In a few weeks it will be the Autumn equinox – that great season when the length of the day and the night are the same, that great time of balance. The compass point associated with the Autumn equinox is the west, which, from our vantage point is ‘the great sea’, and so therefore the element represented is that of water.
This equinox is sometimes called Mabon, Harvest home or the Second harvest (the first being Lammas), the Feast of Avalon, but I prefer the old Welsh name for it – I know, I maybe somewhat biased – but to the ancients of Wales it was/is known as Alban Elfed, meaning, ‘the Light of the Water.
Over the next few weeks, I’d like to post liturgy that can be used for Alban Elfed (or, flexibly, at other times, too), the first of which is today’s post. The following is based very loosely, and initially on a prayer/blessing adapted from the Carmina Gadelica.
An Alban Elfed Prayer:
Giver of water,
you who are higher than the sky,
we pray that you would shower us with your love, your grace and mercy.
Maker of the Sea, Of Ocean’s deep,
carry us over the currents of this life, and on to the end of the journey,
that we may return home to you in peace and safety.
River-shaper, Creator of rain and of dew,
you who causes everything to spring up,
establish in us a living faith, that flows, and matures, and grows.
Storm-bringer, Oh Three-In One
subdue the wind and crest of the wave.
Ward off the storm from the west,
that all may be calm, tranquil, and all may be at rest.
Great Guide of all, God of the elements,
be at the helm of our life.
Be to us our compass-chart,
a bright star to lead us through unknown seas.
(Based on: Beannachadh Cuain / The Ocean Blessingg)