Samhain Blessings everyone! I managed to fill much of my day with Halloween/Samhain activities for my first ever Samhain as a Pagan.
Things kicked off with making Soul Cakes in the morning. I used a simplified version of this recipe, which appealed to me because of the cinnamon and nutmeg involved! I’m really not much of a baker at all, but getting into Paganism has slowly gotten me more interested in cooking, and these Soul Cakes turned out pretty well!
I went to work in the afternoon, and took some Soul Cakes with me to give to colleagues. Only one person made a comment on the “satanic” pentagrams I scored on the cakes, but of course I told him that the pentagram is a universal symbol of magic that can be found in practically every culture, even Japan.
My husband picked me up after work and we went to the Curzon Mondrian cinema to see a special preview of the New Zealand vampire comedy What We Do In The Shadows. It’s a hilarious mockumentary that any vampire fan will love and it was perfect for Halloween.
We got back home pretty late, and it was time for me to perform a Samhain ritual.
This was more difficult than other rituals I’ve performed recently. For one thing, I was feeling pretty worn out and not hugely in the ritual mood – however, as usually happens, I found myself getting more and more energised as the ritual progressed.
The other problem was that I hadn’t really prepared for this ritual as thoroughly as I usually do. I wasn’t anticipating doing a solo Samhain ritual at all as I originally planned to do it with my moot Medway Pagans, but my brother-in-law suddenly planned a birthday meal for my sister the same day so I had to skip it. This meant that I hadn’t had time to write out a script for the ritual, which is what I usually do. Although it was quite interesting to attempt a ritual without writing it out beforehand, I think it was less successful because I left out a lot of things that afterwards I felt I should have included, and I didn’t feel it was as special as it could have been – it just felt very much like a regular Esbat.
In the spirit of Samhain, the Feast of the Dead, I called the quarters widdershins and orientated my altar West rather than East as I usually do. Offering some of the Soul Cakes and wine, I called upon the Great God and Great Goddess as their incarnations as Gods and Goddesses of Death, and also offered blessings to my ancestors and to friends and family who have passed on. Finally, as I often do, I took a Soul Cake and the wine and left it as an offering to Hecate (and other wandering spirits) by the local crossroads.
I was disappointed not to see the local foxes out (it being Halloween the streets are a bit noisier than usual), but as I said farewell to the Western quarter, a black and white cat appeared from behind the garden wall and looked me straight in the eyes, which was quite an intense moment and a very good omen for Samhain!
I hope everyone else’s Samhain was magical, spiritual and blessed!