Happy Samhain, everyone! Blessed be, and may you and your ancestors be reunited tonight in feasting and festivities. Now is the night where Woden takes over and leads us through the coming Winter. In times of old, this was the day when the cattle were culled and the harvest was stored to get our ancestors through the cold months ahead.
Tonight, we honor the harvest, the cull, and our ancestors. It is, in short, a day of honoring death. More importantly, it is about remembering that death is another step in our ever-turning cycle. As we remember those we’ve lost, we know they have continued their journey and prepare to start another cycle of life and rejoice in the new experiences and joys they’ll discover.
There are many ways we can celebrate Samhain, and what I present here is simply what I plan to do with my family this year.
What you’ll need:
A spot in the woods, your yard, a riverside, a garden, or anywhere you can see and feel Nature in it’s autumn glory.
Something to collect fallen leaves, plants, rocks, and whatever you would like to create a mask.
Scissors, glue, tape, and whatever other crafting materials you’d like.
Pencils, Pens, Markers.
What to do:
You and each friend and family member will choose a tree, bush, animal, river, or anything in the area. Then each of you sit before the entity and meditate for awhile. I’ll skip over the specifics of meditation, but your goal here is to establish a connection with the spirit of the land, or the ‘Wight’. Imagine what the face of the wight will look like; if a specific face comes to you, great! If not, you can let the inspiration come later.
Collect the materials from the area and take them home. Each of you will take a piece of paper and glue/tape your materials to it to create the face of the spirit you connected with in Nature. Think ‘Green Man’ type of visage. Feel free to print out a blank-face picture or even use a mask or mannequin head, and augment your collected materials with pencil drawings or other materials you have lying around.
For a ritual to honor the Lord and Lady, check out our Solitary Samhain Rite. If you have your own tradition or ritual for Samhain, please let us know about it in the comments!
Lord and Lady, guard us and guide us in our new year, and grant rest to those we’ve lost this year as they prepare to continue their journey into their next life. Blessed be!
Samhain / Halloween is my favorite time of year! For years, we’ve been having chili and cornbread as a family on Halloween night, and we watch Bela Lugosi’s ‘Dracula’. This was well before I started looking at it through more of a spiritual lens. We still do those things, including my daughter and I walking the neighborhood among the trick-or-treaters and decorated houses to get into the fun spirit of the season. Over the past couple years, however, I make sure to also buy a a box of Hot Tamales candy in honor of my father (it was his favorite for movie time), and sit it out with a special scented candle I collected that makes me think of him when it’s lit. He used to spend Halloween night with my children when they were little. So we light the candle and have dinner and watch Dracula, knowing he is there with us in spirit.
I look forward to my daughter and I doing our first full Samhain ritual this year with the help of The Tree!
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I love Samhain! It’s one of the more festive Sabbats, and I love the strong feel of ancestral connections.