21 September 2007

Blessed Mabon!

Mabon - Autumn Equinox.

Today is a day of balance. The Oak King and the Holly King stare each other in the eye with equal ferocity as they vie for the hand of the Goddess. Since Summer Solstice, the Oak King's strength, has been waning but he has battled on against the Holly King for supremacy. But after today, the inevitable happens, and the Holly King begins his reign while his opponent retreats into the coming darkness.

But the Oak King's death isn't forever - he will rise again to fight another day. Such is the endless spiral of life and death... and life again. :)

"Mabon" (the name is actually a modern application - there wasn't much of a name for it in ancient culture) is one of the eight celestial milestones, and traditionally is observed Sept. 22 or 23. Many mark this holiday on the 21st because, I think, it's just easier to remember. :) The name may be derived from Mabon ap Modron, a figure in Welsh mythology, but its connection is unclear.

Mabon is a time of quiet reflection, of honoring the aging Oak King, and enjoying the fruits of your summer labors.

Mabon is the second of three harvest festivals, which begin with Lammas and end with Samhain. In historical Celtic culture, it wasn't considered one of the major holidays. Many of my Pagan and Wiccan friends don't do anything special for this day other than perhaps set up a harvest-themed altar.

Altars can be so lovely, especially if you have the room to do one outdoors. Here are some ideas for colors and objects you can include:

Symbols of Mabon:
Wine, gourds, pine cones, acorns, grains, corn, apples, pomegranates, vines such as ivy, dried seeds, and horns of plenty.

Herbs of Mabon:
Acorn, benzoin, ferns, grains, honeysuckle, marigold, milkweed, myrrh, passionflower, rose, sage, solomon's seal, tobacco, thistle, and vegetables.

Foods of Mabon:
Breads, nuts, apples, pomegranates, and vegetables such as potatoes, carrots, and onions.

Incense of Mabon:
Autumn Blend-benzoin, myrrh, and sage.

Colors of Mabon:
Red, orange, russet, maroon, brown, and gold.

Stones of Mabon:
Sapphire, lapis lazuli, and yellow agates.

Activities of Mabon:
Making wine, gathering dried herbs, plants, seeds and seed pods, walking in the woods, scattering offerings in harvested fields, offering libations to trees, adorning burial sites with leaves, acorns, and pine cones to honor those who have passed over.

Deities of Mabon:
Goddesses-Modron, Morgan, Epona, Persephone, Pamona and the Muses. Gods-Mabon, Thoth, Thor, Hermes, and The Green Man.

Enjoy the weekend!


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