Today I celebrated Mabon, or, the autumn equinox. It's a Pagan tradition, celebrating the moment that day and night are equals. It's a moment of reflection, and of preparing for the dark times ahead, but it's also a harvest celebration, so food plays a big part in it!
I planned on celebrating with a group of others, but unfortunately the meeting was cancelled so I had to think of something myself.
I settled with a small made-up ritual in the nearby park and took some pictures afterwards, for fun and for my blog!
I set up a small circle with a wooden plate filled with vegetables in front of me. I wanted to buy specific ones but I didn't have time to so I just grabbed some stuff I had lying in my fridge.
Around me I put four plates with something to represent the four elements - water for water, stones for earth, a candle for fire and incense for air.
I started out with a small thank you to the world. I'm really happy that things have gone better financially this year and I'm thankful that I've always had enough to eat. I was very poor last year when I lost my job and I can clearly envision the coin counting and having to live off as little as possible. I'm thankful that I don't have to do that anymore. The basket of vegetables therefore symbolizes the plenty that I've had this year and the plenties that are hopefully to come.
Mabon is also a time of reflection. The day and night are equals and it's time to prepare for the dark times that come ahead. It's difficult for me. I have always been very sensitive to winter depressions and now that this year has been such a wonderful year of personal growth, I'm a bit afraid to look forward to the winter.
However, light cannot exist without dark and in order to get better and overcome my personal fears and anxieties I will have to embrace my dark side as well as my light side. That is also the reason I'm wearing a black dress (which is by Black Milk Clothing). It also made me think about what my therapist said. She advised me to start 'collecting nuts' for the winter and made a reference to squirrels, who collect their food in a time of plenty to save for winter. I have been trying to 'collect' my own nuts to survive the winter, in a form of long term creative projects that will keep me busy in the dark days.
I like to dress up for a celebration, just like I like to dress up every day. I like to wear a beautiful but comfortable dress (comfort is a must when meditating!) and decorate my hair with colours of the season. I'm wearing a triskilian on my forehead to symbolize the sun and to counter the blackness of my dress (which is not even entirely black but has a sheer burnt out design!). No dark is truly dark, and no light is truly light.
After the ritual, of course, food! Let's not forget that Mabon is also a harvest celebration. I made a raw vegan salad with kale, baby tomatoes, avocado, almonds and various seeds. I finished the ritual by eating it in the circle and then cleaning everything up. As a final thing, I scattered some seeds, to symbolize the collecting of the nuts and giving some of them back to nature.
I'd like to finish this by saying: Nature is my religion.