Unitarian Universalism draws its faith from many sources, including the spiritual teachings of earth-centered traditions that celebrate the sacred circle of life and inspire us to live in harmony with the rhythms of nature.
At the Unitarian Society of Germantown, EarthSpirit Circle (ESC) celebrates life in sync with Mother Nature through joyous dance, chants, stories and poems, rituals, meditations, and sharing circles that acknowledge the changing seasons of the year and in ourselves. We are an eclectic group of both peritheists, who see ancient deities as symbols of qualities we harbor within, and polytheists, who believe in the actual existence of nature spirits. We draw upon nature-based traditions of the past, reinterpreting them from our 21st century perspective, adapting them to our more urban environment, and adding to them using our creative energies to devise inspiring celebrations relevant to our own lives and experiences.
Wheel of the Year Holidays (Sabbats)
ESC gathers to celebrate the eight Wheel of the Year holidays, or sabbats, of the Neopagan/Wiccan calendar. However, we encourage practitioners of nature-based traditions worldwide to come and share their Earth-honoring customs and insights in community. Those with an interest in, but no prior experience with, nature-based spirituality are also welcome!
Below is a list of the Wheel of the Year holidays, a modern interpretation of their themes (there are many), and the month in which each is celebrated.
- October: Samhain
The Celtic New Year. We honor our dead & commit ourselves to the future.
- December: Yule / Winter Solstice
We honor the longest night of the year & the restorative power of rest & reflection.
- February: Imbolc
Time of Personal Inspiration. We reflect on our skills & articulate our creative goal for the year.
- March: Ostara / Spring Equinox
We honor the reawakening of the Earth in spring & the shift from the reflective dark to the active light seasons of the year.
- May: Beltane
The Gathering Season Returns. We honor our new & renewed relationships.
- June: Litha / Summer Solstice
We honor the longest day of the year & the opportunity to make the most of our time in the sun.
- August: Lughnasa
Time of Community Labor. We honor the abilities we bring together at work & play that benefit the community.
- September: Mabon / Autumn Equinox
We honor the Earth’s bounty at harvest time & the shift from the light to the dark seasons of the year.
2022 Schedule of ESC Planning Meetings and Celebrations
Anyone interested in suggesting, presenting, or leading a celebration piece for the next sabbat is welcome to attend. Click above for the EarthSpirit Circle Planning Meeting and Celebration Schedule for 2022.
For a list of upcoming meetings and celebrations, look to the right side or bottom of your screen.
ESC Mailing List
For more information on EarthSpirit Circle at the United Society of Germantown, or to be added to our Planning Meeting and/or Wheel of the Year Celebrations Notification email lists and receive the Zoom link for our gatherings, contact the ESC Coordinators at firstname.lastname@example.org