12 Awesome Nature Centered Activities for Beltane

Without fail, when I think of Beltane, one of the first things that pops into my mind is nature. This is such an expressive, revitalizing chapter of the year. In the Western Hemisphere, the earth is finally throwing open the dark curtains of winter, as new life surrounds us in ever increasing abundance.

Beltane is a time of sacred feminine energy, as well as one that leads itself superbly to interacting with, honouring, and celebrating – fittingly – Mother Nature.

Like many of us in the Pagan sphere, I feel an almost electric sense of energy and a powerfully rooted excitement as Beltane returns. The fiery energy of the sun spurs me outside all the more, and as I’m very fortunate to live on a wee slice of woodland, it’s all I can do not to set up camp on our own property and live under the sun, moon and glowing stars until sub-zero temperatures return.

One certainly doesn’t have to go that all out to connect with nature at Beltane (though you can, if you’d like!). Whether you live in the heart of the forest, a pastoral farmland, the inner city, along the shores of the sea, or anywhere else, it is possible to connect with nature in deep and personally meaningful ways come the final springtime sabbat.

The following is a list of several suggestions that can help you to do just that.

Either starting on, or a few days prior to, Beltane, keep a moon journal for a month (or longer). Record anything that you do, feel, or think pertaining to the moon’s cycles during this beautiful sabbat month, including such things as spellwork, coven activities, and rituals of all sizes. You are not limited to words alone here. Feel free to include artwork, found images, mixed media, photographs, dried and pressed flowers and leaves – anything your heart desires.

Drink tea made from, or otherwise cook or bake with, edible flowers of the season. Some grocery stores, speciality food shops, and farmer’s markets sell edible flowers, if not (ensuring you are well informed as to which varieties are safe for human consumption beforehand) consider forging for some yourself in your area.

Grab a tent (or book a cabin) and go camping. Whether you enjoy roughing it in the extreme or prefer to practise the art of glamping, or any point in between, camping offers us an incredible way to connect with nature. Practise eco-camping approaches, select (if possible) a spot that is quite peaceful and not too noisy, and get back to nature. While doing so, you may wish to wake with the sun on Beltane itself (or the morning immediately after), perform outdoor rituals that are conducive to your surroundings, engage in forest bathing, mediate and/or perform yoga in the fresh air, watch the stars spring to life at night, and reflect on what Beltane means to as your feet connect with the earth and your heart smiles in unison with the wonders of nature.

Create an outdoor altar. If you don’t have one already – or your existing version is in need of some sprucing up – why not put together a lovely outdoor altar all your own? This can be done in most backyard, some front yard, and many balcony/deck settings. Decent sized stones and rocks, tree stumps and larger logs, old terracotta flower pots, and large pieces of driftwood can all make excellent foundations for an outdoor altar (which can be as simple or elaborate as you desire). Add seasonal elements that resonate with you in regard to Beltane, offerings for the genius loci where you reside, and anything else that feels right for you and your practise.

Have a bonfire (they’re not just for fall time sabbats!). While often connected to the fiery energy of God and Goddess, bonfires also represent the returning warmth, light and energy of the spring/summer sun and the new (green) life that it creates in abundance.

Join a community garden program. If you don’t have a garden of your own or if yours is limited in size or scope, consider looking into local community gardening programs and ways that you can get involved with one yourself. Growing some of what we eat with our own hands can be one the most fulfilling ways to honour not only Gaia herself, but our own bodies and spirits, too.

 

Create a handmade sleep sachet with dried herbs/flower petals and essential oils that relate to spring and summertime to place under your pillow or otherwise close to your sleeping environment (i.e., on a bedside table).

Honour the faery folk. If you work with or otherwise have a desire to connect in a positive way with the fae, Beltane is an excellent opportunity to do just that. As gardens are blooming, fresh produce is growing, and the natural setting of these enchanting entities is at one of its loveliest points in the year. There are numerous ways to honour and celebrate faeries, some of which include creating faery gardens or altars, leaving offerings for the faeries in your area, creating art, poetry or music that celebrates them, and calling upon fae energy in your magickal workings and rituals.

Whip up a floral crown or headdress using fresh, dried or artificial flowers to wear come Beltane. The internet abounds with tutorials on how to create headwear, but you can just as easily put you own imagination to work and whip up an original design. If you use real greenery and flowers, consider drying your floral crown and using it to adorn your altar or other sacred space this spring and summer, as well as for future Beltane celebrations.

See if there are local areas where you live that are in need of trash clean up, general maintenance, animal habitat conservation or other means of helping to support the natural ecosystem of your community. Ever since childhood, I’ve felt that taking care of Mother Nature, in ways big and small alike, is truly one of the most sincere and important ways we can show our home planet just how much we respect and appreciate it. 

Charge your crystals and/or other sacred objects that you use in your practise under the light of the Beltane moon and/or sunshine.

Visit a local farm (fruit, vegetables, lavender, honey, flowers, etc) and interact with some of the folks who are working hard in your community to ensure that local foods are still available. If possible, pick or otherwise collect and bring home some local produce to use as part of your Beltane feast, on your altar, or in your offerings.

These are but a few of the many ways that we can engage with nature come Beltane. I encourage you to think of, and seek out, others and to keep a record of both what you do this year and any other ideas you may have for future celebrations. Beltane is such a glorious turn on the Wheel of the Year. Let its innate wild energy and natural magick speak to you, and you in turn with it, as you embrace the beautiful outdoor world this May 1st.

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