And howling dogs in glimmering light advance,
Ere Hekate came."
The Night of Hecate is November 16. If you honor Hekate on no other night, this is the one I would suggest. This is Her night and She is closer to us than on any other.
Hekate is seen in many ways. In ancient Greek myth, She is called a maiden. Medieval and modern times portray Her as a crone. The Goddess Hecate is a goddess of the night, the full and dark moons, crossroads, life and death, transformation and transitions. She is a Keeper of wisdom, the unconscious mind and is considered to be the queen goddess of magic. Hekate holds the keys to the Gates of the Underworld and to all mysteries. Ancient Greeks placed statues of Her at the doorways for protection. For those who honor Her, She will bestow many gifts, including magical abilities and prosperity.
For me, Hekate is ageless; She is maiden, mother and crone, all at the same time. When first drawn to Her, many years ago, I had very few resources from which to study. The only information available to me (no internet at that time) was that of Her aspect as crone; I saw Her as part of the maiden, mother, crone myth. However, it never seemed quite right, other images, those of a younger, stronger goddess came to me. Eventually over years of study, I found the Hekate I knew was the one who called to me, the Hekate of classical Greece, of pre-classical Greece and Asia Minor and as part of the triplet Artemis, Selene and Hekate.
However She presents Herself to you, give honor to Her by sitting in some quiet place, lighting candles, invoking Her and then leaving offerings of any of the following or combination: garlic, eggs, almonds, barley, pomegranate and/or seeds, figs, dates, apples and olives as well as the wood and/or leaves of willow and yew. I also offer dark sweet spices such as cloves, cinnamon and nutmeg. A libation can also made to Hekate. Spiced wine or cider laced with honey should be placed in an offering cup or chalice, placed on the ground and gently tipped over to flow into the earth. The offerings should be placed directly on the ground as well. The offerings and libations can be left at a place you find sacred. A crossroads is an especially powerful place to leave the offerings - any quiet intersection where you can place them safely will do. When you have placed the offerings and made your libation, walk away and do not look back, especially if you have made some petition. This is a very good time to dedicate yourself to Hekate if you are so inclined and have been feeling yourself drawn to Her.
Titles & Other Names:
Chthonian/Khthoniai (Of the Earth/Underworld Goddess)
Propylaia (The One Before the Gates)
Enodia (Of the Paths)
Propolos (The Attendant Who Leads)
Trivia (Of the Three Roads)
Kleidouchos (Keeper of the Keys)
The Distant One
Queen of Night
Queen of the Ghosts
Queen of the Witches
Mother of Witches
Mistress of Magic
Most Lovely One
Prytania "The Invincible Queen Of The Dead
Nyktipolis Khthonie (Night Wanderer of the Underworld)
Antaia (Sender of Nocturnal Visions)
Brimo (Terrifying, also meaning the crackling of fire)
Tomorrow night will find me at our hearth where my altar is located, lighting candles, making invocations and prayers, then casting myself beyond the hedge into some journey work. I will finish with a little magic. When my workings are complete, I will make my libation and offerings at the hedge circle outside Toadstool Condo.
I invoke You, Beloved Hekate of the Crossroads and the Three Ways.
Saffron-cloaked Goddess of the Heavens, the Underworld and the Sea.
She who guides the souls of the dead, She who lights the Path.
Nightgoing One, Unconquerable Queen, Tauropolos,
Keyholding Mistress, Ruler, Nymph, Maiden.
Come, be present at these, my sacred rites.
(adaptation of the Homeric Hymn to Hekate by EAK)
Hail, mighty Hekate of the Threshold,
Keeper of the Keys to all Mysteries,
Mother of Magic, Mother of Night,
Guide me with Thy luminous light
And make it laden with good things.
Drive from me those things that do not serve my highest good
And when my soul rages about worldly things,
Deliver me purified by Your soul-stirring rituals.
Reveal to me the pathways of divine guidance that I long for,
Then shall I gaze upon Your precious light.
Give me Your hand and when I am weary
Bring me to the haven of Your cave with Your winds.
Hail, many-named Mother, Hekate of the Threshold!
(adapted by EAK from Proclus Diadochus' Hymn VI To Hekate & Janus)
May all of you who take time to celebrate Hekate on Her night, receive Her blessings and magic!