Cremating the Cat

Teel was alpha male, and boy he was hell of a lot of cat. He used to go off to one of his other harems for a while and then come back after a couple of weeks only this time he came back seriously underweight with breathing problems. We tried to get him to eat and before we even had a chance to phone the vet up he’d found himself a comfortable sot in the shed and kicked the bucket.

We got a bonfire going and put him on it, covering him over then with would and bark. Dad said a few words. My Dad’s also pagan so he said (in welsh) that we were grateful for his presence and the light he’d brought in our lives but now as his body was consumed by the flames his spirit was free of Earthly bonds and it was time for him to fly high with the smoke. There was a lot more than that, but we kinda just make it up as we go along and it’s hard to remember the exact words. We sit for a long time. Evening falls and the chill hugs our little circle, where we surround the bonfire. I head back into the house first. Everyone else follows soon.

After a cleansing bath (cleansing sage soap) I get my garb and collect my things for my own little ritual.

I light a candle and some incense (which is put inside a small metal cat statue), pick up a big swirly shell and a black granite rock and head outside all wrapped up and warm.

I stand in the Northern most point and say

“Ceidwad y Daear, Croesawn yma” (Guardian of the Earth, we welcome you here)

I place the granite here

In the East I place the burning incense

“Ceidwad y Gwyntoedd, Croesawn yma” (Guardian of the Winds, we welcome you here)

In the South I place the lantern with the candle in it

“Ceidwad y Tannoedd, Croesawn yma” (Guardian of the Fires, we welcome you here)

In the West I place the shell

“Ceidwad y Moroedd, Croesawn yma” (Guardian of the Seas, we welcome you here)

I stand almost in the middle (avoiding stepping on the bonfire) and shout up at the sky

“Yn enw’r Ferch, A oes Awen!” (In the name of the Maiden, let there be Awen)

“Yn enw’r Fam, A oes Awen!” (In the name of the Mother, let there be Awen)

“Yn enw’r Wrach, A oes Awen!” (In the name of the Witch – substituted for Crone -, let there be Awen)

After each time, if I was leading a ceremony with more than one person the other people would shout out ‘Awen’.

After this I sat and meditated next to the fire a long time, while still feeding it. Then I closed the circle by going around the elements again and instead of saying “Croesawn yma” I would say “Dwy’n eich rhyddhai! Ewch!” (I release you! Go!)

The next day I woke up to more. My job doesn’t end there, you see. When Teel was a kitten he and his sibs went missing, the other two showed up very quickly but he was still gone. I threatened a spirit that I would forever blind them if they didn’t return him and wiped my tears and mud over their eyes. (I get very emotional over cats haha )

Half an hour later Teel came bounding over the hedges ecstatic to see me and so I cleaned the spirit’s eyes and thanked them since for protecting him. Now he’s dead, the deal is done.

So I awoke to the sound of the wind challenging the roof to a dual (the roof always wins but there might be that one day… ) and torrential rain on the window. Only, when I went outside I discovered what I thought was rain was halestones. Every time I pushed my hood over one side of my face the wind would change and attack the other! Anyway, I got to the bonfire and embers still glowed and the ashes were all dry… In fact it didn’t seem to even rain anywhere within the circle! I collected some ashes and carried them up to the spirit and scattered them. I called out the Spirit’s name three times and thanked them for their protection of my cat. I released them.




2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. witchingwild
    Apr 30, 2012 @ 14:05:33

    Lovely ritual. Your cat was lucky to have you as a friend. Did you grow up learning welsh?


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