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October 24, 2005

Halloween

Our Halloween traditions have their roots in the Celtic holiday of Samhain. The ancient Celts divided their year into Dark and Light seasons. Beltane on May 1st began the cycle of Light – Spring, Summer, and the planting season, while Samhain on November 1st began the cycle of Dark – Autumn, Winter and the harvest. Samhain was considered to be the beginning of the New Year and during this festival, according to Irish folklore, the barriers between the world of the living and the world of the non-living faded and both worlds were allowed to mingle. A feast was set up to feed and honor the dead, old hearth fires were extinguished and new ones were lit to celebrate the New Year. Our present Halloween celebrations of bonfires and trick-or-treating come from these ancient traditions.

Halloween is one of my favorite times of the year. I am of Celtic ancestry, born on Halloween Eve (to which I attributed my pumpkin-colored hair!) so I have always felt the energy of the season in my blood. For me Halloween was a time of wild winds and crisp New England weather, where all barriers were dropped and anything was possible. As a child on that night, I felt the energy of the spirits of the world join with me to celebrate their freedom and take me with them on their journey. That and chocolate, too!! What could be better!?!

So enjoy the wild celebration of Samhain and re-energize yourself for the New Year!

Posted by Linda Dalton at October 24, 2005 11:21 PM

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