Seasonal Celebrations

Autumn Equinox and Ways to Celebrate


September 21 – September 22

Called Alban Elfed in Welsh which means “the light of the water”.


History:

The autumn equinox marks again, like the spring equinox, the perfect balance between the day and night. The sun is beginning to make it’s descent, animals are beginning to hibernate or prepare their winter storage, plants are beginning to withdraw and preserve their energy. As humans and an agricultural people, we would likely have been doing the same thing. We would have harvested the last crops, preserved meats and put things away in winter storage for protection against the impending harshness of winter. As this festival has evolved over the millennia, it has become representative of the gratitude for the harvest; for the bounty we have in our lives and good food, family and friends. The Gossan Stones in Ireland are aligned with the autumn equinox sunrise.


Ways to Celebrate: 


Set up your altar accordingly: Decorate your home or space with seasonal symbols and colors of nature. Common decorations are  the cornucopia, apples, leaves, pine cones, acorns or other nuts and the colors brown, black and yellow. Find unique items that have strong symbology for you.

Harvest: This time of the year was when final harvests and winter storage preparations were being made. It’s time to do a final outdoor cleaning and putting things away in a safe place for the winter. Buy extra food goods to store away and batten down the hatchets.

Create a craft: Make something representative of the season! Create a fall inspired wreath, leaf art, bouquet or a cornucopia. 

Connect with others: Prepare a Fall Equinox dinner. Listen to appropriate seasonal music. Light candles. Some common dishes are turkey meatballs and pasta, broccoli casserole, harvest ratatouille, squash and carrot or ginger muffins or cake. Enjoy your family and friends. Cook something different you’ve never tried before or try a new wine! Go out to a restaurant you’e never been too. Call up and meet friends or family you haven’t seen in a while to encourage meaningful and new conversation. Attend a pagan social event. Mark this season with something unique to make it feel like more of a special occasion.

Write in your journal: The Autumn Equinox is about bounty and gratitude. Reflect on and be grateful for all that you have! Put your priorities in order and make sure you’re continuing to keep things in perspective and take things in stride.
Make an offering: Make a seasonal mandala with natural objects in a local park or in your own yard. If inclined, you could include bird seed, fruit, berries or nuts for local wildlife in your mandala.
Kindle a bonfire: Have a bonfire outside if possible, although indoors is fine as well if you have a fireplace.
Nature walk and meditation: Take a meditative walk through nature! If so desired, collect natural objects to build crafts at home or add to a fall inspired altar. Visit a farm, orchard or pumpkin patch! 

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May love and laughter light your days,

And warm your heart and home.

May good and faithful friends be yours,

Wherever you may roam.

May peace and plenty bless your world,

With joy that long endures.

May all life’s passing seasons,

Bring the best to you and yours!

-Irish blessing

For more information check out The Magic of the Autumn Equinox: Seasonal celebrations to honour nature’s ever-turning wheel by Danu Forest!


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Isla MacKinnon

Writer and Herbalist

Website   Facebook   Instagram

A founding member of Discover Druidry, Isla is a writer, photographer and avid gardener. She wrote the Celtic Druidry Handbook: An Evidence Based Guide.

 

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