We have just moved past the full moon and last Sunday we celebrated the festival of Samhain with a powerful ritual here at An Cuige Ravensdale Dundalk. This ritual celebration of the Samhain festival prepares us to enter more fully into the energy of this season. The Celtic year begins at Samhain because the people who created the ancient calendar of this country believed, as all primal people do, that all new life emerges from the darkness… Samhain is also the most important festival in the calendar and yet it evokes deep fear in us modern human beings. The entrance into the dark time of the year is extremely challenging to us 21st century humans addicted as we are to light and outward activity. As we cross the Samhain gate the invitation is into Stillness, Inner Activity, Being and Surrender. Samhain is a time to reflect on our lives and to evaluate the different aspects of our lives during the past year, a time to give thanks for what has been achieved and to accept those things that were not completed and which must be left unfinished until the dark time of the year is over.
It is a time to look deep into the well of our own selves and see what must been seen maybe what shadow aspects of ourselves that we have avoided and perhaps devote time and energy to healing what needs to be healed.
At Samhain the veils between the worlds are thinner and we may have a greater connection with those who have passed over into the non-physical /spiritual realms
It is a wonderful time for us to connect in whatever way is appropriate for us with our Ancestors, those people (especially our family members) who lived on earth and who passed on to us the Gift of Life, We remember them with gratitude for their lives and their gifts including the gift of life and an acceptance and forgiveness of their fragility and weaknesses, We remember that we are the ancestors of the future generations and so we seek to heal our own wounds and weaknesses while on earth and consider what gifts and legacy we will leave for those who follow us.
It is in the dark season of Samhain that we dream our visions for the years ahead and plant the seeds for the future dreams we hold for our planet. In this dark season we commit to nurturing these seeds by deep reflections and commitment to the inner practices that will ensure their growth and the ability to emerge into right action when spring returns. Samhain is a season that demands we have faith, patience and endurance. Remember in this season we are held in the strong and wise embrace of the Cailleach aspect of the feminine energy which guides us through apparent death and dissolution and into a powerful rebirth when the dark season is over. This Cailleach power is reflected in this powerful poem by Brid mc Donnell
Stinging gales, trees denuded of foliage, and the damned
Look for a cave to live in. Winter ways
Over and over telling us to slow down, to hibernate
Homeward. With a passion and a letting go
Of youth and the careless days of brilliant dreams
And gentle caresses. Now, expectations spent,
On a road so long explored nearly reaching Eden
Never touched. Time to take stock of our lives
That very nearly touched the stars in the heavens
Full of mysteries ah, my dear old woman
I feel the wrinkles on the face of your wooden effigy.
Tell me your stories, Wise Brigid and I will tell you mine.
Full of many things we did this year,
Of action and reaction and the savage times
Behind us and ahead. I follow you into friendly darkness,
The deepest darkness of surrender.
The chink of light appears, the light that
Shines then slowly expands. Our liberation
Unleashed at that moment. My dear ones,
The beginning of that long journey called hope
And the cries of a Baby are heard again.
At this time on the planet we can become overwhelmed by the amount of dark news that greets us every day. Yet with this we are also offered opportunities to respond in ways where we become agents of transformation.
Darkness is always transformed by light and love so let us choose to share our light and our healing in both simple and profound ways as we go about our daily life.
My your inner light guide you this Samhain season.
Le Beannachtai, Dolores