Working in the Bear’s Den: Candlemas

* I know this is a tad late… Sorry.

Now, I said some time ago that I was going to have a six-sided calender. I had the idea pop into my head years ago, and after getting to know Dver, and more working with my own Bear Mother, it concreted. So, this year I began with the feast of the bear – Candlemas. Granted, it isn’t the best name ever devised, but it’s what I’ve got until I’m either told something else, or I learn of a truer name for it.

So, upon an old wooden shield I still have, I placed my bear skulls, bear statuary, a wooden carved figure of Arta, witnessed by Grandfather Raccoon (a distant relation to the Bear after all), and worked an indoor rite in my own black-bearskin, and bore witness to the Bear’s majesty and power.

I don’t see the bear as many do, but I simply shrug and go on with things. It’s what I’ve been shown, and what I know. It ain’t perfect, but it does actually work.

Picture 406

I was surprised this year. I had not realized how cold my blood had become from it’s damn-near boiling normalcy. It had stilled, gone cool. The sting of tragedy, heartache, sorrow, and despair had put out the flame entirely.

On the verge of a deep trance, I heard a familiar sound of steel on steel.


“Rise,” was what reverberated through my bones.

I continued my work, my chants, and my songs. My drum began to take a different sound to it, almost like a heart-beat in it’s bass depth.

K-think… K-think….

Rise. Out of the den with you.

I felt a fire in my head, that made my ears feel as if they were going to melt off. I felt the hot flush in my cheeks, and I could feel my pulse in my fingertips. I couldn’t stop drumming; I ached for it, I itched for it, I craved more heat.

Arta was putting the fire back into me, I realized.


I sat still for a moment, panting from the slight motion of near-dancing, and drumming ferociously. I felt it. A stirring I hadn’t felt for so long, like a scratch that wasn’t a scratch – a growl that made no noise, like fingers opening a lock. It felt like the front door was opening, and the brilliant light of the outside world blinded my indoor darkened world.


I felt it. Make no mistake, I felt it. I continued drumming, and chanting. My entire body was covered in sweat, but I couldn’t have enough heat. I felt desire again, I felt passion, I felt anger, I felt pride, I felt… Well – I felt.

I was in joyful tears in the end, and sang happy praises to Her as I closed my ritual.

I now feel the fires of spring, even though snow still lingers. I feel it for a change.

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2 thoughts on “Working in the Bear’s Den: Candlemas

  1. I know this probably doesn’t mean much in the face of what you wrote here, but this really made me smile. I’m glad you were able to reach this point. 🙂 I’m also glad you feel comfortable sharing these bits of your spirituality. They inspire me to try doing something deeper with my own practice.

    • I’m glad you enjoyed it. It was an intense experience, and I can’t describe how grateful I am for it. I’m also thankful to Dver for giving me that last little push to do this too.

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