This is from my old blog, the Geekie Hellenist.
This is the ritual that I’ve chosen for Genesia. It’s not completely ancient but modern. It centers around Hermes, Hades, Persephone, and Hecate. These are all underworld deities, though Hermes is considered an Olympian. I hope that you enjoy it and it gives you ideas. You can change things, if you want.
1) Purify the Altar area.
2) Take the barley and say, “As it was done in ancient times. I purify and cleanse this altar with this barley. With this barley I purify this altar and space so that I may give offerings, libations, and speak with glory and respect the gods of Mt. Olympus.”
3) Light a candle and say a hymn to Hestia.
Hestia, you who guard the sacred shrine of the Lord Apollon. The far-darter at goodly Pathos. With soft oil dripping ever from your locks. Come now to this house, come having one mind with Zeus the all wise-draw near, and with all bestow favor upon my song.”
Prayer to Hestia
Hestia, gracious goddess who sits at the heart of each home, who lives in the heart of each one who reveres you, each one who holds you dear, each one who turns to you for strength and harmony.
Hestia, goddess most needful, goddess most serene, goddess most esteemed, the heart of the city is yours as well, great goddess; within your realm are those who serve the state, who work for all the good of all–your blessings fall on the honest, goddess, your wrath on the corrupt, on those who betray their trust for gain. Defender of the householder, guardian of the hearthfire, Hestia, I praise and honor you.
4) Let Hades know that your here by saying, “Hades, hear me.” Since he doesn’t have titles then you would just tell him why your even using his name, which is to honor the dead.
5) Do an Invocation to Hades.
I call to Hades, lord of the dusky underworld, lord of the dead, provider of hearth and home to those who have passed from our presence. Mighty one, elder son of ancient Kronos and good Rhea, devoted husband of tender Persephone, to your hall do all men make their way one day. The riches of the earth are yours as well, Hades; all the precious gems locked inside sturdy stone, all the rich ores held within your realm; the seeds buried in the soil, waiting to pierce the surface, are likewise of your domain. Benevolent Hades, granter of wealth, from your hands fall riches untold; master of dreams, through you do our beloved dead yet speak; holder of the gates of the world to come, Hades, final friend of mankind, I call to you.
6) Do a Prayer to Hades.
Great-hearted Hades, lord of the afterworld, noble husband of gracious Persephone, daughter of the earth who shares your golden throne; advocate of the dead whose wrath falls on those who deny them due burial, or whose dishonor endures beyond the grave.
Relentless Hades, agent of vengeance, friend of the Furies, long is your arm, long your memory.
Lord of riches, lord of wealth, yours is the abundance of the depths, the cold, unyielding treasure of metal and stone; yours is the black dirt turned by the plow each spring, the sun-warmed soil that hides the seed.
Hades, dark-haired son of Kronos, ruler of the world beyond us, inevitable host of men and women, I thank you for your care of those who have passed; I praise you, I honor you, I revere your name.
7) Do a Hymn to Hades
Beneath the hills and wrapped in night, the cavernous plains below, the realm of Hades.
Mystic Hades, Holder of the Keys of Earth,
Incline Thy sacred ear, unlock Thy deep and adamantine gates, and bring abundant fruits to bear.
All needy mortals pray to Thee, and You reply with riches from your hidden chambers.
The seat of Gods, the basis of mankind is fixed upon Thine Avernean throne in the Underworld,
Distant, unknown to rest, where darkness reigns, and destitute of breath, pale specters dwell.
In dread Acheron, whose depths are shrouded, And Earth’s stable roots are held secure,
Thou determines the fates of the dead, heeding the council of Queen Persephone, Thy wife.
In Thy black chariot, by sable horses drawn rapt over the deep, in the wondrous cave of Atthis,
the wide gates display the entrance to Thy realm devoid of light.
Thou shelters mortal souls in the comforting heart of Gaia, in the dark womb of Earth.
Father of Dionysus, of subtle works, Thou alone are the author, visible and known.
Teacher of Mysteries, Rapturous Lover, Power All Ruling, Holy Giver of Hope,
who delights in the hymns of sacred poets,
Grant favor to the work of Your Priestesses and Priests,
And rejoicing come, for Holy rites are Thine.
8) Let Hermes know that your here by saying, “Hermes, hear me” This isn’t a command, this is letting him know that your here. Say his titles (if you know them) and then tell him which offerings, if any, that you’ve made to him. Also let him know of any thing that he’s done for you. It’s a kind reminder that you still remember what he’s granted you and what you’ve offered to him in the past. Let him know why you have called him, which is to honor the dead that he has walked with.
9) Do an Invocation to Hermes
“I call to Hermes, son of thundering Zeus and gracious Maia, fair of face and kind of heart; father of Tyche, granter of serendipity.
In rugged Arcadia, land of your birth, were you well known and praised by one and all; in all the ancient world did you receive honors.
Throughout the land stood herms and mounded stones, at crossroads and at boundaries, in all the far-flung provinces, marking the path and holding your gift of fortune, Far-journeying Hermes, guide of the traveler, fleet-footed god of merchants, god of gamblers and thieves and all who live by wit and while and clever words, master of discretion and finesse.
Hermes, protector of the home, provider of feast and frolic, courier of dreams, kind Hermes, I call to you.”
10) Do a Prayer to Hermes.
Hermes of the ready wit and the lightning smile, wing-footed one who carries the words of the gods, compassionate one who guides the newly-dead to the halls of Hades and fair Persephone, quick-thinking one who takes interest in the world and works of mankind, whose hand we see in the run of luck and a clever scheme, I call to you.
Hermes, bearer of the herald’s staff, your gifts are great.
You guard the homes with constancy and care, you grant to us a portion of your own craft and while, you join with us when we revel and are merry, you stand with us when we are far from home, alone.
You are ever with us, O Hermes; O god who holds in hand the good of men, I honor you.
11) Do the Hymn to Hermes
“I sing of Cyllenian Hermes, Slayer of Argus, lord of Cyllene and Arcadia rich in flocks, luck-bringing messenger of the deathless gods. He was born of Maia, the daughter of Atlas, when she had made love to Zeus,–a shy goddess she. Ever she avoided the throng of the blessed gods and lived in a shadowy cave, and there the Son of Cronos used to lie with the rich-tressed nymph at dead of night, while white-armed Hera lay bound in sweet sleep: and neither deathless god nor mortal man knew it.
And so hail to you, Son of Zeus and Maia; with you I have begun: now I will turn to another song!
Hail, Hermes, giver of grace, guide, and giver of good things!
12) Let Persephone know that your here. Say, “Persephone, here me.” Let her know why your calling on her, which is to honor the dead.
13) Do a Invocation to Persephone.
I call to Persephone, fair child of Demeter and thundering Zeus, springtime-loving goddess, light-footed goddess, in fields of flowers you dance; the lovely nymphs are your dearest companions. Beloved bride of noble Hades, gracious mistress of the deep underworld, of such stark beauty and tranquil majesty, queen of ghosts, advocate of the dead. Always beauty surrounds you, goddess, whether with your feet amidst the brightest blossoms, the light of ever-watchful Helios bright against your unbound hair as you roam the green meadows, or enthroned in splendor beneath the earth among the brilliant stones, the gold and silver that were your bride-gift. Blessed Persephone, who knows much of life and much of death, I call to you.
14) Do a Prayer to Persephone.
Fair-haired Persephone, daughter of Demeter, friend of the nymphs, merry-hearted girls who dance bearefooted and play, carefree, in grassy fields, wreathed in bright spring flowers.
The joy of life is yours, goddess, the comfort of sun on skin, the dear bonds of friendship, the refuge of a mother’s love.
Well-crowned Persephone, bride of noble Hades, queen of the afterworld, clothed in fine silks, adorned with jewels, enthroned in glory, friend to those who have passed from this world into yours, advocate of the dead and the wronged.
Kindly Persephone, womanly one, of transformation do you know much, of the ways of the earth do you know much; of the life after life do you know much.
Gracious goddess, friend of mortals, I praise you and thank you for your gifts.
15) Do a hymn to Persephone
Persephone, Daughter of Zeus, blessed
Only begotten, gracious Goddess, receive this good offering,
Much honoured, you, overpowered by Pluto, you are beloved and lifegiving,
You hold the doors of Hades under the depths of the earth;
Transactor of Justice, your beloved hair the sacred olive branch of the enemy
Mother of the Eumenides, Queen of the Underworld, You, maiden from Zeus through secret begetting.
Mother of loud-shouting, many-shaped Bacchus.
Playmate of the moving seasons, lightbringing, of beautiful form,
Holy, ruler of all, maiden, showering fruits,
Radiant, horned, you alone are longed for by mortals.
You are Spring, delighting in fragrant meadows
Your sacred body appears to us in growing fruits and branches.
Raped into your marriage bed in the late autumn
You alone are life and death to distressed mortals.
Persephone. You are forever the nourisher and the death bringer.
Listen, blessed Goddess and send up fruits from the earth
In peace, flourishing in health from your soothing hand;
And, in life abundance, leading to richness of old age
Then to your realm O Sovereign, and to powerful Pluto.
16) Let Hecate know that your here, saying, “Hecate, hear me.” And then tell her why your here, which is to honor the dead.
17) Do an invocation to Hecate.
I call to Hekate, who stands at the crossroad, who stands at the city gate, who stands before each family’s home, to watch and to ward off evil. Bearer of torches, leader of hounds, holder of keys, daughter of the deep earth and the starry sky, you tread upon the path less traveled; you walk, with certainty and without fear, in the dark night, in the wilderness, along roads most treacherous, among those who skirt the edges of order. Hekate, friend of women, protector of children, you know the perils of all the worlds, goddess, as each world is your realm to wander. Thus do you hold safe the home, thus do you bar the door from all ill, thus do you drive away the baneful and the false. Hekate, compassionate goddess, I call to you.
18) To a Prayer to Hecate.
World-wandering Hekate, night-loving goddess, dweller in darkness, bearer of torches, between the realms you pass with ease, made welcome in each, made mighty in each.
Whenever we move from one place, one time, one state of being to another, you are there to comfort us.
Whenever we enter or leave this life, you are there to carry us.
Whenever we are in fear or in need, goddess, you are there to sustain us.
Thrice-blessed Hekate, friend of frail and fragile mortals, I honor you.
19) To a Hymn to Hecate.
Hecate of the wayside ,who frequents crossroads, Lovely dame, of earthly, watery and celestial frame, around tombs, in a saffron veil arrayed, pleased with dark ghosts that wander through the shade; destroyer, solitary goddess, hail! The world’s key bearer, never doomed to fail; In stags rejoicing, huntress, nightly seen, and drawn by bulls, unconquerable queen; leader, nymphe, nurse on mountains wandering, hear the suppliants who with holy rites thy power revere, and to the herdsman with a favouring mind draw near…
20) Offering Incense, saying, “I offer this incense, as I’ve done before, in names of the gods and in the name of the dead (say their names). May Hermes, Hecate, Hades, and Persephone accept this offering and may the dead that have passed on accept this offering.”
21) Give Food Offering, saying, “I offer this food as a sacrifice, to you gods Hermes, Hecate, Hades, and Persephone. And to the dead that have passed. May all enjoy what I have offered.”
22) Pour libations to the gods and to the dead. Remember: Hestia gets first and last libations.
23) Pray to gods, if you want.
24) End the ritual by saying, “Hestia, goddess of home and hearth, to you I offer last of all as a pious mortal should. Tend to those whom I love and guard the houses of the pious. As the gods will it, so it shall be.”
It is so!
Dump the entire container that you’ve poured your wine or grape juice into outside and then that ends it.