SAMHAIN, is called “The Day” and is the most important celebration of the year. This holiday begins at sunset on October 30th and extends into the Celtic New Year, which begins at sunset on October 31st (Halloween). It marks “the beginning” of the dark half of the year. It’s meaning is beginnings and endings —death and rebirth. This is a time when the veil between the worlds is very thin. Protection was put in place to ward off harmful or mischievous spirits; communication with the loved ones who had passed was encouraged. This is a time to honour your ancestors. Samhain was dedicated to the spirits of all generations during the time when worship of ancestors was the basis of tribal bonding.
Samhain is also the time to honour all those women who died during the inquisition and witch hunts throughout Europe and North America.
This is also time to honour all people who are oppressed and struggling for freedom (Black Lives Matter).
“The Day” was a time to compost the old and save that which is worthwhile—the seeds for the coming year’s harvest. A time to go within and make sacred time for meditation and self-reflection. A time to seek places that are sacred, commune with the ancestors —let them teach you that our body may pass away but we are eternal spirits.
So this is the perfect time to don your costumes and masks and celebrate “endings and new beginnings”.
The Birch tree represents the beginning of the Celtic New Year and offers a doorway into our own strong, innate, inner nature. Merlin shows up in my life at the exact right time to remind me that as we grow old and trembling in our anatomies, the key is to learn something new—it never fails you. Happy New Year!
Excerpt taken from “The Healing Power of Trees” by Sharalyn Hildago