There is probably nothing better than a reason to show off your new baby just after you have one. For those of you looking for an opportunity, this is a Birth Ritual (more commonly called a Wiccaning) that I adapted from “A Book of Pagan Rituals” Herman Slater, Editor. It is a beautiful celebration and gives you a reason to get everyone together to see your new baby and give the little one gifts.
As for my own views on this matter, I don’t think its necessary to have a Wiccaning. One of the main thoughts of Wicca is that we should all find our own path. A Wiccaning kinda says, “I want my baby to follow his/her own path, as long as that path is Wicca.” I waited for my children to tell me what they wanted to do.
I taught them about Wicca/Paganism, Buddhism, Christianity, Judaism and Islam then listened to their choice in the matter. My daughter; 28 now, just tells me “That is not my Path” but she never elaborates. That is her choice of course; I don’t care if her path is Vamperism as long as she doesn’t kill someone to get the blood. My son; 22 now, decided when he was 8 that he wanted to dedicate and initiate into Wicca and that has been his Path ever since. My point being, I waited for them to tell me what was right for them and they made the choice that was right for them…whatever that may be.
For those of you that do wish to have a Wiccaning though, here is a Ritual that will give you an idea of how the celebration should go. As I said, it is a good way to let everyone see your beautiful baby, have photo ops and get some more gifts to help with getting all of those supplies that you may need. You could also have the Wiccaning instead of a baby shower if you didn’t have a chance to have a shower.
(After circle is cast, open Southern doorway and invite new mother in without the child for now.)
(Priestess should light white candle.)
PRIESTESS: Lady __________ enter now this circle, but not as before; through the Eastern gate, as that is the direction of birth. For now you, are a Mother. And now; to mark your passage from maiden to motherhood, enter this circle through the Southern Gate, the gate of life and the element of the Fire of Life.
(Mother enters circle and takes her place at the alter.)
MOTHER: By the magic of the Mother Goddess and that of the Father God, the magic of new life has flowed through me, and to my newborn child.
By the power of the Lady and Lord, do I leave behind the flower of my maidenhood. For I have born the fruit of motherhood.
(Light red candle and extinguish white.)
(Pick up red cape.)
Here do I hold the symbol of the Great Mother, red like the Fire of Life. As I place it on my shoulders, Divine Mother of all Life, grant me Your gifts of wisdom and love, for I have entered Your sacred realm.
(A moment of meditation on the meaning of life.)
PRIESTESS: Lord and Lady, Father and Mother, God and Goddess, we have cast this circle on this night to celebrate a new life which through Your magic has come to us.
ALL: Blessed Be!!
(Open Eastern doorway and have father or other father figure carry infant through.)
(Place the baby before the alter.)
PRIESTESS: Divine child, conceived in love, through the magic of the Old Gods, I name you ___________.
(Carry child to Eastern Quarter.)
PRIESTESS: Spirits of the East, know this child whose name is _________. Bless him/her with the breath of life and give him/her strengthen of mind.
(Gently blow incense in child’s direction.)
ALL: __________, be clear of mind and strong of purpose that you may know and fulfill your destiny. Blessed Be!
(Carry child to Southern Quarter.)
PRIESTESS: Spirits of the South, know this child whose name is _________. Bless him/her with the fire of life and give him/her a passion for life.
(Catch child’s eye with the flame from candle and move it toward the South.)
ALL: __________, let the passion of life burn fiercely in you, that you may know and fulfill your destiny. Blessed Be!
(Carry Child to Western Quarter.)
PRIESTESS: Spirits of the West, know this child whose name is _________. Bless him/her with the magic of life and give him/her the gift of hidden knowledge.
(Anoint child’s forehead in the sign of the pentacle with water from chalice.)
ALL: __________, listen to the inner voice and follow your intuition, that you may know and fulfill your destiny. Blessed Be!
(Carry child to Northern Quarter.)
PRIESTESS: Spirits of the North, know this child whose name is _________. Bless him/her with the strength of life and give him/her the gift of physical well-being.
(Place a few grains of salt on child’s tongue.)
ALL: __________, taste the joys of life and honor your physical well-being, that you may know and fulfill your destiny. Blessed Be!
PRIESTESS: Lady and Lord; Mother and Father of all, behold this child whom we call __________. Conceived in love and by Your divine law. We ask that You protect this new and fragile life and enfold him/her in Your love.
(Parents light short red candle from flames of red and green alter candles.)
PARENTS: By Your power, Lady and Lord, we light the purifying flame. May its transforming magic grant the gift of immortality to ___________. Blessed Be!
(Child is presented to friends and family and gifts are received.)
PRIESTESS: Now it is time to plant the birth tree! Please form a circle around the selected sight.
(All form a circle around prepared ground.)
PRIESTESS: Lady and Lord, Spirits of the East, South, West and North; from this time on, this child, ___________ and this tree are magically bound. As one flourishes, so does the other. May the elements of Earth, Air, Fire and Water nurture this tree. As I will, so be it mote. Blessed Be!
ALL: Blessed Be!
(Protection charms and symbols of good fortune are hung from the branches of the birth tree.)
(Dancing around the tree and feasting in celebration.)
At the point you are planting the birth tree, you can also add the baby’s umbilical cord to the hole under the tree. Again this to me is something that could be better served elsewhere. I feel you should have the cord saved and frozen at the hospital (or at a facility that stores them) in case cord blood is needed later on to save the child’s life. I felt I should offer these two very different options for you to decide on your own though.