The Aegletia (October 1st through October 9th, 2019) will be our eighth annual celebration of our Lord’s Departure. This simple guide is given, that any who choose to, may prepare their homes, or other spaces, for Apollon’s arrival and presence during the festival.
There are a few specific ways in which you may enrich your space, beginning with the cleaning and organizing of the space you have chosen to utilize. Declutter, and put away everything that has a proper place. Dust, and wipe down your surfaces, along with sweeping, vacuuming, and anything else that you know needs to be addressed. This doesn’t have to be a super deep clean, but certainly enough to be welcoming and comfortable for your important g/Guests.
After the cleaning, you may want to look for seasonal flowers or fruits, especially those local to your own area of the world, and place them decoratively around your space. If the leaves have started to turn, even those make a lovely addition to the mood and atmosphere. If you are in the Southern Hemisphere, perhaps some young buds, or leafy plants, and of course, flowers. This is a time for us to mark the shift in the land, and we must not ignore our own locales. Our environments are the foundations to Treasury practice. Be aware of the land upon which you dwell, and flow with the turn of the seasons, as you experience them, first and foremost.
Note also the fleeting nature of Apollon’s time with us before His final departure, during the Ninth Illumination. Many flowers and plants last only a little over a week after being cut. So, with the festival lasting a total of nine days, by the time the Ninth Illumination arrives, many of them will be ready for appropriate offering to the ritual fire, should you choose to have one.
Moving on to other ways of attuning our spaces toward Apollon’s grace, we take note of the origin of our festival’s name. As the Aegletia is given its name after Apollon Aegletes, our Lord of the Setting Sun, and of the waning light, we must also be aware that what we feel during His Departure is not actually predicated upon the meteorological experience of the season of winter, as exists in the Northern Hemisphere. Apollon makes His journey at the same time each year, in all places, and winter is not the universal season experienced everywhere at this time. Summer holds its own mysteries in conjunction to His Departure, therefor, those in the Southern Hemisphere should feel no less free to fully exercise their own ways of acknowledgement and celebration. Think of the waning light as a metaphor for His encroaching distance, rather than taking the language literally, when it does not apply to your environment.
Having said that, let us move the conversation back toward decoration. Crystals, especially bold, sunlight colors, and those which are traditionally associated with Apollon, are a great addition to your space and festivities. Many Apollonians, including our Sisterhood, are fond of carnelian, or of orange or yellow calcite, as well as amber, quartz and selenite. You can read up on the properties of these crystals if you wish to incorporate them into your decorative choices, but this is not strictly necessary. These are, of course, not the only crystals or stones that one may decide to utilize, and all are encouraged to make their own correspondences, that every aspect of the Aegletia be attuned to their needs and wants.
Crystals or stones may be placed upon the altar, or within His shrine, during the week leading to the festival, that His blessing may be bestowed upon them. Leaving the crystals or stones out (in a safe location) at or near dusk for a succession of days, will allow them to absorb the solar energies which are present, that those energies may to transferred to the space that you are preparing. On the first day of the Aegletia, spread the crystals or stones decoratively about your living space, asking Apollon to extend His blessings across all areas of the home.
Another important preparation would be to clear the space of negative, or undesired energetic influence. This may be done in a variety of ways, and any that you are familiar and comfortable with already will suffice. One simple method of doing so includes the use of prepared salt water. Fill a clean jar with water, add a generous amount of salt (tap water and table salt are absolutely acceptable, though some may choose spring water or sea salt, as suits their tastes), speak your intent into the concoction, seal the jar, and place it upon your kitchen or dining room table. The jar will absorb any negative energy pervading the space, and should be emptied (onto the ground somewhere off your property, or alternatively, down the drain of your kitchen sink) and refilled once a day for best results. Should you choose to continue this during the festival proper, the emptying/filling of the jar may become another meaningful part of the daily/nightly ritual.
The reason for clearing the negative energy of the table is to prepare it for the convivial energy of celebration that should begin to permeate the household, as the First Illumination approaches. The table is also a suggested place for a small altar or shrine for the Divine Guests of the Aegletia.
And finally, it is encouraged that participants set aside a cozy area of the home, perhaps a living room, perhaps a bedroom, or even a different room of your choosing, for the presentation of gifts or other offerings for Apollon, Leto, and Artemis. This could be done near the home’s main altar or shrine for Apollon, or a new shrine or altar created specifically for the festival. Be sure to decorate this area appropriate to your tastes, and Apollon’s liking. Another use of this space may be the creation of the farewell gifts that you will present to Apollon on the Ninth Illumination. It can be a beautiful place of love and conversation, storytelling and dance, and whatever other celebratory ways you choose. If children are present, be sure to include some age-appropriate activities for them, as well, throughout the Aegletia festival.
May all be blessed, and may our Lord see you swiftly and tenderly upon the morning of the Second Illumination.
Hail Hyperboreios! Hail Aegletes! Hail Anax, Apollon, our King!
— Treasury of Apollon