Posted in Bealtaine Cottage

The Ancient Celtic Festival of Samhain

Another year around the sun is almost complete as the days draw me close to Samhain. The Ancient Festival of Samhain marked the last day of the Celtic year, with the rising of the sun on the following morning    illuminating the New Year  and the turning of the wheel. Samhain  Eve marked the Celtic New Year’s Eve. 

The Celts believed that night preceded day, thus all four annual festivals began at sunset on the evening before.  

There is no doubt that that this festival was the most important of the four Celtic Festivals. 

Samhain was a crucial time of year, loaded with symbolic significance for the pre-Christian Irish. 

As they watched the the sun descend into the western skies, the symbolic inference was that of a descent into the Otherworld.  This marked the thinning of the veil, as those within the Otherworld were free to roam the Earth.

The Sidhe, (fairies as we know them, for we know so little of them) have the power of shapeshifting are deemed able to walk among us, unknown and unrecognisable to mortals.

Alongside them travel our ancestors and other spirits we fail to recognise. It is a night filled with magic!

The descent of night will continue to weave its course right up to Yule and the Midwinter Solstice. The 21st of December is Midwinter as it marks the longest night…and, as I often reaffirm, the Celts were guided by the light. Each day that passed from the Midwinter and beginning of Yule was a lightening of the sky and the promise of Imbolc, Spring!

Here is a very interesting talk by Dr Jenny Butler, who I hold in very high esteem…

Blessings to you

Colette

I refuse to allow advertising on any of the Bealtaine Cottage social media platforms…so there is no revenue from these sites.

However, if you wish to support the ceaseless work of the Bealtaine Project, you will find a range of my books available from the Bealtaine Bookshop: https://bealtainecottage.com/2020/08/25/bealtaine-cottage-books-and/

Author:

16 years of Goddess Permaculture through the Bealtaine Project at Bealtaine Cottage, West of Ireland. Colette O'Neill is a writer, photographer, environmentalist and teacher who has devoted the past 16 years to turning 3 acres of derelict land into a woodland sanctuary for all life, planting over 1,100 trees in the process. Colette posts prolifically across Social Media, encouraging planting of trees and regeneration of Mother Earth. Her life energy is now devoted to the Great Goddess, Mother Earth!

17 thoughts on “The Ancient Celtic Festival of Samhain

  1. Happy birthday Colette and a blessed Samhain to you too – 🎂🧡 – glad to hear you speak of government reaction to the ‘pandemic’ on today’s YouTube video- for my part , I am very concerned for our young adults- who have lost , or had curtailed all the things that make life fun at their age – they have faced many restrictions since March , but for these 6 weeks , they have lost just about everything- social life,pubs,clubs, meals out , all sport except individual training outdoors 🤦‍♀️- although they can watch horse racing and greyhound racing on TV! They cannot legally get together in one another’s homes- most college courses are online so college now consists of the laptop in their bedrooms , while massively expensive college campuses sit idle, live gigs including comedy, dance,music and drama have all been gone since March- and all with scientifically documented minimal risk from the virus to the younger age group. Somehow or other , the draconian rules will have to be relaxed for our young people or the mental health and social issues down the line will be catastrophic.
    Samhain blessings on you , Colette and all of those in your online and real world community and our loved ones in these confusing times.🧡

    1. Hi Prudence, There are a few lectures from Dr Jenny, each one 6 or 7 mins long. If you put YouTube on autoplay they should pop up one after another.

  2. I love spending time with Bealtaine Cottage here and especially our walks in the wood. I am grateful for your work and play with Gaia Sophia. Blessings Abound!

  3. Many blessings to you on your birthday, Colette. Your beautiful garden is especially enchanting in autumn!
    Keep up your very important work on the importance of planting for the future!
    Susan Casamento

      1. This is a very unique and beautiful Samhain! The full moon and windy weather made it spectacular. We also had a windy, moody day here in Florida.
        Your work on the natural spring, stream bed and silt pond is amazing. Do you know if the previous owners were aware of the spring?
        I wondered if it was clogged due to the neglect of the land.
        There are so many Holy Wells in Ireland, that one has to wonder if this spring was known to the local people many years ago…
        Blessings!
        Susan Casamento

Your comments are welcome! I reply to every one!