Sam Hill – it’s nearly Samhain!
The original Celtic New Year begins on the night of the Full Moon closest to October 31st and November 1st. This year that will be Monday 2nd November. It is the time when the Summer was overcome by the Winter – often played out as the Solar Hero being overcome by a Dark Knight (see Mummer Plays).
This time sees the beginning of the Dark Half of the Year – a festival honouring the dead, and importantly forming a link between the energies of those who have been before us, and those of us here now. Samhain is a gateway between the worlds of the Otherworld and the Middle Earth, and becomes passable by the denizens of either world – the “veil becomes thin” as some describe it. It is therefore an opportunity to commune or communicate with forces in a much stronger and clearer way that at other times.
There is lots of miscellaneous information about various customs relating to this time of year, old and new, to be found here.
Playing with Fire
Samhain is a Celtic fire festival, so inevitably one should look for a sacred site or grove that will enable you to have a fire without causing a disturbance, if you plan to celebrate it in style. Leave the fireworks for the sham that is “Guy Fawkes Night” though!
This being a fire festival means an opportunity to obtain the co-operation of a fire spirit if you do not already have such a relationship. This will promote change in your life and ways, so you need to know if this is what you want, or make adequate protection against inadvertant change being wrought through your life by a rampant fire spirit!
Samhain is a time of feasting on the profits of the year – whether that be literal feasting on food, or consuming the fruits of our labours and learnings over the profitable summer months. It is a time to gather in the rewards of your experiences, reflect upon them, and begin the process of working them into your life over the Winter months to come, ready for the next Spring.
Energetically we see the male earth energies, and those living energies produced by the trees, begin to retreat back into the earth, their influence waning. The celebration of the rising female energy influence is encapsulated in the celebration’s coincidence with the full moon.
You’re My Venus
Astrologically, Venus is appearing in the mornings. Jupiter and Mars are also in attendance over Samhain. Other major planets such as Mercury and Saturn have significantly disappeared from the northern hemisphere just before Samhain.
I’m looking forward to visiting a sacred site that is out of the way, and which is associated with Venus and the sacred number five. Last year none of that would have made any sense – this year I have learned that such specifics will mean that I am at a site that is energetically at its peak, and full of magical possibilities for me.
Enjoy your Samhain celebrations, whatever you do!