Samhain, by Sabrina the Ink Witch
“Halloween. It’s just an American thing, isn’t it?”
Samhain (pronounced Sow-en/Sow-een/Sow-ain) is an important Celtic fire festival that started right here in Britain. It marks the end of summer and the start of the Celtic New Year.
And we all know how wonderful New Years are, right? We get to start again! And that’s exactly what’s happening all around us, as Mother Nature starts slowing down and makes Her preparations for winter.
The word Samhain means ‘first frost’ and it’s a time when our ancestors brought in the final harvest of the year. Now is when you would be taking stock of supplies, filling larders, and ensuring there was plenty put aside to see you through the leaner months.
At this time of year, the Northern side of our planet goes into hibernation. Trees are shedding their leaves to protect against the harsh weather to come and life looks like it’s ending. But there in the dark, under the soil, roots and seeds are resting, seeing out the cold weather, and renewing their energy waiting to spring into life in a few months’ time.
Nature reminds us that death is very much a part of life and as we move further into the dark half of the year, it gives us hope that longer days and warmer months will soon return.
As a Festival of the Dead, Samhain is a time to remember and honour those who have passed and to learn from the spirit world. Special places are set aside for departed loved ones, and carved pumpkins and candles are placed in the window to guide and welcome home their spirits.
Traditionally, Halloween/Hallowe’en or All Hallows’ Eve is a magical time when the veil between the living and the dead is at its thinnest. This makes is a good time for scrying and for communicating with the spirit world. It’s a favourable time for psychic and divination work, for seeking guidance on new directions and for reviewing your goals.
It’s also a brilliant time to help you break any bad habits, so I have a little spell for you that might help, which you are welcome to use, frame, or print for your own Book of Shadows. If you would like a larger version, drop me a comment below and I’ll get that to you.
Don’t worry if you don’t have a cauldron, Goddess won’t be upset if you use an ashtray (so long as it’s clean!)
I have a few habits of my own I’d be happy to see the back of, so this is one spell I’ll be working next week!
I truly hope you have a blessed Samhain.