Blessed Samhain 2012
This is a week late but I wanted to wait until I had enough time to sit down and write about it. Like they say, “Better late than never”. Please bear with me because I know I am probably going to butcher this article. I am still rusty on my ways of explaining things through typing.
Last week was Halloween for many but to Pagans, Wiccans and witches, we know is as Samhain (pronounced as Sow-een but it varies from tradition to tradition, person to person, etc.). This day hass roots that dates back thousands of years before Christianity came about. Many people of the Celtic, Welsh and Druid traditions celebrated this ages and ages ago! I am not sure if other ancient people outside those I just mentioned did. I need to really brush up on my studying. Samhain is considered the holiest of the Sabbats for many reasons. This is the sabbat where we honour our ancestors and lost loved ones (quite similar to the Mexican Dia de los Muertos). We see the veils between our world and the world of those who passed the thinnest on this sacred night. Many forms of divination are used to contact with those who passed such as Tarot cards (I suck at the cards lol), pendulums (I seem to be quite the natural at it), scrying mirrors, tea leaves, etc.
This is also the Witches’ New Year on the Wheel of the Year. This is a good time to start looking on your recent past and learn from it to help you better advance with your new year. Since the veils are thinnest on our New Year, we use the divination methods I just spoke of to ask the spirits what to expect of our new year. This is when our last harvest ends and we shift over into our slower period of rest from the works of planting and harvest. Many also hold what they call a “Dumb Supper” on Samhain. After all your Samhain traditions and rituals, we would normally have a huge feast to celebrate the final harvest and honour the ancestors. We would set up the dining area normally BUT also set up plates and stuff for those ancestors and offer them some food from the harvests we collected.
What do we place on our altar areas around this time? Since it’s a time to honour those who passed, you may place photos of those loved ones, photo albums to recognize those loved ones who are still with us…honour your friends and family, no matter if they are here and gone. Many have different items on their altars to represent the Sabbat itself. Anything related to the autumn season (pine cones, fallen leaves from the trees, rocks/stones, etc.), any foods collected from the harvest (pumpkins, squash, corns, etc.). Anything that personally represents you on Samhain is appropriate…but in the end, each altar is unique. You can place what feels most appropriate and comfortable for you.
For more photos of my Samhain, please check them out: Samhain 2012. I end this post with a silent, reflective video of my altar post-ritual.