We are entering the darker half of the year in the northern hemisphere, as our part of the earth begins to settle down for a long winter’s rest. Winter stands ready at the threshold just waiting for nature’s invitation to cross. There’s more than just a delicious chill in the air, now the wind has bite, now there is the breath of ice and frost dancing on the windows, on the bushes, on the brittle grass in early mornings; now the slightest smell of nature’s decay as the soil hardens and leaves prepare to plummet to the ground in preparation for winter.
There truly is tremendous beauty to this season. It’s a sad beauty though, powerful, moving, but tinged with just a touch of the taste of loss. It’s a beauty that highlights the transitory nature of things and somehow that very sense of pending loss enhances the magical feeling of this time.
Keep the faith.
Stay the course.
Love the journey.
artwork from deviantart
Halloween is all about celebrating the cycle of death and rebirth. In the northern hemisphere, the leaves are dying and nature is preparing for the still of winter; in the southern hemisphere, the dormant buds are preparing to rebirth themselves and open to the start of summer.
Death and rebirth is an important cycle that is seen in nature and mirrored within us. We are always going through our own process of shedding, releasing and rebirthing ourselves as we travel along the journey of life.
There are many cultures around the world that choose to celebrate the dead during the end of October and the start of November. In the western world there is All Hallows Eve and in Mexico there is the Day of the Dead. The ancient Celtics celebrated Samhain and the Ancient Egyptians were also believed to have celebrated The Beautiful Feast of the Valley around this time too.
Samhain translates to “end of Summer” and was a celebration of the end of the year and many rituals were conducted that incorporated the theme of death and rebirth. Part of these death rituals during Samhain involve putting out food for departed souls and having feasts to honour the spirit world and thank them for the harvests of the year. The Day of the Dead celebrations in Mexico are a time of year where it is believed that departed loved ones can return to Earth to deliver blessings to their family. Feasts are had and families create special altars with their loved one’s photographs as they celebrate their arrival back to Earth.
Death in the Western world unfortunately still largely remains a taboo topic although there is a growing consciousness towards the unseen worlds, and a growing need for healthy attitudes around death. Celebrating death is also about celebrating life, and honouring and giving thanks to the departed souls who have touched your life and to the life you are blessed to be living.
It is the time when we remember those we’ve lost and what the past year has harvested. It is the time to set aside our own desires or goals and remember that we are part of something so much more than any individual dream. We honour all of those who have come before, we carry the hopes of all our long line of dead into our own futures, futures that we have the power and potential to craft and weave each moment of every day.
This meditation reminds us of that connected to all that was, all that is and all that we have the potential to be….