Gratitude is a very important part of being balanced and in harmony with the environment. What are you grateful for? When I look at myself so happy and relaxed in my tiny house in the wood, well, I can say that I fell overwhelmed with happiness and joy. The autumn months on the Wheel of the Year represent a season of death, which is really about transition and change. During this time, many around the world believe that the Veil Between Worlds thins, becoming more permeable. In the middle of the woods I can hear fairies, witches and magical creatures playing, while the thinned veil most importantly provides the opportunity to honour those who have come before us. I craved a stronger inter-generational connection, and Samhain showed me that our ancestors do not need to be here with us physically for this to happen.
The festivities and philosophies behind Samhain are deeply rooted in Nature. While you walk in a natural area, observe and contemplate what you see, hear, smell, and touch. Experience yourself as part of the Circle of Life and reflect on birth and death as beautiful cycles of Nature. To honour those who have passed on, you might like to place pictures and heirlooms on a flat surface where you can light candles around them. You might also like to cook a feast with your family, leaving a chair empty and placing a plate of food on the table in front of it as a symbolic offering to your deceased loved ones and ancestors. r you may just sit down silent and in piece, while you think about these people and how they affected your life. As soon as if you remember them, they will continue to live, perhaps in the other world. This is a reminder to pause and reflect, and find your own special way(s) to honour all those – known and unknown – that may still walk with us on the other side of the veil…now closer than ever.
Samhain is also a wonderful time to make a sacred altar in your home. You can dedicate this altar to the harvest season, loved ones who have passed before you, or anything else that you’re called to focus on. To make an altar, first find a corner of your home or a table surface where you can arrange a few treasures. You don’t need a ton of space. You could use the top of a dresser, the corner of your desk, an unused side table, etc. Next, adorn that space with items that remind you of Samhain and the harvest season. A few items that you may want to include could be:
- Beautiful autumn leaves or flowers that you collect on a nature walk
- A candle
- A mugwort bundle
- A string of rowan beads
- A bowl of apples or a small pumpkin
- A hawthorn wand or bowl of freshly picked hawthorn berries
After you’ve assembled your altar, spend some time sitting quietly in the space. Light the candle and/or mugwort wand, sip on a cup of Apple & Hawthorn Berry Tea (recipe above) and meditate on this energetically powerful day. Samhain is a sacred and beautiful time to slow down, listen to the wind, sit under a hawthorn tree, and open your mind to any magic that may filter through the thinning veil. I hope you all enjoy this enchanting holiday!
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