Most anyone who knows anything about anything Pagan-related is familiar with Samhain, or Halloween as others call it. (Okay, I usually call it Halloween too, old habits y'know?)
As the Pagan new year, this seemed a good time for me to begin this... my virtual Book of Shadows, if you will. My personal life is undergoing a lot of... evolution right now. It seems to fit.
Samhain is the third and final harvest, time for autumn crops such as pumpkins and apples and the like. After this, the earth goes to sleep through the winter, it dies and is reborn again as the Maiden, fresh young and new. (You have no idea how difficult it was for me not to make a reborn-zombie joke here, it being Halloween. Oh, guess I blew it anyways.) Traditionally anything not yet harvested is left as an offering to the spirits of the land. This is the time for endings as the Wheel of the Year completes its circles and begins again; everything cycles. It's the time to put to rest anything you do not want to bring in to the new year- end bad habits, let go of things you have been holding on to.
It is also time for final goodbyes. Especially if you have had anyone you love pass on this year, you should honor their memories. Traditionally a turnip would be carved and lit with a candle to guide your loved ones and ancestors home, which has evolved into our modern Jack-O-Lantern. This is the night when the veil between the worlds is at its thinnest- some even say it is lifted completely. Spirits- both benevolent and malign- are able to slip back into this world. If you honor your loved ones, perhaps set an altar with their favorite foods and something they gifted to you, there is a good chance they will come and visit you. If you are going out and about though, make sure to dress in something scary! This was done to frighten away the spirits and demons NOT wanted in your home! (Some say it is so they think you are already one of them, that way they will not take you back to the spirit realms with them!)
In time, by next year at least, I will put more details on each separate aspect of the stories and traditions, but I did not feel I should put an entire books worth of information on my first post!
Everyone be well and stay safe, go enjoy the magick sparkling in the air tonight, and by all means make some sparks yourself!