My Rauhnact was spent in solitary fashion; quiet and peaceful. I had a few gifts to open, and time to myself.
Rauhnact means “Rough Nights,” and it is the darkest night (we all know) of the year. The Bear Mother gives birth during these nights, as the winds howl in her stirring. They will rise at the New Year at Ostern. The Antlered Weaver turns to Huntress of Souls, as it is the apex of the ‘Season of the Dead,’ of which Her hunt rides in it’s fury. I spent time with family and friends, which equated to quite a bit of driving. While I did not want to be outdoors, I didn’t want to be anti-social (though I am). It is a twelve night celebration of gifts, merry-making, laughter, and story-telling.
It was a night of oracles, divination, and I dined with my Ancestors. I laid out my prognostication for the next twelve months for weather predictions, and I lit my tri-wick candle (because I am still without a fireplace sadly).
I dined on slow-roasted duck, steamed vegetables, and mashed potatoes (I was by myself mind you), and I saved the heart for future workings. The duck was filled with a cranberry, hazelnut, and chestnut stuffing. I did my best to play ‘Hock,’ which is an old game of stacking hazelnuts.
I donned my bearskin, and put on my ritual attire besides, and Sannion would’ve been proud of the estatic dancing I did around my house to the beat of my drum, long into the night.
Offerings were given: butter to the Midnight spirit to prevent mischief; Red Wine to the Huntress of Souls, Cream for the wandering souls, saltless bread for the returning dead, and milk for the Good Neighbors.
I blessed my house and home, from summit to stay, base to ceiling beam – and the combination was done in two stages, of which the second (done with bones) I didn’t feel comfortable taking a photo of.
My Rauhnact isn’t over. There will be another post soon. After much divination’s my decision is made clear. In the next ensuing months I will be pursuing something near and dear to me, and I know the Gods will be with me on this. I know my Ancestors support this. I know my spirits.. Well, want to see what happens.
I hope your celebrations are filled with laughter, funny stories, new stories being written, love, righting wrongs, and as the Bear Mother stirs – may your inspiration stir as well!