Tuesday, October 27, 2009


The great fire festival, Samhain (pronounced SOW-in in Irish, or SAA-vin for a Scottish variation), is nearly upon us, and it has me thinking about the "pagan new year".

I celebrate both Dec. 31st and Oct. 31st in some way as a "new year", and it recently occurred to me that I have no problem with both of them. So then I had to ask myself why that is, and the answer was, I think, interesting.

Dec. 31st, or New Years Eve...I've been celebrating this since I was old enough to stay up and have a sip of champagne. As I got older I learned the extra little traditions that my family had (make sure you're clean, fed and have money in your pocket for the turn of the clock, for whatever you are at that moment will impact the rest of the year). This celebration has distilled itself to be about my "regular" or "normal" life (I don't like either of those words, but I can't seem to find anything better). It's about my day to day workings, my relationships with my family at face value. I've never really made any resolutions other than to have a better year and continue to work on those bad habits that I'm trying to break.

I enjoy the gathering of family and friends, it's silly and fun and safe for us. I look forward to it every year.

Oct. 31st, or Halloween or Samhain...this I didn't start celebrating in an older sense till I was in my late teens. At first it was a sort of silly aside for an already silly fun day. We'd go to a late movie and wish each other "Happy New Year!" during it, knowing anyone else in the theatre would think we were crazy. But then I learned more, got to participate in some Samhain rituals, and gradually internalized this day as the new year of my spirit. Any resolution I make then relates to my spiritual growth, marking those epiphanies I had over the year and the desire to continue. It's a moment of quiet contemplation, where I say a few words to my beloved dead, cast off those things about me I do not like, and resolve to become a better person in the year ahead.

Samhain is my favorite holiday all around now. I love the costumes, trick or treating with children, giving away candy at the house...all of the fun commercial things that the holiday has turned into. And then later, the more private moments in which I connect to the greater mystery that is the wheel of the year.

How does this relate to my jewelry? Well, each piece I make is magickal, and any new understanding I have about myself and the way I relate to the world and my spirituality can only make me a better witch, and in turn make my jewelry better able to serve you. Leastways that's that's how I see it anyway.

Till next time, be well,

1 comment:

  1. Hmmm... never consciously thought about about it but... since you brought it up...

    Samhain for me is exclusively the Feast of the Dead. The day to honor our ancestors and to reaffirm life. I know it's the Celtic New Year, but I just can't get used to celebrating it as such; even after 20 something years.

    New Year's Day is my New Year... and I even treat the Vernal Equinox like a new year as opposed to Samhain. Maybe because Yule is the rebirth of the Sun. And maybe because the equinox is the birth of the spring. Birth=New to me. It could be that the Romans started the year at spring and the months before were considered the buffer between the years... the time to prep for the new birth of life.

    As for not liking "regular" or "normal" life to describe the time away from "magical" life... I think it's good to see you don't like to differentiate. That just means you live a magical life always and see the magic in the most mundane. I'm a lot like you in that respect. There is no separation, really.

    As always... a great post!
    P.S. I love Yule the best, btw. It usually makes mean people nice. I like that.