Celebrating the Old Ways in New Times for September 2021
I write this on the day the plans I’ve had since 2009 have finally started to come to fruition, and it’s not entirely hit me just yet.
I’ve been trying to move out of the condo where we live since then. I even left my husband for nearly two years at one point because I wanted to leave so badly! After a disastrous encounter with one of the neighbors who is a dangerous criminal, we busted our backsides for a few months- and we got this place sold. We sacrificed our time, our money, and our energy- but we got it sold!
The money was transferred to our account today and the condo is officially somebody else’s. We have thirty-four days to move. The next thirty-four days are going to be like a blur and before we know it, we will be waking up in our new place.
Change and Autumn
September 21 is the Autumnal or September Equinox, and the day after our last day we are allowed here. An omen it’s timely to move? Absolutely. Many Pagans see Beltaine and Samhain as great times of transition, but when the seasons change is a great time, no matter which season it is.
The September Equinox ends Summer in the Northern Hemisphere and ends Winter in the Southern Hemisphere. So while some celebrate the end of hot days and beginning of the splendor of Fall, others are thankful the long, dark Winter is over, and they can begin to enjoy Spring. I will write about Fall, however, and Autumnal Equinox is one of the harvest celebrations for neo-pagans, the first being Lammas, and the final harvest celebration of the year being Samhain.
Autumnal Equinox, also called Mabon, was named after the god Mabon ap Modron by the illustrious Aiden Kelly. To read the interview I was lucky enough to do with him, read here: Celebrating the Old Ways in New Times – PaganPages.org
Mabon is a time when day and night are even, and soon, night will be longer than day. While some decry the shorter days, few complain about the cooler nights! Apple season is upon us, and plums and grapes are ripe for the picking, at least in my home State of Ohio! It is the start of “pumpkin spice season”, and cooler, crisp days will replace the wilting heat of Summer.
If you read the article with Aiden Kelly, you know he is the one who decided the people deserved the truth and published a copy of Gerald Gardner’s Book of Shadows! A copy of that is available free of charge on sacred-texts.com, and in that link is an Autumnal Equinox rite here: Gardnerian Book of Shadows: The Sabbat Rituals: Autumn Equinox (sacred-texts.com)
In it are beautiful words-
“Farewell, O Sun, ever returning light. The hidden god, who ever yet remains.
He departs to the land of youth, through the gates of death, to dwell enthroned,
the judge of gods and man. The horned leader of the hosts of air. Yet, even as stand
unseen about the circle the forms of the Mighty Lords of the Outer Spaces,. So dwelleth he,
‘the lord within ourselves’. So dwelleth he within the secret seed, the seed of new reaped grain,
the seed of flesh, hidden in the earth, the marvellous seed of the stars.
In him is life, and life is the light of men [John 1:4],’ that which was never born and never dies. Therefore
the Wicca weep not, but rejoice.”
So as Mabon is upon us, the harvest time is winding to a close, and more work is done bringing in the things we have sown. Before Samhain, things are harvested, processed, and stored. What is happening in your own life that echoes this? What have you worked hard on, and are finishing up? What things still need completed before you can rest, admiring the fruits of your labors and being proud of your good work? As I have included rituals from a past article, and Gardner’s ritual, I will not write a rite, but have a meditation instead.
There is more than one way to meditate. Some think of meditation of deep relaxation, and a level of that which is deeper than sleep. However, for this, the form of meditation I suggest entails conscious thought, focused on a topic. There are times to blank the mind or try and transcend consciousness, and other times to really think about a topic, or “meditate on it.”
Use paper for this so you can go back and read it. Stepping aside and coming back to see what you have written will be eye opening for this.
Think of a work in progress, one that you have been hammering away at for a while. Most especially if it’s one you are worried will never come to fruition. For some of us, we may lose confidence or become afraid we are beating our heads against a brick wall, working towards things that are not ours. Be as that may, if we all gave up every time our goals were not attained quickly, nobody would ever accomplish anything. You need to give yourself more credit, see how well you’ve done, and be confident you can finish. You’ve come this far, haven’t you?
Here’s what to do-
- Write down that goal.
- Make a list of all the things you have done, and all the efforts and work you have put forth to attain your goal.
- Then make a list of what is left to do.
- Finally, write down what you are hoping to gain from attainment of the goal.
- Sell the condo to buy a house.
- Renovations included painting the walls white, buying new windows and carpet, renovating both bathrooms and the kitchen. Decorating was done in a way that maximized the space, and strong art style was neutralized so buyers could picture their own things here. We did the sale and deposited the check. We invested the money and will rent for a while.
- We have to keep this place cleaned and well maintained until move out. Move in at the new place entails paying all move-in fees and first months’ rent, securing a storage unit, cleaning the new place FIRST and then taking a carload a day over before the big furniture move day. Then we hand over the keys and are gone!
- We want out of here due to the amount of criminal activity, so we are going to a safer neighborhood, and we want a house too. Renting temporarily is our steppingstone to the independence of a house. We want a garden, and a yard for the pets to play in. We want a garage and basement, guest room, and a man cave for my husband. We also want a newer property that does not need a lot of work, and we don’t want to have to renovate upon move in because maintenance on this older place has been trying and we are sick of all our spare time going into working on a property constantly. We want more time to travel, spend with loved ones, and do things we enjoy instead.
That’s my list! I wrote it down, and went away, then came back to see it again. It was a reminder of how much we have done, and realistically, we are about halfway to our goal. Not bad at all! How close are you to yours? How much is left to do?
Do you feel overwhelmed and like things will NEVER be done? Like you will NEVER reach your goal? I’ve felt that way before, but I am telling you- anything you really want to do is absolutely worth hanging in there and working for. Don’t just give up. You will meet your goal, you can do this, and you will accomplish this.
Don’t believe me? Look at what we accomplished. Even though I have dealt with chronic illness and crippling anxiety this whole time. We still did it. If we can, I bet you can too. Don’t let obstacles make you give up. You are in the midst of harvest, but the work isn’t done yet. As Wheel of the Year turns to Autumn, remember it’s not an end – or the new beginning just yet, but the time to use what’s left of the year to get the most out of your work.
Keep trying. Hang in there. You’ve got this.
Blessed Mabon, Blessed Work,
About the Author:
Saoirse is a practicing witch, and initiated Wiccan of an Eclectic Tradition.
A recovered Catholic, she was raised to believe in heaven and hell, that there is only one god, and only one way to believe. As she approached her late 20’s, little things started to show her this was all wrong. She was most inspired by the saying “God is too big to fit into one religion” and after a heated exchange with the then associate pastor of the last Xtian church she attended, she finally realized she was in no way Xtian, and decided to move on to see where she could find her spiritual home.
Her homecoming to her Path was after many years of being called to The Old Ways and the Goddess, and happened in Phoenix, Arizona. She really did rise from her own ashes!
Upon returning to Ohio, she thought Chaos Magic was the answer, and soon discovered it was actually Wicca. She was blessed with a marvelous mentor, Lord Shadow, and started a Magical Discussion Group at local Metaphysical Shop Fly By Night. The group was later dubbed A Gathering of Paths. For a few years, this group met, discussed, did rituals, fellowship, and volunteering together, and even marched as a Pagan group with members of other groups at the local gay Pride Parade for eight years.
All the while, she continued studying with her mentor, and is still studying for Third Degree, making it to Second Degree thus far.
She is a gifted tarot reader, spellworker, teacher, and was even a resident Witch at a Westerville place dubbed The Parlor for a time.
Aside from her magical practice, she is a crocheter, beader, painter, and a good cook. She has been a clown and children’s entertainer, a Nursing Home Activities Professional, a Cavern Tour Guide, a Retail Cashier, and a reader in local shops. Her college degree is a BA in English Writing. She tried her hand at both singing and playing bagpipes, and…well…let’s just say her gifts lie elsewhere! She loves gardening, reading, antiques, time with friends and soul kin, and lots and lots of glorious color bedecking her small home!
On the encouragement of a loved one several years back, she searched for a publication to write for, and is right at home at PaganPagesOrg.
She is currently residing in Central Ohio with her husband, and furbabies.
Saoirse can be contacted at [email protected].