Monday, October 30, 2006

samhain altars

Samhain (pronounced sow-en) is also known as the witches' New Year. We pagans get the best of everything - celebrating the seasons, the Old Ways, and of course doing the mainstream bits as well. Here's my altar for Samhain. It's really more like a Day of the Dead slant - it's a time to honor our beloved ancestors, those who paved the way for us, those who made us who we are. We cherish their memory through pictures, stories, and gifts. I've assembled some treasured items to help my remember those dear to my heart who have gone ahead.
First and foremost is my father, Roaul. He died of leukemia three years ago. They gave him three months to live...he only lasted six weeks. I like that I have pictures of him as a boy, a high school senior, and also as a handsome grown man. My dad was an elementary school principal for over thirty years. He was very well liked, firm but fair. Our family dinners were made special by his entertaining stories of teachers and students. He had a great laugh.

The little picture in front is me with my maternal great grandparents. I'm holding out my hand in a kind of sweet gesture...perhaps someone has asked me to show them something. This picture is on top of a card from my grandmother...."to my sweet, sweet granddaughter. I love you so much." I loved her too.

The little angel box holds Angel Cards and was shellacked long ago by my sister.

Also on the altar are pictures painted by my birth dad, who died when he was very young. Images of my guru, Paramahansa Yogananda, who was instrumental in bringing yoga to America. Rudraksha beads, a skull rattle, and my Tarot cards. Samhain is a great time to do divination.

And on a lighter note, the kitchen altar. Most of these little trinkets were gifts from students or from my mom, who used to work in a cute little boutique in Pacific Grove. At night we light all the candles....
Have a safe Halloween and a spooky New Year!


Blogger LauraJ said...

I LOVE this!! I didn't know you were Wiccan. You learn something new about someone everyday!! I like the idea of honoring our loved one's who passed before us.
Happy Halloween to you and yours too!!
Stay Safe!!

8:41 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This is a such a nice gesture, nice way to dedication to our love one! We have the similar practice in our culture as well.

happy halloween

secret pal 9

6:47 PM  
Blogger Bean said...

Again you inspire me! I have been interested in Wicca for a long time, but when I first decided to study it, I wasn't quite ready to devote my time. I am slowly moving onto my desired path and I know the time is right for me! So out come the books and the altars etc. Everything happens for a reason, and I think I came across your blog for a little inspiration!! Thank you!
Happy Halloween!!

7:24 PM  

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