How the Wheel of the Year works Differently “Down Under”

co-written by Adam Barralet

This year has been an exciting one at WiccanSeminary.EDU. As we bring WiccanSeminary.EDU Australia online, we have discovered many new and wonderful things about our brothers and sisters from the Southern Hemisphere. Wicca begs us to ask questions that lead us to enlightening answers. As we worked with our new Australian Dean, Adam Barralet (BEAR-uh-lay), and his assistant Phoenix Silverstar, a new and unexpected question emerged.

“The seasons are opposite, does that make a difference? How do the current Witches practice down there? And ultimately, IF the sabbats are celebrated during different Astrological times of the year, wouldn’t that have an effect on the energy of the Sabbat? And if YES, then What would those changes mean?”

My lifelong work has been about decoding Wicca as an astrological mystery religion, so this was a very juicy brain teaser of a question. Since I had never been to the Southern Hemisphere, I could not know what the energy is like, or how it would be different. So I pulled out my scientific baseline for studying Wicca, “The Wheel of WISE” and began the deciphering process. I figured after forming a theory, we would compare what I found to Adam’s experience.

Bella's Wheel of WISEThe Wheel of WISE is my brainchild. It started during my formal training, as my teacher had a wooden spell wheel with what was considered the usual correspondences on it. I loved it. Everyone that came into his shop loved it. After we lost contact, I worked to recreate it. After 15 years of study and tweaking, what emerged changed the way I study magic. I use this wheel in my teachings to help my students and I refer to it any time new questions arise in my practice. The Wheel of WISE helps keep me on track, “As Above, So Below,” with the sacred sciences our religion is built upon. It keeps me from losing my way or wandering off on a magical tangent. Scientists call this a scientific baseline. I find it an invaluable tool that answers every question I have put to it. This time was no exception.

When the question came, I found some interesting answers that are in flow with the questions of our time. I found that those born in the Southern Hemisphere are born into a different energy altogether. I remembered a public service commercial jingle that echoed the sentiment perfectly, and it kept ringing in my head as I worked through this project. It was as though my guides were chanting it, “More WE less ME.” I felt we were uncovering something very important to our changing, Post-2012 universe. Whereas the overriding theme in the Northern Hemisphere is the success of the individual, the Southern hemisphere has more of a focus towards success of the community as a whole. Here each individual in the south determines their value based on their ability to contribute to those around them.

Interesting shifts can be noticed where the attitudes of the Northern Hemisphere (which has dominated history in the last few hundred years) about success of the individual has come at the determinant of the greater whole. We now see shifts in consciousness as people across the globe resent individuals, such as the super rich, and are turning back to valuing grassroots and community projects that benefit the whole. This demonstrates a more altruistic existence for humanity. I couldn’t wait to share what I found with the officers at Wiccan Seminary and hear Adam’s thoughts.

Adam explained that most of the people in the Southern Hemisphere only change the times that they present the sabbats, meaning they celebrate Yule in June, rather than December. He tells us that the Gardenarians he knows hold true to the BOS regardless of the season or weather, as the Sun is still in that Astrological sign, no matter where you are on the globe. We had no working precedent or tradition to reference when moving forward with this study other than our own astrological knowledge and understanding of the sabbats. It was an enchanting challenge to unravel these energies.

What we discovered is that in the Southern Hemisphere you are born into a universe of Relationships (Libra), instead of one focused on the Self (Aries), where you are a part of something that already exists. Your experience with the world around you is as a member of something larger than yourself – a family, a tribe, a village, etc. As I discussed this perspective with Adam, who also hasn’t experienced the Northern Hemisphere wheel, we discovered some very important differences in the world view. Understanding these differences can deeply enrich both halves of our globe.

In an effort to share a quick overview of this exciting information, rather than present a long narrative, I offer the following table. This has ended up being groundbreaking in our view of the Southern Wheel of the Year. We are very excited to be presenting this new information in the Wheel of the Year – Southern Hemisphere class starting this January at WiccanSeminary.EDU at new times that are convenient for our Australian and European Students.

Northern Hemisphere

Southern Hemisphere

Ostara at Aries
Aries is about SELF
Ostara at Libra
Libra is about RELATIONSHIPS
Born into a world that didn’t exist before your arrival. Everything in the world is there for you to use to obtain your goals, wants and desires. We define our surroundings by things that are “mine” and “not mine”. We learn of Sacred Selfishness, and the right to thrive. Born into a relationship, where you are defined by your place in the family, tribe or village. Your focus is on where you fit in, and what role you play in the whole. We share resources. We look to see how their talents and abilities can benefit the group.
This is a time for regaining balance, a constant task of Librans. We are shifting from a time of solitude to a more social time. We prepare ourselves and start to birth projects that will enable us to contribute to the Greater Good. As the weather warms we enjoy more social activities such as BBQs and beach visits. “Mateship”, the concept that we stick by each other, is a theme that is given attention at this time.
Beltaine at Taurus
Taurus is about LOVE
Beltaine at Scorpio
Scorpio is about POWER
We seek our partner, the one that makes our heart sing. LOVE is our number one motivation. How the person makes us feel, and what they bring to our world, is the number one consideration. We often fall in love with someone who isn’t good for us in other areas and we work towards learning to be good for each other, so that we can experience the elation of the chemical responses that our company elicits. We seek a partner that compliments our purpose, as well as the family or tribe. One that helps us accomplish our larger goals. We connect with those who help us be better people and who make us more successful in our endeavors. This is also a time when we are summoning and gathering power for our projects. We find strength and passion within and seek resources and people who can help us succeed.
Litha at Cancer
Cancer is about MOTHER & HOME
Litha at Capricorn
Capricorn is about FATHER & REPUTATION
At Litha we look for our purpose, what we are supposed to be doing with our life, and how our current surroundings support that purpose. We build a life and nurture a home that supports our needs, and look to improve on ourselves that we may be better able to achieve our goals. At Litha in Capricorn we are focused on how what we do builds our value to the group. We are concerned about how our actions bring honor to our house. We focus on how to apply our skills and talents in a purposeful way to build a positive reputation within our community.
Lammas at Leo
Leo is about being APPRECIATED for your INDIVIDUALITY
Lammas at Aquarius
Aquarius is about REVOLUTIONARY THOUGHT & HELPING OTHERS
At Lammas we are experiencing the mastery of our skill and accomplishment. We evaluate our achievements based on how we feel looking at ourselves in the mirror. We thank the Gods for all that they have given us, and demonstrate what greatness we have accomplished with the resources we have been given. We take pride in our work, and appreciate what was sacrificed to achieve it. This is a time to reflect on the past cycle. Conscious of those around us, we evaluate our successes often by the reaction of our peers. If we have made a positive change and evoked reassuring feedback, we feel good about our actions. If we have become selfish and forgotten about the welfare of the community, we shall be cut down. In Australia, we have a dislike of over-achievers or showing off. We call it “tall poppy syndrome,” meaning we disapprove of those who attempt to better themselves at the expense of others. This shows the cultural difference of focus on growing the self where in Australia, if you grow too much of the self, it shows that you don’t do enough to help others.
Mabon at Libra
Libra is about RELATIONSHIPS
Mabon at Aries
Aries is about SELF
Mabon at Libra is the time that we die and return to the All. It’s the time when we truly experience ourselves as part of a whole, something larger than ourselves. We no longer experience the world as an individual striving to accomplish something. This is the time that we have completed our work and we take time for ourselves, to rest. Each individual reflects on what they did and looks at what they can do in preparation for the next year to contribute to the community. It is a time of solace and much attention is given in comparing your work to that of others.
Samhain at Scorpio
Scorpio is about POWER
Samhain at Taurus
Taurus is about LOVE
At Samhain in Scorpio we are merged with the All. We are one with the Goddess. We are part of the whole, the ultimate power in the Universe. We are reunited with loved ones, soul mates, soul families and celebrate our time of reuniting with our true nature. On a microcosmic level, this is the time of year when we start our holiday season and make plans to travel to visit family. In Australia they see the dying process as Earth taking you back to her breast to nurture you again. In the north, many of our religions see you dying with your soul rising up to the sky. In the south, they see you as returning to the earth. Many of the Australian Aboriginal myths and stories. Much of it looks at the land and its animals and how they came to be. There is a great focus on connection to the Earth rather than the Heavens.
Yule at Capricorn
Capricorn is about FATHER & REPUTATION
Yule at Cancer
Cancer is about MOTHER & HOME
Here we honor and express gratitude to those that helped us throughout the year with gifts. We forgive those who might have hurt us, and focus on being good people and doing good deeds. This is the time of year to take stock in ourselves, to look at how we were able to be of service in the previous year, and how we can build on that in the coming year. We give gifts that are helpful and needed, especially to those less fortunate.
Imbolc at Aquarius
Aquarius is about REVOLUTIONARY THOUGHT & HELPING OTHERS
Imbolc at Leo
Leo is about being APPRECIATED for your INDIVIDUALITY
We set goals for the new Year. This is the time when we make long term plans and when are the most connected to our higher purpose. We plan our next incarnation so that we can easily fulfill our purpose. This is the time when we look at how our unique qualities serve the greater good. We take personal stock and plan our next incarnation based on where we can put our individual qualities to best use for the benefit of the group.

Adam Barralet is a third degree ATC Priest with training from various traditions. He works closely with Lady Amaris, the Archpriestess of the Church of Wicca Australia – ATC. He has recently joined WiccanSeminary.EDU as the Dean of Wiccan Seminary Australia. Adam has brought an exciting new perspective to our school, with his Southern Hemisphere viewpoint. Expect his new book “Crystal Connections” to be released on the market this coming year.

Belladonna Laveau is the new Archpriestess of the Aquarian Tabernacle Church, Intl., following in the footsteps of Pete “Pathfinder” Davis, who is now retired. As Dean of WiccanSeminary.EDU, Bella is weaving a web of connectedness between the leaders in the ATC, and working to bring the vast knowledge and experience of the ATC Clergy together within the Seminary to provide consistent, high-quality training to the next generation of Witches. Bella’s book, “Awakening Spirit”, is used by the US Military to help chaplains minister to Wiccan Troops, and is part of the Freshman core curriculum in the Seminary.


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How the Wheel of the Year works Differently “Down Under” — 1 Comment

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