I’ve always loved Oct 31st.
Halloween has been my favorite holiday since, well, probably forever. The reasons why keep changing and evolving though.
I’ve always loved the idea of dressing up, having fun and getting candy from strangers. As I got older, it was still an excuse for ridiculous costumes and festival style mayhem after festival season was over.
This year though, Halloween was feeling different for me. I wasn’t quite as stoked about the drunken debauchery side of things (being sober takes some of the fun of that away, and I get to dress up in crazy costumes with my hoop troupe all the time). I was still looking forward to the day but it seemed more nostalgic than anything. That is, until I participated in a Samhain ceremony online for the Priestess Process with Lisa Michaels. It completely re-framed my love for this time of year.
Samhain is a cross-quarter day on the wheel of the year between the Fall Equinox and Winter Solstice. It’s the third and last harvest festival day which honors the falling away of the old cycle and the beginning of the new. I’ve been consciously working with the wheel of the year since the Winter Solstice last year and this is the last major point on the wheel before coming back to that very magical starting place.
Through the ceremony, we were encouraged to honor our own harvest; to list all the blessings we’ve had this year, everything we are grateful for. My list was HUGE, and I could have gone on for many pages. I have so very much to be grateful for and so much of that was specifically because of the seeds of intention for the year that were planted on and after last winter solstice, Dec 21, 2012. Thinking about the magnificence of all that I’ve done was both awesome and humbling.
At Samhain, we’re marking the start of the darkest time of the year (in our Hemisphere at least). This is a time where the past and future meet and the veil between worlds are thinner. We have the chance to honor our ancestors, and to reflect on what has passed and what is to come.
This is a time where we step back into the womb or move into hibernation…. A perfect time to set an intention to gestate whatever you want to bring forth over the next year. I set my intention to gestate the book that I want to write about all the amazing things I’ve done this year, and to open my power to communicate my direct experience of divine love, bliss and joy effectively, so I can share it with the world.
It’s also a potent time to release whatever is no longer serving you, and as I did on the Aries full moon while I was out in Sedona, I release any old blocks, patterns of behavior and thought, any limiting beliefs that I have that no longer serve me, especially from all of my past lives.
I feel ready to retreat within to myself and really reflect deeply on the seeds I want to plant his year with the upcoming solstice. I woke up this morning (after about 9 hours of sleep) wishing I could go back to bed and stay asleep all day. In the ceremony today, Lisa gave us all permission to honor this hibernation time by sleeping more, relaxing and being gentle with ourselves. I really needed to hear that. I have trouble giving into my urges to be lazy… I feel better when I make them productive somehow, and I compromised this morning by allowing my shivasana after yoga to be a long, deep, half hour meditation under a fuzzy blanket.
I pulled a card from each element in my Elemental Forces of Creation Oracle and put together this unified field message for myself today: By letting go of what no longer serves me, I am holding space for my essence expression to have complete freedom, which is my path to perfect stewartship of all that is.
I encourage you to spend a part of today, in between taking kids trick or treating (or playing tricks on kids) to think about what seeds of creation you want to plant in your life next year and take those seeds deep into yourself as we hibernate during the darkest time of the year. I also encourage you to give yourself permission to rest and to be gentle with yourself. As the days grow colder and darker, spend a little extra time cuddled up under a warm blanket and know that it’s ok to slow down right now, to relax and enjoy before the days start getting longer again.