Your browser does not support script
TWV Presents...

Popular Pagan Holidays

[Show all]

Views: 6,680,935

Holiday: ...

Autumn: The Croning Time

Daily Goddess Awareness

Well, You Don’t Celebrate Christmas...

It's Beginning to Look a Lot Like Chri... Yuletide!

For A Religion So Opposed to Paganism, You Sure Stole a Lot of Our Stuff!

Samhain: A Time for Introspection---and Activism

The Dark Half of the Year

The Halloween Witch: Sense of Humor or Sense of Ire

Ah...To Be A Witch...

Winter Solstice By Any Other Name

Anti-Witch Bigotry: Still As Popular and Deadly As Ever

La Befana

Spiritual Aspects of Yule

The Beltaine Storm

Winter Holiday Intentions and Food Magik

Ostara...It's Not Just For Kiddies Anymore!

Autumn Equinox: A Point of Balance on the Wheel of the Year

Lughnasadh: The Deeper Meaning

Imbolc: Traditional Celebrations for a Modern Time

Alicia Meets Grandmother Autumn: A Children’s Story

A Meditation on Samhain: How Lucky You Are.

The Solstice Flame: A Yule Story

Traditional Yule: Make your Own Homebrewed Mead

The Tale of the Holly King and the Oak King

Supermoms’ and Superdads’ Defense Against “Holiday Kryptonite”

Ostara: Enter the Light!

A Celtic View of Samhain

A Story For Autumn

Samhain: Learning to Release


A Summer Solstice Primer

The Oak King and the Holly King Revisited

The Best Thing About Death

Winter: A Joyous Holiday Season

Witches Lost in Halloween

Imbolc...or As The Wheel Turns

The Babylonian Ghost Festival

The Celtic Origins of Samhain

The Sacredness of Halloween

The Theme of Mabon

Dealing with the Darkness, Post-Samhain

Don’t Waste That Pumpkin!

The Samhain Experience

Lughnasa: Festival of the Harvest (A Druid's Perspective)

First Thanksgiving... in China

Solstice of the Soul

A White Christmas in Fuyang

Love Lives On: A Samhain Reflection on Death, Rebirth, and the Afterlife

Beltane Beyond Sex


Solstice Swim at Beach 69, Puako, Hawaii

A Samhain Dance

Yule and the New Year

Imbolg - A Lesson of Positive Change

Ancestor Stew

The Story of Ostara

Planning A Good Death: A Samhain Process

The First Yule

A Yule Story for Children ~ The Tiniest Fairy ~

Unity During Samhain

Season of the Blues

Yule...and Saturnalia Smurf Hats

Mabon..Balance and Reflection


Easter is Pagan

Bealtine: Blessing the Summer In

Thanksgiving Memories of a Native American Witch

Yuletide Thoughts, Life and Death

Ghosts, Omens, and Fact-Finding: Wandering In Today's Eco-Interface

The Blood is in the Land

Groundhog's Day is American for Imbolc

Preparing for Summerland During Samhain


Sandy Was The Name Of the Dark Goddess This Samhain

When The Crone Pays A Visit, You'd Better Pay Attention

Brighid's Healing Sword: Imbolc

The Summer Solstice: A Time for Awakening

Yules Lessons from Days of Yore: Perfect Love, Perfect Trust

The Promise of the Harvest

Samhain is Ablaze with Reflections of My Father

NOTE: For a complete list of articles related to this chapter... Visit the Main Index FOR this section.

Article Specs

Article ID: 14016

VoxAcct: 373088

Section: holidays

Age Group: Adult

Days Up: 1,405

Times Read: 5,311

RSS Views: 13,604
The Oak King and the Holly King Revisited

Author: Rose Hollow
Posted: June 20th. 2010
Times Viewed: 5,311

“A little longer...what doesn't kill you only makes you stronger.” my mantra while I meditate during the heat of the day. I am becoming one with the plants at midsummer. My roots are in the ground, my petals collecting sun rays and preparing for my own photosynthesis. I have to push past my barrier, my own comfort meter screaming and about to burst.

“A little more....”

I am sweating profusely with my eyes shut tight, a practical measure more than metaphysical one due to the fact that sweat burns when in your eyes. I am focusing on the heat, feeling the rays hit me and shine down into my skin, down deep into the inner recesses of my being and bringing light into the dark caverns of my soul. I look there for things I don't want to face, things that no one wants to face there, really. Memories that were secreted away hoping to be forgotten, acts and deeds that we want to forget, all illuminated for me to see.

Yes, I am doing shadow work at Litha, and why not? There is so much power and illumination during the longest day of the year. This is one holiday where your inner star is set to shine and your own personal power is at its height. Leaving it rest is like raising a cone of power and not releasing it. Doesn't make much sense does it? While I am busy doing my self-discovery mission, the old Gods of nature are, too. The Oak king is slain by the Holly king; they are one in the same. The Oak king symbolizes growth and expansion. One can only grow and expand for so long before the experience is complete.

When I was a child, I asked my grandmother why old people died. She told me that it was because they had used up all of their life and their experience jar was full. The Holly king represents withdrawal, lessons, and reflection. The Holly king is taking the Oak king to a place where he can dump out his experience jar and look at all the neat stuff he has collected and sort through it-- getting rid of things he doesn't need want, and keeping those he does. Not every experience is a good one, but it can be learned from if reflected and examined upon.

The feelings from each memory and situation come flooding back to me. Shame, inadequacy, over achievement, under achievement, and disgrace, just the same as when the memory was buried. Tears start to well up in my tightly shut eyes. I let them spill onto my face, but they do not stay long. In my moment of despair I feel the liquid gold of the sun hit my head and dry my tears. I feel the power of Litha and the Sun God seep into my skin and slowly sink down into me. Everywhere it touches, negativity and unforgiving self-criticism clings to it and in its wake is left positive energy and self-love. I feel the sensation with building excitement as it goes deeper and deeper into me. Finally it reaches the forgotten memories. I walk up to each one and watch what is happening. I see the golden ooze wash over the memory and take away the pain associated with it. The most amazing thing has happened! The memory is still there, but I no longer feel negative toward it. I examine it more closely. I realize a lesson has just been learned, experience has been gained, and I am able to move on from this memory. Self-forgiveness has been attained.

You will be pleasantly surprised that you can forgive even the most egregious mistakes once you learn from them because then the things that happened now have a purpose. Be careful that you do this objectively. If you go and find deep hidden things in the path, don't dwell there and become their victim. People who live in the past reside in “shouldawouldacoulda land”.

The past is there and there is nothing we can change about it but our perspective of it. Just like we can't be constantly expanding and growing, we can't constantly be reflecting on the past. Once our lessons have been learned, we must go out to grow and expand. Just like at the winter solstice when the Oak king slays the Holly king, he has a new chance and lease on life. He then in turn grows in his power until midsummer when the cycle repeats itself. The powerful symbolism of their relationship and seasonal play is an important lesson that isn't taught in enough pagan circles these days. It gets a brief mention in beginner books and is left at that. It teaches an important balance between inner and outer, light and dark.

Each memory gets purified and with each one, I feel more whole and more content. After the last memory has been cleansed, I see the golden liquid sink down deep into my roots and into the ground. I am left in a moment of comfortable content, my photosynthesis complete. I took sunlight, used my spiritual waste, and my tears and turned it into energy for growth. I open my eyes and feel renewed. I feel like I can take on the world. I feel alive.

Litha is the perfect day to look for things we normally don't want to see. It's after all the longest day of the year; we might as well use all of that sunlight for something, right? I challenge you to look into your experience jar and use the power of Litha to illuminate those you may not want to remember, change your perspective, and turn them from mistakes to lessons. Then take your new knowledge and use it to strengthen your subsequent harvests. Never be afraid of those bad experiences, they are just lessons that haven't been learned yet.

Happy Litha and Blessed Be!



Rose Hollow

Location: Fort Worth, Texas

Author's Profile: To learn more about Rose Hollow - Click HERE

Other Articles: Rose Hollow has posted 1 additional articles- View them?

Other Listings: To view ALL of my listings: Click HERE

Email Rose Hollow... (Yes! I have opted to receive invites to Pagan events, groups, and commercial sales)

To send a private message to Rose Hollow ...

Pagan Essays

Pagan Web
8,000 Links

Pagan Groups
Local Covens etc.

80,000 Profiles

Home - TWV Logos - Email US - Privacy
News and Information

Chapters: Pagan/Heathen Basics - Pagan BOOKS - Traditions, Paths & Religions - Popular Pagan Holidays - TV & Movies - Cats of the Craft - Festival Reviews - Festival Tips - White Pages (Resources) - Issues/Concerns - West Memphis 3 - Witch Hunts - Pagan Protection Tips - Healing Planet Earth

Your Voices: Adult Essays - Young Pagan Essays - Pagan Perspectives (On Hold) - WitchWars: Fire in the Craft - Gay Pagan - Pagan Parenting - Military - Pagan Passages

Pagan Music: Pagan Musicians - Bardic Circle at WitchVox - Free Music from TWV

Vox Central: About TWV - Wren: Words, Wrants and Wramblings - Guest Rants - Past Surveys - A Quest for Unity

Weekly Updates: Click HERE for an index of our weekly updates for the past 6 years

W.O.T.W. - World-Wide Networking

Your Town: A Link to YOUR Area Page (The largest listing of Witches, Pagans, Heathens and Wiccans on the Planet)

VoxLinks: The Pagan Web: 8,000 Listings

Your Witchvox Account: Log in Now - Create New Account - Request New Password - Log in Problems

Personal Listings: Pagan Clergy in Your Town - Adult Pagans - Young Pagans - Military Pagans

Events: Circles, Gatherings, Workshops & Festivals

Covens/Groups/Orgs: Local Groups Main Page

Other LOCAL Resources: Local Shops - Regional Sites - Local Notices - Global/National Notices - Local Skills & Services - Local Egroups - Political Freedom Fighters

Pagan Shopping: Online Shops Index - Original Crafters Sites - Auction Sites - Pagan Wholesalers - Pagan Local Shops

Web Site Content (including: text - graphics - html - look & feel)
Copyright 1997-2014 The Witches' Voice Inc. All rights reserved
Note: Authors & Artists retain the copyright for their work(s) on this website.
Unauthorized reproduction without prior permission is a violation of copyright laws.

Website structure, evolution and php coding by Fritz Jung on a Macintosh G5.

Any and all personal political opinions expressed in the public listing sections (including, but not restricted to, personals, events, groups, shops, Wren’s Nest, etc.) are solely those of the author(s) and do not reflect the opinion of The Witches’ Voice, Inc. TWV is a nonprofit, nonpartisan educational organization.

Sponsorship: Visit the Witches' Voice Sponsor Page for info on how you
can help support this Community Resource. Donations ARE Tax Deductible.
The Witches' Voice carries a 501(c)(3) certificate and a Federal Tax ID.

Mail Us: The Witches' Voice Inc., P.O. Box 341018, Tampa, Florida 33694-1018 U.S.A.
Witches, Pagans
of The World

Search Articles

 Current Topic
 Editorial Guide

NOTE: The essay on this page contains the writings and opinions of the listed author(s) and is not necessarily shared or endorsed by the Witches' Voice inc.

The Witches' Voice does not verify or attest to the historical accuracy contained in the content of this essay.

All WitchVox essays contain a valid email address, feel free to send your comments, thoughts or concerns directly to the listed author(s).