🍂 Samhain / Halloween 🍂
Le meilleur moment de l’année est arrivé ! Les jours qui entourent ce sabbat iconique irradient d’une atmosphère particulière.
L’occasion de revenir un peu sur la symbolique de cette fête, pour mieux s’y préparer…
La nuit du 31 octobre, les sorcières célèbrent le sabbat de Samhain - une fête dont le nom est bien souvent écorché ! (Les puristes honoreront les racines gaéliques du mot en prononçant “Soween” et non pas “Samain”) Ou simplement sa version plus profane, Halloween.
Bien que l'on doit l'aspect commercial de cette fête aux Etats Unis, l'origine de cette tradition païenne et ses coutumes (se déguiser en quelque chose d'effrayant, faire du porte à porte en quête de sucreries, creuser et décorer des citrouilles…) sont bel et bien d’origine européenne - d'Irlande plus précisément.
Cette date cristallise en elle les valeurs de l’automne : c’est la saison du repli sur soi, à l’image de la nature qui dépérit petit à petit pour se mettre en repos le temps de l’hiver. C’est la fin d'un cycle et le début d'un nouveau, et elle faisait même office de nouvel an pour les celtes. Derrière l’apparence extérieure de mort, c’est tout un champ de possibles qui attend de renaître. Et c’est cette phase de transition mortuaire de la nature qui nous rapproche aussi de nos morts à nous : le voile entre le monde des vivants et des défunts est réputé le plus fin cette nuit là. C’est d’ailleurs pour ça à la base qu’il est de coutume d’afficher citrouilles grimaçantes et costumes terrifiants, pour effrayer et repousser les esprits indésirables et damnés qui voudraient s’inviter auprès des vivants.
- 🥧 Pour le repas de fête (quand je me sens d’en faire un haha), je privilégie les courges de toute sorte, champignons, oléagineux et fruits d’automne. ET. DU. CIDRE. La tradition veut que l’on dresse une assiette en plus le soir de Samhain pour inviter ses proches défunts à festoyer aussi avec nous.
- 🎃 Creuser et sculpter une citrouille ou une courge, mon activité de Samhain préférée ! Pourquoi ne pas y ajouter un twist en y gravant des motifs originaux, un symbole magique personnel, ou en dessinant des runes ou sigils avec des clous de girofle plantés dedans ?
- 🕯 Décorer son autel : aux couleurs de l’automne, avec des éléments naturels (coloquintes, guirlande de feuilles mortes, glands, bâtons de cannelle, etc), quelques décos kistch d’halloween, exposer des figures de crânes ou des petits ossements pour honorer la mort… ou tout ça à la fois !
- 🔮 En magie : c’est la période la plus propice au spiritisme et à la divination, et pour honorer ses ancêtres. L’étude de l’ombre (shadow work) est aussi favorisée. Pour l’occasion, je fais en général juste un gros tirage de cartes, mais l’envie de tester de nouvelles méthodes de divination me parle en ce moment. ^^ Et bien sûr, c’est l’occasion de resortir la planche ouija…
Et vous, qu’avez-vous prévu de beau pour Halloween/Samhain ? Plutôt ambiance cozy/pépouze ou grosses festivités ? 👻
SAMHAIN FILMS chez nous:-
* Mon - Tomb of Lygeia
* Tues - Crimson Peak
* Weds - Curse of the Crimson Altar
* Thurs-the House that Dripped Blood
* Fri - Bram Stoker’s Dracula (FF Coppola)
* SAT H’een - Sleepy Hollow
* Sun - Phantom of the Opera
* Next Mon - Ed Wood
If you sense a theme.. you may be correct!
Full Blue Moon on Halloween [Samhain]
This Saturday is not only Halloween but also a Blue Moon! The Blue Moon - especially on Halloween - is a rare occurance and said to make the impossible possible. (Last Blue Moon on Halloween was sighted 1944) If you have plans that are supposed to change your life, approach them on Saturday! May the Blue Moon strengthen your purpose. To entertain you with one of my favorite songs that is quite fitting regarding this topic, I decided to link it below. ^.-
Got my candles ready for samhain
In the garden diary autumn is the time of year for; harvesting; for cutting back perennials; for sewing hardy winter and spring seeds and bulbs; and for mulching i.e. preparing the ground for the following year by laying sheets of this years old growth to decay and add to soil fertility. There’s a real sense, as we set out the pumpkins to cure and plant the seeds from this year’s pea and bean harvests, of one cycle coming to an end as another begins. In the Celtic calendar Samhain (the Autumn Equinox) was celebrated as the new year. This resounds to me as I chop up the leaves of a fallen oak tree and this years’ bean plants for mulching… Also as I sort through the autumn harvests - drying, pickling, cooking, freezing and jam making - preparing food for the winter months and storing seeds for the following spring: one phase winding up, another beginning, entering a time of dark and secret inner development before the new growth of spring…
I find this time a useful, encompassing metaphor for another kind of shift. This one is something more emotional, psychological - Of letting go of what no longer serves us that we can prepare for the next phase. It’s a strange kind of coincidence that this realisation also happens to be concurrent with the anniversary of one of the single most traumatic experiences of my life. I’m not going to talk to that but I am going to talk to the turning of the wheel of the year.
Last week I had an encounter with someone a little older and much wiser than myself. Though we didn’t know about one another’s histories (we have only had the most fleeting of exchanges before then) we somehow got onto talking about family violence and parental neglect. My friend told me about how her father was an alcoholic, how he had tyrannised her mother, and how my friend as a teenager had become increasingly angry with her mother for not defending herself and her family. It was all so very, very familiar. My friend told me about how she hadn’t cried after her father died. But then she told me about the shift… It was several years after her father had drunk himself to death when my friend went on a silent retreat. She described the intensity of 10 days of silence in the company of strangers. She described how time slowed down as she and the other women around her had to observe and navigate one another, allowing space and time because there were no expressions for intention, want or thought. She described how everyone looked so unhappy. But then something happened on the 9th day of silence - my friends’ tears came.
As my friend described what happened her body language seemed to shift- she softened, she opened up, her voice lost the quiver I had heard as she talked about her childhood. My friend told me how a fond memory of her father, a gentle act of creative kindness, had appeared spontaneously one evening as she sat alone in her bedroom. This memory then became a fissure through which my friends’ grief then poured: the grief for a father she could have had; for a person more complicated and nuanced than the singular monster; for the death of someone she might have known and loved more. My friend told me how - in order to preserve and protect her anger and the iniquities she had suffered - she had only been able to focus on the negative memories and feelings but that once she started to turn her attention and energy towards the positives (however few they may be) that she unlocked her grief. And with that she started to forgive her father and, in doing so, to heal the wounds of the past and present.
When we have been damaged by someone or something, particularly when it is a repeated, long term damage, our amygdala forms a pattern of reactivity. This is helpful when we are amidst the violence being committed to our bodies and beings - it’s what means we can fight, flee or freeze to protect ourselves in that instant. The problem is that, when that danger has passed but we are triggered by another situation, we go back into that place of life-preserving fight, flight or freeze (sometimes a combination of those). This often manifests longer term as Complex Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (CPTSD), a condition which is often overlooked or even misdiagnosed for one of the many other symptomatic behaviours/conditions which can be a part of this (depression, anxiety, personality disorders, various physical health problems, for example). What my friend was describing was the beginning of the examining and unlocking her own CPTSD. This isn’t easy. And it’s not something that, once you recognise is a thing, you then get on “the path to recovery”, forgive your abusers and walk into the sunset a happier, healthier, more productive and well rounded human being. It is a fucking epic journey (one which may never be resolved). And it is, quite simply, not possible for everyone. But what my friend was telling me - as she talked about how she now ends her daily meditation practice with a fond memory of her father - was that we can change our narrative and, in doing so, change ourselves. That change isn’t denying the harms which were done, it isn’t destroying or denying our past selves, but it is harvesting the old and dead (that which no longer serves us) in order to make mulch for new growth…
I am making a commitment, this Samhain, to let go of what no longer serves me. Because, though it has protected me in the past, here and now it only serves to stoke my rage, my anxiety, and my sense of victimhood. I know I will never forget the awful things done to me, my family and friends, but perhaps, with time and a lot of patience, I can start to forgive*, to heal, and to make my relationships of the present and future that much less volatile (that much less conditioned by the ghosts of the past).
Ha! It’s easier said than done, I am sure! I’ve even had to prefix forgiveness! But I am daring to give it a try… Small steps… With compassion for when I fail…
* at least the harm done to me. I doubt I will, or have the willingness, to ever forgive what was done to those closest to me.
It’s almost Samhain!
I absolutely love Samhain and Halloween; The food, the decorations, the activities - all of it! And for once, it fall in a weekend which means I’ll actually have time to celebrate properly 🎃
So witches of Tumblr, I’d love to hear some of the things you do to celebrate samhain, whether it’s activities you do, movies you watch to get into a spooky mood, recipes, or something else entirely!
Please leave a comment (or reblog) with ideas 🧙♀️
This time of year the spirit realm is close to our physical realm. That means the ghosts, spirits and all things paranormal are around. This is a time when the boundaries are thinnest, so precautions must be extra strong. Before you head out or back home, perform a chant to prevent any unwanted spirits or ghouls from following you.
The chant is simple. You must repeat it five times while concentrating on each part.
I will banish hence forth all dark spirits, ghosts and ghouls. They have no place around me.
The greater your focus, power, and intent, the more likely nothing will follow you.
no dark circles
under my eyes
can axis point
my worries & woes
nor heal all of
my whimpers & sighs
but in the
where i can
sing in the trees
& dance under the stars
i can be
no, i can feel
forever & always
All Hallows Eve ~ October 31- November 1
“The Dark Mother and Dark Father preside over the Otherworld. She nurtures and protects the fecund Earth as it prepares for its period of rest and regeneration; for only out of this long dark sleep will the light be reborn.”
Samhain (pron. SAO·WEN) is a Gaelic word for “Summers End.” It is generally celebrated on October 31 but the date can also fall upon November 1. This Sabbat is the third and final Harvest after which the dark half of the year takes power over the land and the Veil between the words is lifted.
Originally known as the ‘Feast of the Dead’ this Sabbat was celebrated in Celtic countries by leaving food offerings for the ‘wandering dead.’ Single candles were lit in windows to help guide the spirits of ancestors and loved ones home. Extra chairs or plates were set on the table for unseen guests. Apples were buried along roadsides and paths for spirits who were lost and had no descendants to provide for them.
Any crops still in the field on Samhain were considered taboo and were left as offerings to the Nature spirits or Faerie. Hearth fires were lit from the village bonfire to ensure unity and the ashes were spread over the harvested fields to protect and bless the land.
For Samhain, take this time to communicate with ancestor spirits or loved ones who have made the journey to the Summerlands. Honor those who have come before by making an ancestor shrine or altar. ❤️
If you’re like me, and the coming Samhain celebration is stressing you out because you have no deceased ancestors that you know (or ancestors you don’t feel like contacting), don’t worry friend! You aren’t alone in this feeling at all. Sometimes we don’t know our families, don’t wish to contact them, or just genuinely have no interest in contacting those who have passed, and all of the above are totally valid reasons for not wanting to celebrate in the traditional neo-pagan way this year! Instead here’s some ways to celebrate, focusing more on the self instead of familial bonds:
- Celebrate the past “you”‘s that you have grow from
- Bury the old versions of yourself that you wish to leave behind
- Dig a grave for your past grievances. This is a perfect time to let the older parts of you die off from the witch you are becoming.
- Spend some time in self reflection, taking notes on the parts of you that you feel are holding you back from growth
- Spend time with yourself figuring out what this time of death and rebirth means for you
I hope this helps any witch out there struggling this time of year, especially those of us with no idea of our ancestors and who they were, I see you and I’m with you <3
Cotton Tails & Candle Spells
Running rabbit whispers to the wind
Tail fuzz a flurry as the seconds tick by
Dark eyes watch from the trees
Black pits of tar
Running rabbit cries to the moon
Hot wax melts
Gone too soon– is the weeping rabbits cotton tail
Left behind is a broken jar
And a candle’s spell
- “Cotton Tails & Candle Spells.” by Eli (06.15.2018)