Posted in Bealtaine Cottage, celebrations, Celtic Mythology, Celts, Country Living, Folklore, Gaia, Inspiration, Ireland, Permaculture, Samhain, Spirituality

The Night of the Thin Veil

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September has been an extraordinary month of sun and still air, little has moved and time has appeared to stand still. www.bealtainecottage.comSunrises and sunsets have been spectacular.

www.bealtainecottage.comIndeed, September 2013 will be remembered here in Ireland for the “Indian Summer,” often promised and rarely received!

www.bealtainecottage.comTomorrow is the last day of September.

We are now past equal day and night and on the descent to Samhain and the night of the “thin veil”…

www.bealtainecottage.comI have spent as much time outdoors as possible, walking and watching the light play with the changing seasons.

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The Celts believed in the sacredness of times and places “in between”.

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The places, “in-between,”  the shore and land, thresholds, night and day, life and death.

The place between life and death was honoured in the form of a wake, for the soul took time to depart and journey onwards.

www.bealtainecottage.comBealtaine and Samhain are in-between times, when time stands still, as transition occurs.

Bealtaine is the transition to summer and Samhain the passing into winter.

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‘Tis a pity that Samhain has been so commercialized, into the freak show of Halloween…it is not to be tolerated! Samhain is a lovely time of remembering and honouring the ancestors and all those who have passed from our lives during the year.

www.bealtainecottage.comI hope you take the time to celebrate with a gathering of family, friends, feast and fire…reclaiming our precious traditions from the corporate nonsense of plastic pollution and Hollywood freak show!

(All photos today were taken by me, in the local area around Bealtaine Cottage.)

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Blessings

Colette

Posted in Abundance, Autumn, Bees, Birds, Cats, Cottage, Country Living, Garden, Gardens, Inspiration, Ireland, Life, Organic Garden, Permaculture, photography, Spirituality, Thoughts, Uncategorized, Wildlife

The Quickening

Autumn 2013 at Bealtaine Cottage 002As we approach the Equinox, the sun appears strong and bright in the morning sky, a clear sky at that, gathering together the ingredients for a perfect Autumn day.

Autumn 2013 at Bealtaine Cottage 001A day for walking, stopping often and observing the quickening of change, in all that grows and flies.

I watched the Swallows flying high in the clear sky above the cottage…one of many preludes to the incredible migratory flight to Africa.

I looked down, earthwards and noticed the Sedum opening clusters of pink, one of the last meals of the year for the bees.

All is change.

Autumn 2013 at Bealtaine Cottage 003All is good, on this calm bright morning.

Tomatoes slowly ripen here on the veranda.

Thank you Tara Angell from New York, for the amazing little seeds these grew from.

Autumn 2013 at Bealtaine Cottage 008They’re all over the garden and have become more Irish than the Irish as the saying goes!

Autumn 2013 at Bealtaine Cottage 005The spiders spin and weave their magic all over the gardens too.

I hear people say, “Where has the summer gone…is time speeding up?”

Autumn 2013 at Bealtaine Cottage 007Perhaps it is, but my body is more and more in tune with the seasons and time seems almost irrelevant.

Autumn 2013 at Bealtaine Cottage 009The morning merges into afternoon and the quickening of autumn  reveals itself in the darker evening…yet to come!

Autumn 2013 at Bealtaine Cottage 011If time is the measuring stick of our existence, then we are not living in the present, in the here and now.

Autumn 2013 at Bealtaine Cottage 012I often reflect on these pictures I take, and ask myself, “What was I feeling then, at that moment?”

Autumn 2013 at Bealtaine Cottage 015The clock was a horrid invention really…it ticks and measures and makes us panic and fret!

Today, I don’t need a clock or a calendar…I smell the season, I see the time…it’s morning, for the sun shines in from the east!

Autumn 2013 at Bealtaine Cottage 016The light has weakened and changed, the summer is behind us.

Flowers on the Buddleia have turned into heavy droplets of seeds for the birds to feast their way through winter.

Autumn 2013 at Bealtaine Cottage 017Pumpkins stand to attention!

Autumn 2013 at Bealtaine Cottage 019Masses of red berries assure the birds of a kind over-wintering at Bealtaine Cottage, where Nature has bestowed abundance on all living creatures.

Autumn 2013 at Bealtaine Cottage 020The lacy cobwebs dance in the morning sun.

Autumn 2013 at Bealtaine Cottage 021And the mellowing leaves of the Ribes reflect in the mirror stillness of the water barrel.

Autumn 2013 at Bealtaine Cottage 024Time to light the stove and boil the kettle…this is a morning, where stepping back outside, with a mug of tea, seems the only really sensible course of action to take!

Autumn 2013 at Bealtaine Cottage 025The light beckons…

Autumn 2013 at Bealtaine Cottage 031Missy observes from under the table…

Autumn 2013 at Bealtaine Cottage 029And I pass through the cottage to return to the gardens…

Posted in Autumn, celebrations, Celtic Mythology, Celts, Country Living, Culture, Earth, Fairies, Folklore, History, Inspiration, Ireland, Permaculture, Poetry, Samhain, Spirituality, Thoughts

A Time of Early Shadows

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Autumn is a time of early shadows as the season of summer passes over.

Scents of woodsmoke and compost fill the air.

Samhain is close.

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The Celts divided the year into two parts…the light and the dark.

Samhain is the crossover point into the dark.

Seamus Heaney wrote a wonderful collection of poetry entitled, “Into The Dark.”

One of my favourite reads at this time of the year.

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Poetry is like that…it can be turned over again and again, extracted from the past into the present and enjoyed afresh.

The turning of the year towards the light is heralded in the Feast of Bealtaine.

www.bealtainecottage.com 054Bealtaine also means, “May,” in Irish and is why I named this cottage Bealtaine Cottage…for it was in May I first spied it!

Bealtaine celebrates the beginning of summer as we turn towards the light and short shadows.

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In Ireland the Tribes gathered for Samhain, at the ritual centres across the land to celebrate this most important festival of the year.

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It was a time to reconnect with the past, a time of early shadows and light veils of separation.

A time of magic.