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The Feast of The Dead

October 31 - November 2

 
Samhain is the New Year and begins the dark half of the year.  It marks the end of the Harvest and the time to finish the business of Summer.  it begins at Sunset on October 31 and continues through Sunset on November 2, and commences with the lighting of the sacred bonfires.  Old accounts are settled and old habits are discarded.  It is a time of "away with the old, in with the new".  Fairies and Earth Spirits are most active at this time and food and drink offerings are made to them by spilling such onto the Earth.  Dead ancestors are honored by a feast and a place is set for them at the table.  Prayers are offered up on their behalf and requests for help are made to them.  Since the veil between our Mundane world and their Otherworld is thinnest at this time, it is a wonderful time for divination to see what the coming year holds.  This is the proper time for Croning Rituals as the goddess in the form of the Crone is strongest at this time of the year.  The goddess Cerridwen and the good god, the Dagda, mourn the death of the son Lugh.  In Gnostic Christianity, The All That Is and Sophia mourn the death of Jesus.  The cruxificion and the burial are remembered with sadness.  Since the life of the Son is over in this form, but will be born again, this is a good time for past-life work and meditation.  When the bonfire dies, the ashes are sprinkled over the fields for protection over the winter months. 

Pagan Deities: the Dagda - Cerridwen - Lugh

Colors:  Black and Orange
 
Customs: bonfires, apple games, frightening costumes, fire calling, tricks, pumpkin carving, stone burning

Symbols: cauldrons, jack o'lanterns, pumpkins, corn husk bundles, poisonous herbs, Saturn, skulls, black cats, witches, fear/awe

Sacred Foods: pumpkin, root and vine vegetables, apples, red meat, red wine
 
Herbs:  Acorn, Oak, Apple, Corn, Mullein, Pumpkin, Sage, Turnip, Potato, Wormwood