A 21st Century Wheel of the Year: Release at Samhain

The Druid's Garden

Samhain.  The time of no time, the time of the ancestors, the time of the wild hunt. The time when darkness blankets the land, the frost covers the landscape, and many things die. Here in the hemisphere, this signals the end of the fall months and the beginning of the long and dark cold of the winter. I always feel like Samhain is when we get our first hard frost. The first frost cuts through the land, tearing through tender annuals like tomatoes and basil, freezing the tips of the last of the aster and goldenrod, and hastening the annual dropping of the leaves.  It leaves a wake of brown and death in its stead, and signals clearly that summer is over and winter is soon to come.

Nature Mandala

In my first post on this series (Receptivity at the Fall Equinox), I made the case that the…

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The Butzemann (Magical Scarecrow) Tradition at Imbolc and through the Light Half of the Year

The Druid's Garden

Last year’s butzemann, dressed in her finery (Technically, she was a Butzefrau!)

For the last three years, I’ve spent part of my Imbolc celebration making a Butzemann for our land.  The Butzemann is a really interesting tradition from PA Dutch (German) culture called the Butzemann (literally, Boogieman).  In a nutshell, the Butzemann is a magical scarecrow that protects the land for a season.  He is created at Imbolc from natural materials and given clothes and a heart. At the Spring Equinox, the Butzemann is shown the property and the breath of life is breathed into the Butzemann, naming him/her for the season.  Then the Butzemann is displayed prominently throughout the season to protect the and.  Before or on Samhain, the Butzemann is burned and the protective spirit is released and then at Imbolc, a new tradition begins. Today I thought I’d share this tradition with my readers, in case they…

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Getting Spooky | Full Blue Crone Moon Hag’s Candle DIY Ritual

Full Blue Crone Moon Hag’s Candle DIY Ritual

This Full Moon is our second Full Moon this month making it a Blue Moon. Full moons offer us illumination and insight. Our intuition is increased and our third eye is open at this time. A Blue Moon offers us a second chance towards illumination.

This is also the Crone Moon and Samhain. The Crone Moon represents ancestral wisdom, intuitive knowing and crone energy. On this Samhain Full Moon, the veil is at its thinnest, and our intuition is at its strongest.

Full Blue Crone Moon Hag’s Candle DIY Ritual

The word Samhain means “Summer’s End.” It marks the end of the harvest season, and acts as a way to celebrate the darker months ahead.

A great way to celebrate this time of year is by tapping into fire magick.

Making a “Hag’s candle” on Samhain to be used in the coming winter helps us tap into the Crone Moon energy while we prepare for colder and darker months ahead.

A Hag’s Candle is a candle made from the stalk of a mullein plant.

Mullein is a wild plant that grows almost everywhere. Mullein is great for the lungs, stomach and infection. In folklore, Mullein is said to keep away evil spirits. It offers protection, illumination, courage and crone magick.

Read original article at: Spirit de la Lune ~ Getting Spooky|Full Blue Crone Moon Hag’s Candle DIY Ritual

Awen, Bardic Arts, and the Ancestors

The Druid's Garden

The time between Samhain and Yule is always a time of deep reflection for me.  As a homesteader, this represents the end of the season– the first frost happened in the week I was drafting this post, making everything curl up and die. By the time late November comes around, any major outdoor projects are complete for the year. We anticipate, even embrace, the winter months when snow carpets the ground and all is frozen and still.  While in the light half of the year, I spend most of my spare time gardening, doing various permaculture projects, or just being outside in the summer. In the dark half of the year, this is when I turn to more inward-focused bardic arts, more intense practice of my magic and journeying,  and learning from books of all kinds.  So as we move into the dark half of the year, I’ll be spending…

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Ancestral Herbalism and Samhain: Working Deeply with Rosemary

The Druid's Garden

Rosemary from the Plant Spirit Oracle Rosemary Card from the Plant Spirit Oracle

As we quickly approach Samhain, it is a useful practice to spend some time with rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis) and build here into your Samhain practices. In this post, we look into some of the magic and medicine of Rosemary, and I share a number of ancestor and Samhain-focused practices that you can use with Rosemary.

An Ancestral Ally of Humans: History, Medicine, Magic

Before we get into what you can make or do with rosemary, let’s spend some time exploring and understanding this ancient herb. Rosemary has been with humanity almost as long as we have written records. Native to the mediterranean region, rosemary was first found referenced on cuineform tablets from Ancient Egypt that are from 5000 BCE–thus, humanity has at least an 8000 year old relationship with this herb (but I suspect it is much longer than our written history!)…

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All Hallows Eve ‘Soul Cakes’

Samhain: Honoring Ancestors of Craft and Tradition | Coby Michael Ward

Good Witches Homestead

Samhain, the season of the witch, is a time for us to honor the powers that underlie our Craft.  The hidden powers behinds the scenes, guiding our movements and our inspiration.  The Dead guide us; they are present when we weave our magic.  Those who have laid the foundations for our Great Arte, fertilizing our holy ground with their blood.  The Dead are always with us, but this is their time.  The mothers and fathers of our traditions, great witches, teachers, and keepers of lore make their presence known, returning to celebrate with us.  Hallowmas is the great twilight when the worlds of the living and the dead move as one.  The fires we light shine like beacons in the spirit world.  This is also the time to honor spirits of tradition, the collective familiar spirits called egregores that are the manifestation of us coming together.

Honor the Witch Within

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Cake For The Priestesses Of The Dead — Gather Victoria

Halloween takes its roots in ancient festivals and feasts honouring the dead, like Samhain. Which makes it a perfect time for cake…not just any cake, but a cake in remembrance of the Haliorunna. Never heard of them? They were the oracular priestesses of the “underworld mysteries” whose rites of divination and ancestor veneration were demonized and…

via Cake For The Priestesses Of The Dead — Gather Victoria

Samhain in the Devil’s Garden | Coby Michael Ward

Good Witches Homestead

All Hallows Eve is quickly approaching.  The darkness is creeping closer every day.  You can feel the cold grip of the coming winter slithering its way back up from its yearly resting place deep in the Underworld.  The excitement and anticipation on both sides of the veil are tangible.  It is during this time of year that most witches are at their witchiest, reveling in the sensory delights of the coming holiday.  For me, Samhain/Halloween (because I celebrate both) is an entire season, not just one day.  It begins at the autumnal equinox when the scales begin to tip in darkness’ favor.  Then there is the October full moon known as the Hunter’s Moon or Blood Moon.  I look at Samhain October 31st as the culmination of this strange energy that has been building which bleeds into November.  The Sun hangs low in the sky, crows can be heard cawing…

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The Witch Reborn in Autumn: Spiritual Death and the Dance of Bones | Spirits Dance Bones

Good Witches Homestead

The Wild Witch and the Dance of Bones

The moon ascends from her primal cave,
And my feet twitch in excitement.
For this is the long-awaited call
Back to my soul’s home.
I become a wild witch once more.
Hail Autumn,
With your winds of change,
Blowing me free of what has passed,
Dancing in the delight of freedom.
Spiraling joyfully towards the darkness that is my truth.
Spinning onwards to Hekate’s Cave,
The font of magick and mystery.
The spirits of the season join me and the leaves, in our delight,
Knowing deep in our souls that we are connected,
In our pursuit of the deeper truths.
Swirling wildness embraces me,
As I proclaim
My place among them.
Our dance calls forth the spirits,
Of the departed and the mighty,
Night wandering under the pale light of the moon,
Onwards, our steps in harmony,
Towards the crossroads where we…

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