If you're unfamiliar with the word and/or holiday, you are in the right place!
Samhain (pronounced sow-win) is a pagan religious festival originating from ancient Celtic tradition. In Gaelic, "Samhain" roughly translates to Summer's End, which is exactly what this festival and tradition is all about. Celebrating the end of the harvest season, and welcoming in the dark part of the year. It is held on November 1st, but technically starts the evening of October 31st as the Celtic day began and ended at sunset.
This festival is also where Halloween originated from, as Celts believe the veil between the physical word & the spirit world is at its thinnest, allowing more interaction than usual amongst ancestors, spirits & fairies.
Since the veil was believed to be breachable, villagers were known to dress up as animals and monsters as to scare off these spirits, as they feared being kidnapped or haunted by them.
As time continued on and the Middle Ages progressed, the Samhain tradition changed little by little. While fires were a original part of the festival to represent the sun, and portal for prayers, it was now used to protect families from fairies and witches.
The tradition of "dumb supper" started at this time as well. Dumb supper was a meal intended to be consumed by families and their passed ancestors, similar to Dia de los Muertos. Don't worry, dumb wasn't referring to the intelligence of the ancestors, but their inability to speak or be heard (aka silent guests).
Now, there is a WHOLE LOT of history behind the transition of Samhain and how it eventually turned into the version we all now know of today, Halloween. However, that is just too long of a story for me to tell on this little blog. So if you are interested take a peek here, and here.
Okay, if you're anything like me, after learning all this information I wanted to be a part of the fun and make my own rituals to participate in this tradition. Some of these ideas were found online, and others were just something I thought could be fun.
Leave a comment