Sunday, September 23, 2007


Today is the autumnal equinox. An equinox is when the Sun is directly above the equator, and day and night are nearly of the same length.

The Neopagan/Wiccan festival Mabon is celebrated on this day. It is also called Harvest Home, The Feast of the Ingathering or Harvest End.

The festival is not an authentic ancient festival in name or date. The name may derive from Mabon ap Modron, a character from Welsh mythology. The name "Mabon" wasn't used for the festival until the 1970s, when it was made up for a religious studies project. Apparently the name was chosen to impart a more authentic-sounding "Celtic" feel to the event. It is used much more in America than Britain.

It is a ritual of thanksgiving for the fruits of the earth and a recognition of the need to share them to secure the blessings of the Goddess and God during the winter months. The Autumn Equinox divides the day and night equally, so respect is paid to the coming dark and thanks given to the waning sunlight. It is time to reap what has been sewn and give thanks for the harvest and the bounty.

Druids call this celebration Mea'n Fo'mhair and honor the The Green Man, the God of the Forest, by offering libations (ciders, wines, herbs and fertilizers) to trees. Wiccans celebrate the aging Goddess as she passes from Mother to Crone, and her consort the God as he prepares for death and re-birth.


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