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Samhain
Halloween
October 31st

Traditions at Samhain
A time of reflection and remembrance but not of mourning! Those friends, relatives and familiars that have passed on. A plate of food is often left outside on the night of Samhain for the souls of the dead I often place on the plate a little of what I am having at my feast.
A candle in the window will help guide them to the lands of never ending summer, the candle is usually extinguished as part of the closing rite. An apple is often buried in hard packed earth to nourish the passed ones on their journey.

Many believe that this night is the best for communicating with the souls of the departed, as the boundary between our world and their world is thought to be narrowest at this point. However food for thought is, this practice would contradict it's self a little if you believe as many Wiccans do in reincarnation. Nonetheless I feel it may be an interesting point for discussion if you are working within a group structure like a coven.

Rites for Samhain
On the Alter place apples, pumpkins, squashes and other seasonally late foods, flowers, A symbol of the year, the eight spoke wheel for instance. I also place if needed pictures of the recently departed as an aid to remembrance.

Think of an aspect of your life in need of change and write it down, I use my spell paper for this, (things such as anger, bad habits, bad feelings, illness, guilt and worry). You will then burn this paper as part of the rite later to rid yourself of this negativity.

A necklace and/or crown of acorns, cones and dried flowers can be worn as part of your ceremonial attire.

Feast at Samhain
Root wines are very good at this time, especially ginger or wines containing ginger, an apple and ginger cider specially made for this feast is especially warming. Foods such as Beetroot, turnips, apples, nuts, grains, pumpkins and a tasty treat is ginger bread.

Any meat is good at a feast on this festival though make sure it is good quality and from a reputable source. One idea I especially like is to go and catch your own for this feast, this is as simple as going to the nearest river or sea and catching fish so long as they are humanely killed and adequately thanked.
Correspondence for Samhain

Herbs
African Violet, Agaric, Blackberry, Blueberry, Cinnamon, Coconut, Cuckoo-Flower, Cyclamen, Deerstongue, Devil's Bit, Elderflower, Garlic, Ginger, Grape, Hemp, Huckleberry, Kalbs Cross, Lavender, Liquorice, Mandrake, Mint, Myrrh, Nettle, Nightshade, Pineapple, Pomegranate, Raspberry, Rhubarb, Saffron, Sage, Sarsaparilla, Sassafras, Sloe, Star Anise, Strawberry, Sugar Cane, Tea, Tobacco, Vanilla, Witch Grass, Wolfsbane.

Oils
Cedar, Cinnamon, Eucalyptus, Ginger, Lavender, Lime, Mint, Myrrh, Orange, Sagebrush, Sandalwood.

Trees
Apple, Cedar, Cherry, Elder, Eucalyptus, Holly, Horse Chestnut, Lime, Orange, Palm-Date, Oak, Peach, Pear, Pine, Plum, Quince, Rowan, Sandalwood, Willow, Witch Hazel.

Stones
Amethyst, Asbestos, Beryl, Cat's Eye, Coal, Coral, Danburite, Fossil, Herkimer, Jet, Marble, Mother of Pearl, Obsidian, Petrified Wood, Pumice, Quartz, Rhodonite, Salt, Tourmaline-Pink.

Metals
Copper, Gold, Iron, Lead, Mercury, Meteorite, Silver, Steel, Tin.

Associated Colours
Black, Orange

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