The following ritual will be used to cast our circle around the festival site on Thursday night…and then enclose the sacred image of Isis within Her Shrine for the night. Fewer people will be there on this night, so this can be considered a pre-opening ritual. The main opening ritual will happen Friday night once everyone’s arrived.
Site: At the Temple of Isis fire pit
Previously prepared: Firewood assembled with one of two magic ingredients in place. Priest/ess of the Flame of Isis has second ingredient ready. Also have Sun-yellow votive candle and punk to transfer the flame from fire to candle.
All gather in Temple of Isis around fire pit or brazier.
Pss/Ps: Close your eyes and let us breathe together, slowly. In and out. The air is the breath of Isis. The air is the breeze of Summer. The air is the air Isis fanned into the nostrils of Osiris to return Him to life. The air is the breath of Isis. And therefore do we breathe the breath of Isis. Take the breath of Isis deep into your lungs. Exhale and relax your body. Move your body, shake it out if you need to. Then relax into the supporting Wings of Isis as you continue to breathe Her breath.
Breathe slowly and relax, relax.
We are come here to this beautiful place to celebrate the Summer Solstice Festival of Isis the Radiant Goddess. We know that we are welcomed here by Her—Isis, Great of Magic, Beautiful of Wings, Sweet of Love, Greatly Majestic.
In ancient days, Isis was known by many, many names. One of them was Isis, Mistress of Flame—Iset Nebet Neseret. She was called Isis the Flame because of Her fiery, protective, magical power. Nothing ill could pass by Her Fire. It was so in ancient days. And it is so now.
Within our hearts, we each carry the beating Flame of Isis and we can use that small flame to kindle Her greater flame to encircle and protect us during our rites and during this festival. We can do so now—at this sacred time and in this holy place.
Focus your attention at your heart and see there the Flame of Isis. Be aware of your heartbeat and in vision, watch the flame pulse.
Pss/Ps places the second ingredient in the fire.
Pss/Ps: Now touch your hand to your heart and feel its pulsing warmth. In a moment, we will inhale the breath of Isis…then as we exhale, open our eyes, take our hands from our hearts and extend them toward the firewood—and we will begin to invoke Her flame. If you are ready, we will do this now: inhale, exhale and extend your hand. And say, “Let the Flame of Isis arise!”
All: Let the Flame of Isis arise!
Pss/Ps: Join with me now as we invoke Her flame. Feel free to use gestures as well as chanting. Call upon your own magic to invoke the flame as we chant. (Chanting) Fire burn, flame protect. Arise, Isis, arise.
All chant and use gestures to invoke the fire. This continues until the flames come and chant comes to an end. Priest/ess of the Flame of Isis takes up votive and punk, lights punk, then lights candle with it.
Pss/Ps: From our hearts to Her heart. From Her heart to ours. We begin building the Temple of Isis. Let us each, silently and in our hearts, pledge ourselves to Spirit and Community during this festival weekend as we pass the Flame of Isis from hand to hand and heart to heart.
S/he passes the votive to the person to the left. This continues around the circle until the votive is returned to Priest/ess of the Flame of Isis.
Pss/Ps: (As flame moves from hand to hand) As the Fire of Isis moves around the circle, visualize a circle of magical flame encircling this festival site, protecting all who come here to honor Isis, the Lady of Flame.
All: (Chanting freeform) ISIS. ISIS. ISIS.
(When votive returns to her/him) With the Isis Fire that burns in all our hearts, we have laid the foundations of the House, or Temple, of Isis and encircled this sacred place with protection during these holy rites. Let us join hands.
Pss/Ps: May Isis bless us, bless Her Temple, bless Her altars, and bless our Work during this festival as we say together: “By the Magic of Isis, it is so!”
All: By the Magic of Isis, it is so!
Pss/Ps: (Addressing group) Now all who wish may stay as we veil and enclose the sacred image of Isis for the night and bid Her goodnight. This rite is perhaps 5 minutes long. If you do not wish to stay, then we bid you have a beautiful night.
If you are staying, you may draw close around the altar that you may better be part of the rites.
Rite of Entering the Night
Presuming most will remain; Priest/ess of the Veil and Priest/ess of the Night move to the altar of Isis and cross their hands on their chest, bowing to the image of Isis. Priest/ess of the Veil lights charcoal and prepares incense. Priest/ess of the Night pours pure water into the libation cup and readies the libation bowl.
Veil & Night: (Singing together) Isis is the wisdom that is given in the Boat of the Morning. Isis is the wisdom that is given in the Boat of the Night. Isis is the wisdom that is given in the Boat of the Morning. Isis is the wisdom that is given in the Boat of the Night. Isis, Isis, Isis. (Repeating until they feel attuned to the Goddess through Her image.)
P Veil: A spark from the Heart of Isis resides within this sacred image of the Goddess.
P Night: We honor that spark from the Heart of the Goddess as we honor Isis Herself.
Priest/ess of the Veil places incense on the charcoal, then elevates it toward the image.
P Veil: We offer to You, O Isis Within, this sweet spice. May it please You and make Your rest peaceful.
P Night: We offer to You, O Isis Within, this pure water. May it cool Your lips and make Your rest peaceful.
Priest/ess of the Night elevates libation cup toward the image, then pours it into a larger bowl. S/he stands and slowly makes the gesture of Closing the Shrine.
P Night: (Vibrating softly) ISIS.
Priest/ess of the Veil steps before the image and slowly makes the gesture of Closing the Shrine.
P Veil: (Vibrating softly) ISIS.
Both priest/esses take up the Veil to cover the image.
Veil & Night: (Together; speaking for the Goddess) I am that Star Who shines in the night. I am Isis Sothis Who lifts up your soul in the darkness. I am the giver of sleep and dreams, the Healer in the star-filled belly of My Mother. I enter into the Night and navigate the River of Stars in beauty.
(Veiling the image) Be in peace, Isis, be in peace.