Samhain, pronounced "Sow-in" or "Soween" usually celebrated on October 31. It is the Celtic new year and a
time when the veil between the physical and spiritual world are thin. It is a time to commune with ancestors and loved ones
that have passed over. We never summon or call back the dead, we just let them know that if they wish to speak to us we are
more than willing to listen. Samhain opens the dark half of the year, it is the first day of winter. A time for the Goddess
Morrigan and her consort the God The Dagda. It is also a time for honoring the crone Goddess Hekate. Honey is good to offer
to Her, we offer her honey along with our cresent cakes that we make at almost every Sabbat. In some regions Herne the Hunter
begins his Wild Hunt on Samhain. The "dumb supper" is held on this night, the dumb supper is a dinner set out for the spirits.
During which no one is to speak so as to give respect and honor to those who have passed on.This practice is still followed
in parts of the Celtic world.
It is traditional on Samhain night to leave a plate of food outside the home for the souls of the
dead. This is the night when the veil between both worlds is at its thinnest. A candle place in the window guides them to
the lands of eternal summer and burying apples in the hard-packed Earth, "feeds" the passed ones on their journey.
Wisdom of the Crone, Death of God, Reflection on our place in the Wheel of the Year. Honor the dead, end of
summer, the New Year, and celebrating reincarnation.
Black, Orange and Red.
Symbols-Jack-O-Lantern, Balefire, Besom, Masks, The Cauldron and Waning Moon.
All Crone Goddesses, The Dying/Dead God
Obsidian, Onyx & Carnelian
Ritual Oils -
Frankincense, Basil, Yarrow, Lilac, Ylang-Ylang, Camphor & Clove.
Beets, turnips, apples, corn, nuts, gingerbread, cider, mulled wines, and pumpkin dishes.
Yule is also called the Winter Solstice - Dec. 21st. Yule comes from the Norse Lul meaning wheel. Yule is
the time when the Goddess gives birth to the Sun God. It also marks the birth of the Oak King, God of the waxing year. The
Yule Log is an important rite on this night. A log bought into the house is kept burning all night. Afterwards, the ashes
were scattered in the fields to ensure a good harvest for the next year. Keep a small pice of the left over Yule Log to use
as kindling at the next Yule.
Lore - One traditional Yuletide practice is the creation of a Yule tree. This can be a living, potted tree
which can later be planted in the ground or a cut one.
Appropriate Wiccan decorations are fun to make, from strings of
dried rosebuds and cinnamon sticks for garlands, to bags of fragrant spices which are hung from the boughs. Quartz crystals
can be wrapped with shiny wire and suspended from branches to resembl icicles. Apples, oranges, and lemons hanging from the
boughs were customary in ancient times.
Many enjoy the custom of lighting the Yule Log. This represents the rebirth of
the God within the sacred fire of the Mother Goddess. As the log burns, visualize the Sun shining within it and think of the
coming warmer days.
Colors - Red, Green, White and Gold
Symbols - Evergreen trees, Yule Log, Holly, Eight-spoked Wheel, Wreaths, and spinning Wheels.
Deities - Newborn God, Tripple Goddess
Stones - Bloodstone, Ruby, Garnet
Ritual Oils - Rosemary, Myrrh, Nutmeg, Saffron, Cedar/Pine, Wintergreen & Ginger.
Food - Nuts, Apples, Pears, Cakes of Carraways soaked in cider and pork are traditional fare. Wassail, Lambswook,
Hibiscus or Ginger tea are great for the Simple Feast or Yule meals.
Imbolc is also known as Candlemas, St. Brigits
Day, Brides Day, or Groundhogs Day. The word Imboc means "in the belly". It is the celebration of the return of the maiden
of spring. During this time we see the first stirrings of life and spring. The Celtic Goddess Brigit/Brigid, pronounced "Breed",
is honored on this day. She is the triple muse Goddess who brings fertility of the upcoming spring. She is also a fire Goddess
who rules over healing, inspiration, poetry and smithcraft. One tradition is to make Brigit a bed. This entails making a corn
dolly to represent the Goddess in her maiden form and making a phallic wand and placing them side by side in a basket. The
corn dolly is called a biddy. Another tradition is that a Priestess should wear a crown of 13 candles. Some do this to represent
the young maiden bringing forth the light of spring and some traditions use this to represent the Mother, because it is the
Mother Earth who is quickened at Imbolc.
It is traditional upon Imbolc, at sunset or just after ritual, tolight every lamp in the house,
even if only for a few moments. Or you can light candles in each room. This is to honor the Sun's rebirth. If snow lies on
the ground outside, walk in it for a moment and recall the warmth of summer. With your projective hand, trace an image of
the sun on the snow.
White, Yellow & Pink
Candles, The Bride, Burrowing Animals, Grain Dolly& Sun Wheels.
God and Goddess as children, All Virgin Goddess'
Turquoise & Amethyst
Ritual Oils -
Jasmine, Apricot, Carnation, Sweet Pea, Neroli & Olive
Foods appropriate to eat on this day include those from the dairy, since Imbolc marks the festival
of calving. Spicy and full bodied foods in honor of the sun are equally attuned. Also peppers, onions, leeks, shallots, garlic
and chives are appropriate. Spiced wines and dishs containing raisins, any food symbolic of the sun are traditional.
Spring Equinox falls around March 21st., also called Ostara, Eostre and Lady Day. It is a time when light
& dark are in balance, but the light is conquring the darkness. Now the light has grown in strength & thus is the
time to celebreate the balance in all things, male & female, light and dark, death and life, & also the balance withing
ourselves. The Spring Equinox is the time when the Greek Goddess Persephone reamerges from the underworld and in doing so
her Mother Demeter stops mourning her absence and starts the beginning of Spring.
A traditional Vernal Equinox pastime; go to a field and randomly collect wildflowers. Be sure you
thank the flowers for their sacrifice before picking them. Then bring them home and divine their magickal meanings by the
use of books, your intuition, a pendulum or whatever other means. The flowers you have chosen, reveal you inner thoughts and
It is important at this time of renewed life to plan a walk through gardens, a park, woodlands, forest or
some other green place. This is not simply exercise, and you should be on no other mission. It isn't even justan appreciation
of nature, but makes your walk a celebration or ritual of nature itself.
Other traditional activites include planting seeds, working on magickal gardens & practicing all forms
of herb work, whether magickal, medicinal, cosmetic, culinary or artistic.
Green, Yellow, Pink and all pastels.
Eggs, New Moon, Butterflies
Youthful and Virgile God and Goddess
Aquamarine, Rose Quartz, Moonstone
Ritual Oils -
Lotus, Ginger & Magnolia
Foods in tune with this day include those made of seeds, such as sunflower, pumpkin, sesame seeds
and pine nuts. Sprouts are equally appropriate as are leafy green vegetables. Flower dishes such as stuffed naturtiums or
carnation cupcakes also find their place here.
Beltaine means "bel-Fire", derived from the
Celtic God Bel, which means Lord. Beltaine and Samhain are the two greatest festivals, the beginning of Summer and the beginning
of Winter. Beltaine is the time when the Goddess and the God marry - a time when the Goddess changes from the maiden aspect
to the mother aspect. Since fertility was a major part of this time of year, buring Beltaine, the maypole was constructed.
The maypole is a large pole with a crown of flower and colored ribbons on the top. The pole is the male phallic symbol and
the crown is female. Another feature of Beltaine festival is jumping over the fire. Beltaine is the Oak King sacrificial mating
and resurection. He mates with the Goddess at this time & then at Midsummer is "overrulled" by his twin brother the Holly
Weaving and plaiting are traditional arts at this time of the year. This represents
the joining together of two substances to form a third, this is the spirit of Beltane. This is the union of the God and Goddess,
the Sacred Marriage, all new life, fertility for all living things and the end of winter.
Red, Green, White, Dark Yellow
Eggs, Flowers, Chalice, May Pole, Butterchurn, Flower Chaplet, & May Baskets.
Marriage or sexual union of Deities, All Mother Goddesses.
Sapphire & Bloodstone
Ritual Oils -
Passion Flower, Rose, Tuber Rose & Vanilla
Foods traditionally come from the dairy and dishes such as marigold custard and vanilla
ice cream are fine.
Midsummer or Litha is celebrated on or around June 21st, it is the Summer Solstice and the longest
day and the shortest night of the year. It is a day to honor the sun as it is in its height of power. From now on, the light
will begin to wane and the darkness will predominate. This is also the time of the Oak & Holly Kings. On Midsummer, the
Holly King defeats his twin brother the Oak King and begins His annual reign. On Yule, the Oak King will defeat the Holly
King and reign until Midsummer.
Litha is practically the classic time two perform magick of all kinds. Healings, love
magick and protections are especially suitable. Herbs can be dried over the ritual fire if you are celebrating outdoors. Lep
the fire for purification and renewed energy.
This time is the honoring of the Sun/God at his power. Also saying farwell to the waxing year
and preparation for harvest. Honoring the pregnant Goddess and the beginning of the waning year.
Blue, Green, Gold and Tan
Fire, the Sun, Blades, Mistletoe, Oak Trees, Balefire, Sun Wheels, Faeries
Father Gods, Mother Goddesses, Pregnant Deities and Sun Gods.
Emerald, Jade, Tiger's Eye, Lapis Lazuli and Diamond
Ritual Oils -
Heliotrope, Cinnamin, Sandlewood, Lavendar, Orange, All Mint Oils, Lemon and
Fresh fruits are standard for this Sabbat. Summer squash, lemons and oranges, just
to name a few.
Lughnasadh, pronounced "Loo-nus-oo" is the Celtic festival
of Lugh. Lughnasadh means the commemoration of Lugh who is a fire and light God. He is also a God that undergoes death and
rebirth in a sacrificial mating theme with the Goddess. During this time, the Hlly King is the God that undergoes the death
and rebirth. During this time, again make the corn dollies to represent the "dying" God and keep it until the following year
when you burn it and make a new doll. Lughnasadh is the first harvest, Autumnal Equinox is the second and Samhain the final
and third harvest. Grain and corn are predominate at this time because they symbolize the fertility and abundance of the Earth.
The God is beginning to wane during this time and the Goddess is changing into Her crone aspect.
This is the time to plant seeds from the fruit consumed in ritual. If they sprout, grown the
plant with love and as a symbol of your connection with the God and Goddess.
Wheat weaving (make corn dollies and etc), is an appropriate activity for Lughnasadh. Visit the fields, orchards,
lakes and well.
Honor the Parient deities, Honor the Sun Gods, Celebrating first harvest.
Red, Gold, Yellow, Green, Orange & Citrine.
Corn, All Grains, Bread, Full Moon, Wheat.
Sun Gods, Mother Goddesses.
Yellow Diamond, Peridot & Citrine.
Ritual Oils -
Eucalyptus, Corn and Safflower.
The foods of Lughnasadh include bread, blackberries and all berries. Acorns, crabapples, all grains
and locally ripeproduce. A cake is sometimes baked and cider is used in place of wine.
Mabon is the name of the Welsh God who represents
fertility in Welsh lore. Mabon is a time when both day and night are equal, not only is day and night equal but everything
is in balance at this time. Mabon is also the time Oak & Holly King. Throughout the year they have challenged each other
and then mate with the Goddess. At Mabon, the Holly King challenges the Oak King and wins, the Holly King rules until the
Spring Equinox where the opposite occurs.
A traditional practice is to walk in wild places and forests. Gather seed pods, and dried plants.
These can be used to decorate the home and other saved for future herbal magick.
Celebrating the second harvest, balance, honoring the aging deities, honoring the spirit world, darness overtaking
light & celebration of wine.
Brown, Orange, Violet, Maroon, Russet, Deep Gold
Grapes, Wine, Vines, Garland, Gourds, Burial Cairns, Rattles, Horn of Plenty, Indian Corn &
Wine Deities and Aging Deities
Amethyst & Yellow Topaz
Ritual Oils -
Apple Blossom, Hay/straw, Black Pepper and Patchouly.
The foods of Mabon include grains, fruits and vegetables, especially corn. Cornbread is the traditional
food as are beans and baked squash.