Samhain

Third/Last Harvest, Blood Harvest, Halloween, Old Hallowmas, All Hallows Eve, All Saint’s Eve, Witch’s New Year, Feast/Day of the Dead, Ancestor Night, Feast of Spirits, Feast of Apples, Festival of Pomona, Samonios, Samana, Shadowfest (Strega), Nos Galan/Calan Gaeaf (Welsh), Vetrablot/Winternight (Norse)

October 31

Cross-quarter Fire Festival, Greater Sabbat

Samhain (SOW-in), also known as the Witch’s New Year, is one of the most important Wiccan sabbats.  It marks the end of the harvest and the beginning of winter.  It is thought that the veil between the worlds is thinnest at this time, therefore Samhain is a good opportunity to honour our ancestors and celebrate the cycle of death and rebirth.

Families would light candles in their windows and set a place at their tables for deceased ancestors as it was thought that they would return at Samhain.  However some spirits were not welcome, leading to people to try to hide their identity by wearing masks and costumes.

It is a time to honour goddesses of the Underworld, including Hecate, Hel, the Morrigan, Cerridwen, and Persephone.  Symbols of Samhain include carved pumpkins and gourds, pomegranates, apples, food offerings, faeries, balefires, masks, besoms, cauldrons, divination, and the waning moon.

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© A Year And A Day (2013)

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Mabon / Autumn Equinox

Herfest, Halig, Second Harvest, Harvest Home, Fruit Harvest, Wine Harvest, Festival of Dionysus, Cornucopia, Feast of Avalon, Michaelmas, Meán Fómhair, Gŵyl Ganol yr Hydref (Welsh), Alban Elfed (Druid, ‘Light of the Water’), Haustblot/Harvestfest (Norse)

September 22, 2013 (Northern Hemisphere)
Quarter Festival, Lesser Sabbat

Mabon is the autumn equinox, a time when light and dark are once again equal.  The nights continue to grow longer and the earth’s bounty diminishes.  It is the second harvest, where much of the remaining crops are being collected and stored before the long winter.  Mabon is a time of thanksgiving, where we stop to recognize all of our personal harvests and are grateful for what we have been blessed with.

Mabon marks the time when the Greek Goddess Persephone starts her descent into the underworld, and the mourning Demeter withholds life from the once bountiful earth.  Symbols of Mabon include apples, grapes, wine, gourds, pine cones, acorns, wheat, dried leaves, corn, sun wheels, and pomegranates.

© A Year And A Day (2013)

Samhain / Halloween

Third/Last Harvest, Blood Harvest, Halloween, Old Hallowmas, All Hallows Eve, All Saint’s Eve, Witch’s New Year, Feast/Day of the Dead, Ancestor Night, Feast of Spirits, Feast of Apples, Festival of Pomona, Samonios, Samana, Shadowfest (Strega), Nos Galan/Calan Gaeaf (Welsh), Vetrablot/Winternight (Norse)

October 31

Samhain (SAH-wen) represents the end of the harvest when the ‘summer goes to rest’. It is a cross-quarter festival, celebrated approximately halfway between the autumn equinox (Mabon) and the winter solstice (Yule). It is a time to honor our ancestors and embrace the darker half of the year.

Samhain - Anthony Meadows - Llewellyn

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October – Blood Moon

Pagan: Blood Moon, Hunters’ Moon, Shedding Moon, Falling Leaf Moon
Native American / Farmers’ Almanac:  Harvest Moon, Sanguine Moon

In the Pacific Northwest, October’s Full Moon arrives on October 29 at 11:50 am.

Nature Spirits: frost faeries, plant faeries
Herbs: pennyroyal, thyme, catnip, uva ursi, angelica, burdock
Colors: dark blue-green
Flowers: calendula, marigold, cosmos
Scents: strawberry, apple blossom, cherry
Stones: opal, tourmaline, beryl, turquoise
Trees: yew, cypress, acacia
Animals: stag, jackal, elephant, ram, scorpion
Birds: heron, crow, robin
Deities: Ishtar, Astarte, Demeter, Kore, Lakshmi, Horned God, Hathor, Hella

Energy: To let go, inner cleansing, karma and reincarnation, justice and balance, inner harmony. This is a good time to align yourself with nature and conducting magickal rituals concerning animal issues.

  • The hunting season begins in October, thus the name Hunters’ Moon or Blood Moon. The leaves are falling from trees, the deer are fattened, and it’s time to begin storing up meat for the long winter ahead.
  • Probably because of the threat of winter looming close, the Hunters’ Moon is generally accorded with special honour, historically serving as an important feast day in both Western Europe and among many Native American tribes.
  • The full moon that occurs closest to the Autumn Equinox is called the Harvest Moon.  Most years, the Harvest Moon comes in September, however in some years it occurs in October.

Pagan’s Path
Angel Fire
Willow Grove Magick
Wicca.com
Farmers’ Almanac

© A Year And A Day (2012)

Autumn Poem

Crunchy leaves, a cool crisp breeze.
Oh what wonderful days are these!

Trees with apples, green and red.
Gather food, winter’s ahead!

Autumn orkut scraps, images, greetings

Orange pumpkins, full and round.
The beauty of the earth abound!

Changing leaves, red and gold.
Shorter days are turning cold.

The veil between the worlds is thin,
Time for us to look within.

Mabon past, Samhain will come.
The ripeness of the summer done.

The wheel is turning, circling round,
The wonder of nature does astound!

Happy Autumn!

© A Year And A Day (2012)

September – Harvest Moon

Pagan: Harvest Moon, Barley Moon, Wine Moon, Singing Moon
Native American/ Farmers’ Almanac:  Corn Moon, Fruit Moon

In the Pacific Northwest, September’s Full Moon arrives on September 29 at 7:19 pm.

Nature Spirits: faeries
Herbs: copal, fennel, rye, wheat, valerian, skullcap
Colors: brown, yellow-green, yellow
Flowers: narcissus, lily
Scents: storax, mastic, gardenia, bergamot
Stones: peridot, olivine, chrysolite, citrine
Trees: hazel, larch, bay
Animals: snake, jackal
Birds: ibis, sparrow
Deities: Demeter, Ceres, Isis, Nephthys, Freya, Thoth, Modron

Energy: Rest after labor, a balance of light and dark.  Organize, clean and straighten up physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual clutter. A good time for rituals for healing old wounds, emotional and physical, forgiving transgressors and yourself.

  • The full moon that occurs closest to the Autumn Equinox is called the Harvest Moon.  Most years, the Harvest Moon comes in September, however in some years it occurs in October.
  • Sometimes called the Fruit Moon if a full moon occurs during the first week of September, to keep the Harvest Moon from coming too early in the calendar.
  • Also referred to as the Corn Moon because it marked the time when corn is harvested. The main Indian staples of corn, pumpkins, squash, beans, and wild rice are now ready for gathering.

Pagan’s Path
Angel Fire
Willow Grove Magick
Wicca.com
Farmers’ Almanac

© A Year And A Day (2012)

Mabon / Autumn Equinox

Herfest, Halig, Second Harvest, Harvest Home, Fruit Harvest, Wine Harvest, Festival of Dionysus, Cornucopia, Feast of Avalon, Michaelmas, Meán Fómhair, Gŵyl Ganol yr Hydref (Welsh), Alban Elfed (Druid, ‘Light of the Water’), Haustblot/Harvestfest (Norse)

~ September 20-23

Mabon is the celebration of the autumn equinox, when the hours of day and night are of equal length. From now on, the sun’s strength diminishes until the winter solstice in December.

Mabon2 - Anthony Meadows - Llewellyn

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