbulence the reader learns about change and the rebirth for all life. The author explains this was the best time for cleansing old energy. In modern times we may hear of folks doing their “Spring Cleaning”. This a time where the reader may feel more energy, a desire to be outside and plant in gardens. The author mentions the season changes and how that can effect moods. I know from personal experience the darker days of winter can make me feel isolated and down whereas for spring I have more energy and feel happier. In this chapter the author again provides some fun activities to celebrate, my favorite was the ones with your zodiac sign. This chapter also features some fun information on the 12 Chinese zodiac signs and personality traits. This provides good details for anyone not familiar with the Chinese New Year and corresponding years and attributes.
The next chapter transitions into Ostara that is the festival to honor the Goddess Eostre. This is a time most stores bring out ‘Easter’ items such as plush bunnies, candy eggs. This is a holiday to celebrate new life, abundance and fertility. The reader can find more information on the history and past traditions such as the egg hunts and egg rolling traditions. In this chapter the food recipes sound divine!
Next up is the chapter on Beltaine. This festival is another to celebrate fertility as the earth becomes more fertile, greener, new life arrives and abundance is sought. Beltaine is one of the major fire festivals and readers may have heard of the Beltaine Fires. This can be accomplished in many ways, a most common modern way would be a fire pit. (Just be sure the location is safe and proper fire safety precautions are taken). Again there is a great bit of historical information and great recipes provided in the chapter. I was most interested in the Bannocks or (Traditional) Oatcakes!
The book wraps up discussing how to keep the traditions alive and consider how to balance with other family members and holidays that are not the same. Traditions can be adapted as needed and adjusted depending on the family.
Overall this is another great title and perfect to help explain the Spring Festivals for those curious on the origins and suggested ways to celebrate.
~review by Amber Barnes
Author: Melusine Draco
Moon Books, 2023
pp. 96, $12.95