May your dance be one of joy with your ancestors and friends who have crossed the veil. Please kind in mind when honoring ancestors they do not necessarily have to be related by blood or family ties, an ancestor can be anyone who at some point in your life made a difference in it.
An example of a none blood/family ancestor – About a year and a half after my father crossed into the Summerlands I started taking oil painting lessons I was about 13 years old. My teacher was in her Crone years but her love and patience she embraced me with, plus her time spent teaching me, along with others in my class, instilled in me the real beauty of creating something going from my imagination out on to a canvas that I could see. Her warmth and love of art made a big difference in my life when I needed to become a child again instead of an adult taking care of my mother because her grief was almost completely oppressing her.
Samhain is the time of year when the veils are thinnest, and consequently the spirit world and our world are closer together and communication is more readily and frequently available to us. It’s also a time of year when some of us who are already psychically sensitive to spirits and daimons find that our senses are heightened.
So how we do best take advantage of this time of year? What types of magic are best to practice during this period?
First type that readily comes to mind: divination. Divination is one of those talents which lies both in the psychic and magical realms, and while there are certain forms of divination which fall under one versus the other, either way this is a great thing to practice right now. This especially goes for those who regularly work with a particular daimon or deity when they perform divinations. Deities and daimons associated with divinations, oracles, dreams, omens, and prophecy include Apollo, Zeus, Hekate, Hermes, Pan, Brigid, the Morrigan, Horus, Thoth, and Gabriel.
There is perhaps no other holiday so closely tied to wearing costumes as Samhain or Halloween. In Mickie Mueller’s Little Book of Halloween, she traces the tradition of costume wearing and trick-or-treating and how they were introduced by Pagans and kept alive despite the Christian Church’s transformation of Samhain into All Souls’ Day in an attempt to divert the people’s attention from pagan practices of honoring the deceased ancestors. She writes that:
The rituals this evening were written by Lady Beltane and Priestess Hypatia. Lady Beltane will be leading the one for the Northern Hemisphere and Priestess Hypatia will be leading the one for the Southern Hemisphere. We ask that no matter which hemisphere you live in on Mother Earth that you attend for the entire ritual from the time the circle is cast until it is closed.
WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 31, 2018
SOCIAL HOUR IS FROM 6:00 TO 7:00 PM CT (We are still on Daylight Savings time in the USA)
The Sacred Circle will be cast at 7:00 PM CT (Again please use the link to convert to your local time.)
Please remember not to enter the chat room after the circle has been cast because that will break the protection the circle,
NORTHERN HEMISPHERE: WHAT YOU WILL NEED:
Our ritual this evening is for honoring 1 ancestor because of how long the coven’s ritual is incorporating both halves of Mother Earth. You can do this ritual alone any time of day on Samhain using 1 birthday cake size candle for each ancestor you would like to visit with or just invite into your home for a specific amount of time. Usually, the amount of time is however long the candle is burning for ancestors you want to feel or see or hear from again. For ancestors, you wish to stay around longer use a larger candle. The spell we chant during the ritual asks for a specific name if you are going to be inviting in a few or a lot of ancestors you only name to put their names in the spell the last time you chant it as you say the person’s name light a candle for them. I use a pie pan with about 3/4-inch of sand or dirt (that I have put into a ziplock type bad and crushed with either my rolling pin or a meat tenderizing mallet until it is fine like sand is. Either will hold the candle(s) upright and help even out the heat when the candles have burned down even with the sand or dirt. Make sure to put whatever you use to hold more than one or two birthday cake candles on some type of trivet or hot pan holder so the item holding the candles does not directly touch the surface wherever you have them burning.
1 Birthday Cake Candle (The straight about 2-inch long kind, color does not matter)
Heatproof container with sand or dirt in it that you can hold (You will be putting the birthday cake candle in this)
2 Black 4 inch candles or 2 4 white candles turn upside down or colored black with a magic marker
2 Candle Holders for 4 inch candles
Lighter or Matches
A Place to do the ritual where you can SAFELY set the 4-inch candles on the floor at least 4 feet apart or more so you can safely walk through them.
Something to sit on either on the floor or a chair if getting up off the floor is difficult for you
A medium to a large container of water or a fire extinguisher close enough to grab if a candle falls over (We always want everyone to keep safety in mind when using things that are burning – candle, incenses, paper, etc.)
SOUTHERN HEMISPHERE: You will need:
This is a wonderful time to help bring your dreams, aspirations and hopes to manifestation. This will be done by putting together a charm box that will be planted in the garden or wherever you feel drawn to.
· A small – medium shallow box- you choose the size. Remember the bigger the box the more you will be filling it. Try and keep it reasonable by using the Goldilocks hypotheses- not too big, and not too small, just right. Some even use shoe boxes. If you don’t have a garden you may want to make a mini wish pot to keep in your garden. The idea is the same.
· Seeds- some suggestions could be sunflower, poppy etc……
· Rose petals
· Fresh earth- soil in a container.
· NOTE: please place some rose petals and seeds aside to sprinkle on top of box before you plant it.
· Coloured markers or pens, crayons etc….. Anything that you could draw and write with.
· Your symbol that represents your wish. Please see Suggested symbols for your wish box below.
· Draw on the box whatever you feel will assist in manifesting your wish, it can include the Triple Moon Goddess, a heart, a pentacle, spirals representing the Goddess and Horns representing the God or whatever you feel drawn to. This is your WISH.
Suggested Symbols For Your Wish Box:
Love & Marriage – gingerbread
New Job – copper coin
Abundance – silver coin
Difficult Task – glove
Hearth & Home – thimble
Seeking the Truth – sprig of rosemary
Health, Healing, Renewed Strength – blue & green ribbon entwined
Happiness, Good Luck – cinnamon stickSeeking Knowledge – apple
To Find A Lost Item – feather
Protection – key (an old iron key is best if you have one)
Planting the wish Box:
· Give the earth a water the night before or wait for a couple of days if rain is due.
· Dig a hole 2 inches deep and place your Beltane Wish Box
· Carefully concentrate in your wish and visualize it coming to fruition.
· Imagine your wish growing with flowers and reaching the sky as you covert with earth.
· As you plant the box please say: “Dream that lies within the earth awaken now. Hope that sleeps awaken now. The stars await as so do I. Grow true, grow strong, toward the sky.”
LADY BELTANE: I cast this circle around Mother Earth from north to south and east to west from above us to below us to keep us safe from anyone or thing they may try to harm us while we are doing our rituals
EVERYONE: Type in So mote it be. Also, your first name and what country or state you live in (no names of cities please)
Samhain ritual to honor an ancestor (We will be allowing 5 to 6 minutes for this part of our circle this evening. Try to set up your candles and where you will be sitting ahead of us starting the ritual so you will have more time to visit with your blood ancestor)
EVERYONE: Set your two 4-inch candles safely on the floor wide enough apart so you can walk through them without knocking them over. (I suggest at least 4 feet apart or more). You will be walking north to south so place whatever you will be sitting on to the south of the 4-inch candles at least 3 feet away from them or further so they are not accidentally knocked over when you get up the seated position.
Light to 4-inch candles. Deep 3 very deep cleansing breath and letting each out slowly calming your mind and spirit Now walk through the space between the 4-inch candles imagine you are crossing through the veil between our physical plane and the spiritual plane. Bring the birthday cake candle in its holder with you. Sit down comfortably and then light the birthday candle while chanting this spell three times:
Blood to blood (NAME OF PERSON YOU WANT TO VISIT WITH) I call to thee
Blood to blood (NAME OF PERSON YOU WANT TO VISIT WITH) I honor thee
Blood to blood (NAME OF PERSON YOU WANT TO VISIT WITH) come to me
After you are through chanting the spell sit talking with or feeling your ancestor until your candle has burned out visiting with your ancestor.
When your birthday candle has burned down to the level of sand or dirt blow it out and type in: the First name of the person you were visiting with and Thank you for honoring me by coming please return to where you were. So mote it be.
Now stand up and walk back through the 4-inch candles from the spirit plane to our physical plane. Blow the candle out then say: I close this passage between the physical and spiritual planes.
IT IS NOW TIME THAT WE ALL CELEBRATE BELTANE WITH OUR BROTHERS AND SISTERS IN THE SOUTHERN HEMISPHERE.
Beginning the Beltane ritual with an observance:
PRIESTESS HYPATIA: Beltane is here and we welcome this time of fertility, joy, happiness, growth and manifestation. This is a time of Union of the Great God and Goddess. We greet this season of fire with passion and love with loving hearts and open arms. Let us come together to create life and honour this blessed union between the feminine and the masculine form which all life flows from.
As the Earth grows and creates life, so to we shall grow and create life.
EVERYONE: So mote it be!
Now the Instructions for the Wish Box:
· Take the piece of paper and with the pen write down your wish. Type done when you are finished.
· If you feel drawn to do so, decorate the box with your chosen symbols. Type done when you are finished.
· Poke holes in the box lid to help the wish seeds to grow. Type done when you have finished.
· Sprinkle some earth into the bottom of your box to make a shallow bed of earth. This is to scatter your seeds on. Type done when you have finished.
· Place in the box your paper wish that you have written and your symbol for your wish.
· Sprinkle this with more earth. Type done when you have finished.
· Then sprinkle the seeds and the rose petals on top of the earth inside the box.
· Cover the final layer with earth. Type done when you have finished.
· Place the lid on the box, have it ready to plant the box when you feel it is the right time over the next couple of days. Type done when you have finished.
· Keep the rose petal and seed mix to scatter on the box before burying it.
EVERYONE Finish of by saying:
On this scared blessed day, we thank you, Great Mother and Father, for all that you have given and will continue to give. You who make all of life anew and joyous with your sacred union. May you continue to bring magic and laughter into our lives.
Ancient ones I celebrate with you….
So mote it be!
LADY BELTANE: I close this circle from below to above us. I close this circle from west to east. I close this circle from south to north. May you go in peace, harmony, and love until we meet again the circle is closed but never broken. Blessed be dear brothers and sisters.
RITUAL TO IS OVER NOW TO CELEBRATE SAMHAIN AND BELTANE RISE YOUR GLASS HIGH AND SALUTE OUR GODS AND GODDESSES. Please stay to visit, ask questions, or just hang out for as long as you would like to.
There are certain sabbats on the calendar that are just bigger than the rest. Obviously Samhain is one of those. For many Pagans it’s the annual “reset” button, and its associations with death and the final harvest give it an extra degree of gravitas that most sabbats just don’t have. Add in its overlap with the secular Halloween and you’ve got the makings of very big holiday. The other “big” sabbat is generally Beltane for a variety of reasons. In colder climes it’s a “coming out” party, plus there are all the goings on about new life, the first planting, and of course sex. Sex is always a big seller.
Many Pagans are solitary practitioners, either by choice or by necessity. But most traditional activities for Beltane are designed for either large groups or for couples (and straight couples at that). In 2014 and 2015 I wrote a series of rituals for those working alone on the Wheel of the Year. Every year they’re near the top of the list of most popular posts – especially the Beltane ritual.
But what if you’d like to celebrate Beltane with something other than a ritual? Maybe you’re part of a group that holds its rituals on the Saturday nearest the holiday and you don’t want to do a second ritual. Or maybe you’re just feel the need to do something other than a ritual this time.
It is during this time of year that the green magician and herbalist begin laying the sacred plot of the apothecary garden, awakening sleeping roots with offerings of milk and honey and collecting the early blossoms and buds of springtime for the altar and the creation of lustral waters. This year it has stayed cold longer than it normally does, making it feel more like winter than spring. Although the signs of the coming summer are beginning to make themselves known. There are many things to be done both indoors and outdoors to prepare for the growing season.
We all have ancestors, both of blood and of spirit, and each of our lives rests firmly on the foundation of their sacrifice. They are as near to us as our breath and bones, and when related with in conscious ways, they can be a tremendous source of healing, guidance, and companionship. The ancestors we choose to honor may include not only recent and more distant family but also beloved friends and community, cultural and religious leaders, and even other-than-human kin such as companion animals. Our ancestors bring vital support to fulfill our potential here on Earth, and, through involvement in our lives, also further their own growth and maturation in the spirit realms.
Like the living, spirits of the deceased run the full spectrum from wise and loving to self-absorbed and harmful. Physical death is a major event for the soul, a rite of passage we will all face, and the living can provide critical momentum for the recently deceased to make the initiatory leap to become a helpful ancestor. Once the dead have become ancestors, part of their post-death journey may include making repairs for wrongs committed while here on Earth. For their sake and for ours, it’s good to spend a little time now and again feeding our relationships with the ancestors. The five suggestions below, none of which require belief in any specific tradition or dogma, are safe and effective ways to assist our beloved dead and to welcome the ongoing support and blessings of the ancestors in our everyday lives.
Fulfill Your Soul’s Purpose as an Ethical and Loving Person…
To read the rest of this article please click on this link: 5 Ways to Honor Your Ancestors
The cluster of recently appeared religions known as Paganism have developed, over the past sixty years, a distinctive cycle of annual festivals, most of which draw on long historic roots but that are grouped together in a modern framework. No study has yet been made of the manner in which this cycle developed, and potentially rich rewards may be gained from doing so. Such a project is a rare opportunity to study a religious festive tradition in the process of evolution, and also to suggest features of the nature of tradition in modern societies, and the manner in which it is perceived by scholars in different disciplines.
During the past thirty years, scholars have gradually become aware of the existence, across the western world, of a rapidly growing complex of modern religions organised under the label of Paganism. [1  In conformity with practices now becoming established in the discipline of Religious Studies, I refer to modern Pagan religions with a capital letter, but keep the lower case, “pagan,” when referring to the pre-Christian religions of Europe and the Near East, and to subsequent reflections on them. For a discussion of the rationale behind this distinction, see Hutton (2003Hutton, Ronald. 2003. Witches, Druids and King Arthur: Studies in Paganism, Myth and Magic, London: Hambledon and London., xiii–xv).View all notes] Although they differ from each other in the nature of their deities, rites, and organisation, they have certain definitive features in common: most obviously, a veneration of the feminine principle of divinity as well as the masculine, a sense of an inherent sanctity in the natural world, an ethic of responsible individual self-expression that rejects concepts of sin and salvation, and an identification with the pre-Christian religions of Europe and the Near East. They are also more or less united by the observation of a common pattern of eight annual seasonal festivals. The study of festivity is currently a focus of considerable interest among scholars of religion, society, and culture, in several different disciplines: it is, indeed, a phenomenon encountered in all, or virtually all, human cultures. The most comprehensive and considered definition of a festival, by a social scientist, seems to have been that of Alessandro FalassiFalassi, Alessandro. 1987. “Festival: Definition and Morphology”. In Time Out of Time: Essays on the Festival, Edited by: Falassi, Alessandro. 1–10. Albuquerque: University of New Mexico Press.: “a periodically recurrent, social occasion in which, through a multiplicity of forms and a series of co-ordinated events, participate directly or indirectly and to various degrees, all members of a whole community, united by ethnic, linguistic, religious, historical bonds and sharing a worldview” (1987Falassi, Alessandro. 1987. “Festival: Definition and Morphology”. In Time Out of Time: Essays on the Festival, Edited by: Falassi, Alessandro. 1–10. Albuquerque: University of New Mexico Press., 2).
To read the rest of this article please click on this link: Modern Pagan Festivals: A Study in the Nature of Tradition