three weeks ago we celebrated my daughter's girl seed ceremony. A woman's body is the greatest gift to the human race that there is, because, it's pretty simple, without women's bodies there would be no human race. It is an amazing miracle, that we can grow a complete little human being in our own bodies, birth it and then produce milk to feed it. These days we have forgotten that through this we become one with the creative powers of the Goddess when we should be in awe of this fact all the time. Women's bodies are sacred and should be held sacred. In real life, read: Patriarchial societies, women's bodies are treated the opposite way. In many countries, a woman doesn't even own her own body. If a baby girl is allowed to live, she grows up to be her father's property until she becomes her husband's possession. But also in the seemingly liberal society that we live in, things are not much different: We are made to believe that we need to use lipsticks, diets, tons of work out and surgery, because our natural bodies are somehow not good enough without any artificial "improvement". Women often don't really chose themselves what cloths they want to wear and what they want to do with their hair, fashion does. Women's appearance is constantly being judged by men AND women. This reduces women to their looks and makes them mere objects, that apparantly everybody feels entitled to dictate how they should look and what they should do and not do. At the same time we are also taught that women's bodies and its functions are somehow filthy, we are taught to hide our moon time and moon blood, to be afraid all the way through pregnancy and to dread the natural act of giving birth. We have to change this! And I believe that the best way to profoundly change this is by raising girls who feel good bout themselves and in their bodies.
So it was extremely important to me to celebrate my daughter Lilith in a Girlseed Ceremony. I will give a full account of it here, hoping that it may be inspiring to you all and that you maybe will want to also celebrate your daughters in a ceremony.
The purpose of the Girlseed ceremony was to celebrate the fact that the Goddess has blessed our family with a girl child and to name our daughter's guardians. We have created a ceremony that was meaningful to us both, me, her mum and her, the daughter, borrowing ideas from several teachers and priestess sisters, different traditions, ceremonies I have attended, books I have read and so on, and of course adding a few elements of our own.
Lilith is three and a half years old now, so that gave us lots time to watch who she has a special connection with and who we thought would make a good guardian for her. Then I asked my sister priestess Simone and Mitja asked our friend of many years Daniel, and after considering they were both happy to become part of our family. We invited all our friends and family, asking them to bring a little gift for Lilith and something to share in a potluck afterwards.
On the day of the ceremony we sat down in a circle, Lilith and I sitting in the Northeast, which is the direction of the Maiden Goddess. Then Simone opened the Wheel of the Goddess by inviting the Lady in Her aspects of Maiden, Lover, Mother and Crone and we sang Carolyn Hillyer's song.
Girlseed, Bloodflower, Fruitmother, Spinmother, Midwoman, Earthcrone, Stonecrone, Bone.
I then told Lilith and the circle the story of Lilith's Motherline as far as I know it, which sadly is not very far. I know the names back until Lilith's great-great-grandmother Anne. I also recite the Motherline at Samhain and a Mother's Night at Midwinter, and hopefully Lilith and her daughters will continue after me, so the line is not forgotten but becomes longer eventually. In reciting Lilith's Motherline I focussed on the creative powers of women and told her about the many ways in which her ancestresses had been creative: in giving birth, in rebuilding their lives after losing everything in the war, in growing food, in making dresses and clothes out of shapeless yarn and fabric, in growing beautiful blossoming flowers, in creating a home of beauty where one feels welcome, in academical work, in art. And I went on from Mother to daughter by saying, i.e. "Joanne is a Goddess artist and a writer and a facilitator of meaningful ceremonies. And Joanne was blessed by the Goddess and gave birth to Lilith and Taran. Lilith is an artist who paints beautiful pictures full of colours and smiling faces and she also makes up songs on the spot, which she sings to express how she feels..." Because my daughter does that and I honour her for that.
It is a blessing to have a daughter for a first-born, because in her the Motherline becomes manifest.
I finished reciting Lilith's Motherline by telling her that she was only at the beginning of her life and that she had all this creative heritage to draw from in her growing, unfolding and become fully who she was. And to remind her of her creative power and as a blessing that my little girl may become a strong, talI woman, I gave her an apple pip. When I was pregnant with Lilith I made a little medicine pouch for her from salmon leather (She is a water child) in which we keep the apple pip. This will become Lilith's medicine bag and in the course of her life she will be given other items in meaningful ceremonies, which she can keep in there as well.
Every girl on the planet - all of our daughters - are sparks of embodied light. Our job is to reflect that light as they are forming their sense of self.
Marita, who facilitated the ceremony, then tied Lilith's and my wrist together with a red thread to symbolise our blood connection. She then blessed us both with the elements.
Then Lilith and Simone's wrists were tied together with a cord that Lilith had made before, choosing the colours herself., to symbolise that she now also has Simone to turn to, beside her mum, when she needs help or advice or the likes. Simone then went into the four directions with her to pick up little gifts symbolising the four elements for Lilith's Goddess altar.
Then Daniel's and Lilith's wrists were tied together with another piece of Lilith's cord and Daniel knelt down and promised Lilith to always treat her on eye level. Then he put her up on to his shoulders promising her to help her see further. It was very simple and very moving. He also gave her a gift and then everybody gave Lilith the gifts they had brought for her to celebrate her for being a girl. While this was going on the whole circle was singing songs about the strength of women and about the connection to the elements, so that whoever was giving Lilith her gift could say a few words and give her a blessing without everybody hearing the words.
Afterwards Simone took Lilith to my Goddess shrine where they both said a prayer together and left some rose petals as an offering. Then Simone closed the Wheel and gave thanks to the Goddess, and we all shared the marvellous food and had coffee.
I loved watching my little daughter, who had been so solemn and focussed during the ceremony, then show her wild side and together with her kindergarden friend begin wrecking the house, shouting, screaming, running down the halls, pulling out all her toys from the shelves. It was wonderful to see those two girls so wild and free.
The ceremony was so beautiful and touched us all. We are healing the world one little girl at a time.
And of course now I am thinking about what rites are needed to raise my beautiful son so that he grows into a strong, healthy, peaceloving man.
By the way, I came across the name Girlseed in Carolyn Hillyer's work. She has released a fabulous album and book about Women's Rites called Old Silver Wheel, which has also been translated into German (Haus der Frauen). It is full of wisdom and good ideas.
Much love and blessings to all the girls out in the world and to all the women and men who raise them to become strong, healthy and tall women who support each other as sisters xxxxxxx