Sunday, October 30, 2016

Wheel of Wonder Samhain 2016

Ah yess.....hello again friends!  My naturalist work, as you'll see listed in my profile, has kept me out and about, often in the wilderness, and away from the computer for any reason besides interpretive research and development.  Now as we head into the dark time of the year, I look forward to adding to and updating this venue as the wheel of the seasons turns.  Most people understand Samhain is the name of the original Celtic holiday modern Halloween is descended from.  The costumes are similar to the mumming and guising traditions of people dressing as the sidhe, the spirits of the dead and often other faerie folks both seelie and unseelie (nice and not nice) in order to collect tributes and offerings in order to receive blessings or protections from the spirits of the fay.  Further, food was often collected so you could invite the spirits of your ancestors to a Samhain feast if they were lost or suffering and to pay tribute to them for all the good things they brought to your family during their years of living.
Mummers would sing songs, tell stories. show parlor tricks, or share prose as they traveled door to door to collect the tributes.  Wouldn't it be nice to have "Trick or Treaters" come to your door on Halloween night and share something with you besides a "Trick or Treat?"  I certainly don't feel deeply moved to give offerings for my protection or to honor fictitious superheroes or disney characters!  Chances are if you have kids familiar with consumer culture you've already made offerings of money to the creators of these fictions.

Samhain is believed to be one of those times of the year when the veil, the separation between this world and the world of the spirits is thinner than is normal and a fine night for divining the future and connecting with the spirits of one's ancestry and of the past.  This Samhain it is a night of the new moon, if one does new moon rituals, it may be easier to ask for help in achieving something through ceremony and magic!  But don't get lost in the underworld or faerieland.  Shamans and Druids may see Samhain as a night were it is easy to travel between this world and the otherworld, all or at least most should be sure to ground and center before attempting contact with the spirit world.  It is a thrilling night for people who hold these belief systems close to their heart and spirit. Some will say it is the best night to confront your shadowself , hear its beliefs and understand it and how it can help you through your challenges in life, leaving you free through the coming new year to benefit from the wisdom of darkness, without allowing your darker side to overtake or overrule your better nature.
May your beliefs lead you to wisdom and may your truth burn its way through the fog of confusion, continuing to light the along your journey.  Blessed be.

First picture from elfwood. Second picture Samhain by midnightstouch both from DeviantArt