Kupalnocka! Kupała’s Night – when Moon and Sun are being wed!

Tonight is the Kupala’s Night,  a summer solstice slavonic holiday. Kupała is a god of love and fertility. The rituals that take place during the festival are related to elements of water and fire, Moon and Sun. It is a night of merging water and fire, the wedding of Moon and Sun, a divine picture of binding of man an woman together. Manly fire and feminine water would forge a new life together.

Kupała’s bonfire (source : http://www.blog.czarymary.pl)

Even bigger bonfire (Night in Lesnica)

The rituals during the holiday include: weaving wreaths by virgins, burning big bonfires (young boys and unmarried men would jump naked through those, thus proving the vitality),  releasing pots with candles on the river or lake surface, dancing, feasting and simply…making love. The orgy was always an important part of getting gods (Kupała’s – love, Svarog/Swaróg – sun and heavenly fire, Svarozhic/Swarożyc – earthly fire) kindness and blessing.. and of course having fun. On that very night it was completely acceptable for any virgin to loose her (or his) virginity and have sex, with NO restrictions, with anyone.

Wreaths and candles on the water.

The Night was the most important Slavnic religious holiday (and it remains so for Slavonic Churches). It was so important that it never really dissapeared, even though christianity tried to fight with it with full force. After an ignominious defeat christianity found another way of fighting the Ritual of Love – Kupala is spelled similarily to kąpiel (“a bath”) so they started to forge propaganda of this being a holiday of John the Baptist and baptism itself. Plus, according to the Church, John the Baptist was born on 24 June so the date was close. Till this day majority of Slavonic peoples know this day as St. John’s Eve, thinking of it more as of a day of “virgins , weaving wreaths and releasing fires” than any other religious relation 🙂

The festival of Fire.

One more thing, a true Slav never cares about Valentine’s Day. We have our own Holiday of Love 🙂

Last but not least. Wilkomir’s sister is getting married today!. Best wishes!

A reenactment and ritual (already shared by us some time ago)

Songs and pictures related to the holiday: