Extracted from Shaman Corner Blog Post – Moon Books Blog
February was originally named after the Latin februum, which means Purification which is another name for cleansing. Purification or cleansing rituals called Februa were always held on February 15th which in the old lunar calendar was full moon.
The idea of February being a month of purification, a time where we can cleanse ourselves, purify our body, mind and spirit before moving into the new energy and new beginnings that come with Spring seems to fit.
I often use fire ceremony at other times of the year to cleanse and transform, to let go of the old and to make way for the new. I have many different ways of doing this, but as this is a new way of thinking about February for me, I decided to journey to ask my guides for a fire ritual that could be used at this time of year for the purpose of purification. I was given a lovely ritual but to my surprise it was one that used all four elements and not just fire.
As I stepped into my journey I noticed I was dressed in white and wearing a headdress of willow. Within a shamanic journey everything is symbolic so I have interpreted the white dress as representing the holding of the intention to be purified and the willow headdress as needing to be flexible with the ritual. In my journey I made use of a stream, river stones, fallen leaves and soil and as I know I wont always have these to hand, I have been flexible and have adapted the ritual so it may be used more easily.
February Purification Ritual
- Holding the intention to be purified, shower or bathe until you feel that your physical body has been completely cleansed. Allow the water to away anything that you are able to release.
- Continue to hold the intention to be purified
- Take river stones, smooth pebbles from the beach or smooth stones from the garden and build a base for your fire.
- On top of the stones build a small fire using wood you have gathered if possible.
- Light the fire.
- If indoors, a base could be made of small stones or crystals and a candle or night light set on top of them to represent fire.
- Collect leaves that have fallen from the trees and which have been lying underneath them.
- Drop handfuls of leaves onto the fire so that they create smoke.
- Indoors bundles of dried herbs such as sage, sweetgrass, lavender or rosemary, which are good for cleansing could be used to create smoke. These could also be added to the fire outdoors too of course.
- When there is enough smoke step into it so that it can cleanse the energy body.
- As air moves the smoke follow its movements, turning, twisting, dancing until the smoke has permeated every part of the energy body.
- If indoors then hands or a feather can be used to brush the smoke through the whole of the energy body.
- When the energy body feels completely purified pick up a handful of earth and sprinkle it over the fire to douse the smoke. Make sure the fire is completely out.
- If indoors earth or sand can be used in the same way.
- Finish by thanking everything that has been used in the ritual for helping with the purification.
This ritual could be used at any time of the month but perhaps the full moon, which is always a good time for letting go, would add extra energy to the ritual