A great birthday party should centre around the personality, tastes and interests of the guest of honour. Help a pagan friend celebrate her birthday by including aspects of her spirituality in the celebration. Select party activities, food and gifts that have a pagan theme so your friend truly feels the party was about her, not just an excuse for the guests to eat and drink.
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If the birthday person loves chocolate, she and guests can create a sacred space to do the chocolate ritual. This tongue-in-cheek ceremony uses the language of Wiccan high magic but focuses on chocolate rather than gods or goddesses. Let the birthday person be the high priestess or priest and use a large Tootsie Roll or a chocolate-covered pretzel rod as a wand. At the point in the ritual where celebrants might usually pass a chalice of water or wine as they say to each other "may you never thirst," use chocolate liqueur as the beverage. Serve chocolate fondue, chocolate ice cream and fine chocolates for the post-ritual feast.
Find out the birthday person's favourite flavour of cake and then make one in the shape of a pentacle or place a special order for one with a bakery. Instead of the usual "Happy Birthday," inscribe a pagan message in frosting, perhaps "Bright Blessings for your Solar Return."
Altar Item Gifts
Give the kind of items a pagan might want to keep on her altar: crystals, a cauldron, a pentacle, a dark mirror, incense, essential oils or candles. You could also make or purchase a miniature travel altar kit, including small candles in the colour of the elements.
Give a new deck of tarot cards or set of runes. Or you could give her a gift token to a well-known tarot card reader or astrologer for a special birthday reading.
Paganism is rooted in nature; if weather permits, give the birthday person a party in a beautiful natural setting. If possible, get permission to use the land of someone in your social circle who has a few acres out in the country or see if you can get the necessary permission from the park service to build a bonfire. Many pagans love to drum, so you can easily get a rhythm circle together. Those who don't play drums can dance. Check and see if your friend's birthday falls near a new or full moon and choose that day to have a birthday party plus a moon ceremony.
If the birthday you are celebrating is that of your best friend or romantic partner, plan ahead and give them a vacation. You can join a pagan excursion to Stonehenge, Glastonbury, the Isle of Skye, Macchu Picchu or other locations associated with ancient magic, gods and goddesses or fairies. If your budget doesn't permit something so expensive, look at local pagan listings to see if there is an upcoming retreat or weekend workshop your friend might want to attend.
Pagan Books and Calendars
Many pagans love to read. Depending on your friend's particular interests, buy a book on astrology, multicultural goddesses, tarot, herbs or crystals. If your friend's birthday falls in the latter part of the calendar year, buy a goddess datebook or a pagan calendar or herbal almanac.
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