Sparkle balloons

According to Wicca philosophy, “the power of the moon cannot be overstated.”

Now, before you think I’m getting all “woo-woo,” I wanted to lead with that thought as it relates to a recent excursion I had with some friends when we attended a Moon Group led by a Wiccan High Priestess.

According to the leader of this group, who holds monthly meetings on all things lunar, our great orb in the sky has way more influence on our lives than simply bossing around the gravitational pull of the tides. It impacts the energy and lives of all living beings.

moon-3059861_1920When I was a kid I honestly thought the moon followed me wherever I went. I would be riding in the back seat of my parent’s wood-paneled station wagon, and noticed that as we moved, the moon moved along with us. It was a totally comforting thought that I am sure, many people have experienced and can relate to.

There is supposed to be a super Blue Moon next week which means we experience a twofer – two full moons in one month. That was also discussed with much excitement at the moon meeting we attended one Friday evening.

I admit to a little trepidation when Dorothy and I entered the room, a little late and flustered due to the rush hour traffic. We were heartened however, to see our friend Denise’s smiling face. She was already sock-footed and sitting in the circle of other “moonies” on metal folding chairs (hello, my name is Martha, and I’m a moonaholic….Hello Martha!).

My trepidation returned, though, when I spied a small table set up in the middle of our circle. It held some rather innocuous candles, but also a long knife in a bedazzled, ornate sheath. The type you could imagine would be just the perfect instrument for that pesky but oh so necessary blood sacrifice. As it turned out, it was simply a prop used by Wiccans to wave around and point at the moon (for serious extra emphasis, I imagine!).

In simplistic terms, Wicca means holding a deep spiritual connection and appreciation for all things in nature. It promotes oneness with all things. Witches, on the other hand,  foster free thought and the will of the individual. They celebrate the seasons and the lunar phases. Although two separate things, Wiccans and witches both seem to believe in the divine work of harnessing the natural energy around them to effect change in their lives (not unlike the power of positive thinking movement penned in the 1950’s by Norman Vincent Peale).

After introducing ourselves and standing and chanting our appreciation for earth’s elements while facing the four points of the compass, we sat and listened to the priestess talk about the power of the moon. She then revealed that after we had formed this closed circle of energy, we were going to go outside and pop balloons.  Huh, you say? And not plain old balloons. She placed different colored balloons and a rainbow selection of vials holding no, not sheep’s blood, but rather glitter on the dagger table. The kind you’d find in any craft store to make Valentine’s Day cards with grammar school children.

“Pick a balloon and fill it with some of the glitter,” she urged, after ensuring no one was allergic to latex (I snorted at that one).

We did as the priestess bid. The sparkles were frankly, for effect but also represented the fay, or fairy world many witches believe are always around us in nature. Merry pranksters who’d love nothing better than to see a dozen women stand in a parking lot covering their Honda Civics in red and silver glitter dust.

Hell, we were game. I’m game for most new experiences these days if it’ll distract me.

So we strolled outside, inflated balloons in hand. Another incantation was started by the group, at first awkwardly but then gaining in voice and momentum. With our pins poised, we sacrificed our balloons as one, filling the air with fairy sparkles, laughing, comparing the effect.

We had joined together, releasing our shared energy and latex spheres, sending our private intentions out into the universe.

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