Autumn is such a poignant time of year. It marks the end of the summer and the beginning of the holdiays, starting with Halloween and ending with New Years Eve. But what many of you may not know, is that for some, New Years comes on October 31st. All Hallows Eve. Or in the Wiccan Tradition...Samhain. Most people, (including the popular ebook publisher that shares its name with the holiday), pronounce it 'SAM- HAYNE'. But the correct pronunciation is 'SOW-EN', and it is the Witch's New Year.
It is one of the major fire sabbats on the wheel of the year for pagans everywhere, and represents the time of year when the veil between the worlds is at its thinnest. The time when we can best communicate with the spirit world. Samhain is a time of transition, as the earth prepares for winter’s rest and we prepare for our journey through the dark of the year. Samhain is a time to reflect and remember loved ones who no longer walk this earth. To honor our ancestors and our past. It is a time to gather around the hearth fires and dream of spring and new beginnings. Just as Persephone descended to the Underworld to guide the spirits of the departed, so we descend into ourselves to find the path our spirits need to follow. Pomegranate seeds, candles and sprigs of bittersweet are just some of the elements used in rituals honoring this time. The year has waxed with the fullness of life and now wanes into shadow. Our souls take rest in the dark as the seasons make their final turn into the fallow and prepare for the return of the sun.
So as Halloween approaches, while we watch our scary movies and dress up as whatever it is we want to be, give a thought to the loved ones we've lost, say a prayer and whisper their names to the wind. Trust me...they'll hear you.
A Blessed Samhain to you all, and a Happy Halloween!