Samhain-Fet Ghede-OCT. 31-NOV 2-Candle Lighting & Petition
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Samhain-Fet Ghede-OCT. 31-NOV 2-Candle Lighting & Petition

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The most celebrated pagan sabbat-when everyone is Pagan for a day! This service is a THREE day service spanning the entirety of this sacred time.

Please include your petition for your goals in the coming year!

Samhain marks one of the two great doorways of the Celtic year, for the Celts divided the year into two seasons: the light and the dark, at Beltane on May 1st and Samhain on November 1st. Some believe that Samhain was the more important festival, marking the beginning of a whole new cycle, just as the Celtic day began at night. For it was understood that in dark silence comes whisperings of new beginnings, the stirring of the seed below the ground. Whereas Beltane welcomes in the summer with joyous celebrations at dawn, the most magically potent time of this festival is November Eve, the night of October 31st, known today of course, as Halloween. 

Samhain (Scots Gaelic: Samhuinn) literally means “summer's end.” With the rise of Christianity, Samhain was changed to Hallowmas, or All Saints' Day, to commemorate the souls of the blessed dead who had been canonized that year, so the night before became popularly known as Halloween, All Hallows Eve, or Hollantide. November 2nd became All Souls Day, when prayers were to be offered to the souls of all who the departed and those who were waiting in Purgatory for entry into Heaven. Throughout the centuries, pagan and Christian beliefs intertwine in a gallimaufry of celebrations from Oct 31st through November 5th, all of which appear both to challenge the ascendancy of the dark and to revel in its mystery.

In the country year, Samhain marked the first day of winter, when the herders led the cattle and sheep down from their summer hillside pastures to the shelter of stable and byre. The hay that would feed them during the winter must be stored in sturdy thatched ricks, tied down securely against storms. Those destined for the table were slaughtered, after being ritually devoted to the gods in pagan times. All the harvest must be gathered in -- barley, oats, wheat, turnips, and apples --for come November, the faeries would blast every growing plant with their breath, blighting any nuts and berries remaining on the hedgerows. Peat and wood for winter fires were stacked high by the hearth. It was a joyous time of family reunion, when all members of the household worked together baking, salting meat, and making preserves for the winter feasts to come. The endless horizons of summer gave way to a warm, dim and often smoky room; the symphony of summer sounds was replaced by a counterpoint of voices, young and old, human and animal. 

This is a significant time for divination, perhaps even more so than May or Midsummer’s Eve, because this was the chief of the three Spirit Nights. Divination customs and games frequently featured apples and nuts from the recent harvest, and candles played an important part in adding atmosphere to the mysteries. In Scotland, a child born at Samhain was said to be gifted with "an d shealladh", “The Two Sights” commonly known as “second sight,” or clairvoyance.

Fet Ghede-

The Haitian Day of the Dead, Fet Gede – the festival of the Sacred Dead, coincides with the Mexican Days of the Dead.  The entire month of November is dedicated to the Gede celebrations in Haiti but is especially honored with ceremonies during the first days of the month. Death transforms from a menacing and fearful reaper, to a “comically grotesque” (Andy Antippas) equalizer. Papa Gede is a psychopomp who stands at the crossroads between life and death with a very crude, often embarrassing, sense of humor and a cunning ability to read people’s minds. He is the patron of death, sex, and regeneration. However, he is also a gentle protector of his people and of children. When there is a life or death situation, he is prayed to, as it is believed that he will not take a life before its time.  His colors are purple, black and white and he is characteristically known for smoking cheap cigars and wearing a top hat and sunglasses – often with only one lens, some say because he sees both worlds.

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