Mabon is the Autumn Equinox on the wheel of the year, occurring each year between the dates of September 20-24. Unlike our modern holidays, the Fall Equinox is not celebrated on a particular date every year. Rather it coincides with the astrological point in time wherein the length of day and night are approximately equal. This year, its date falls on September 22.
Mabon, symbolically represents the “in between” time, the transition from summer to fall. This is when the nature Gods and Goddesses of spring and summer, begin to slow down as the dark season approaches. Persephone has had her time in the sun, it is time for her descent back into the underworld. It is the time of the Fall Harvest, when vegetables and fruits are gathered and stored in preparation for the upcoming harsh winter months. The Goddess is beginning her transformation from fruitful mother to Crone. Soon the ground will be barren as nature withdraws into its “death” cycle. Seeds prepare for their buried slumber as they nestle into the earth to hibernate through the winter.
The primary theme surrounding Mabon is one of celebration and gratitude. The Fall Harvest has revealed its bounty and blessings as the result of the hard work of the previous months. In modern times, we can celebrate Mabon in a similar way. Look around you right now. Take this time to write down in a journal or a notepad, six or more blessings that you are thankful for. If you have a roof over your head, internet and food in the fridge, you are off a good start!
Fall is the time for hearty food. Root vegetables such as turnips, onions, carrots, potatoes, squash, pumpkins. Pomegranates, seeds and nuts, grains, corn, apples. Stews, breads, baked goods warm cooked cereals, etc. The scent of allspice and cinnamon fills the air. Think of comfort food and you have the idea. Have your fill, food is plentiful! All is well, the harvest was good this year.
Decorating one’s home, altar, and/or sacred space is a perfect way to connect with the seasons. Fall colors of orange, red, copper, maroon, gold, brown and yellow set the tone. Gourds, pumpkins, apples, nuts, berries, seeds and bread make wonderful adornments and offerings. If you work with deities, place a sigil, picture or statue on your altar to show respect and to connect with them.
Of course, no Mabon altar is complete without fire! Candles in the colors mentioned above will give your space a beautiful warm glow. Burn herbs, incense and spices in a cauldron or fire proof container to further enhance your connection with nature and spirit. Don’t feel you must limit yourself to just one day either. Celebrate Mabon for the entire month of September! You will enjoy the fall ambience and your Mabon altar will transition nicely with just a few tweaks as the season progresses into Samhain.
Here are a few ideas in how you can celebrate Mabon:
Eat “fall theme” foods and leave some as an offering on your altar: fresh apples, warm cider, pies, pastries, sweet potatoes, berries, seeds, warm cereals, pumpkin bread, etc.
Light candles: Candles in fall colors, and fall scented candles. For spells/meditations chime and taper candles in the appropriate colors will aid in focusing your intentions. You can dress them in oils and herbs as well to further charge them with your energy.
Declutter your space, donate items to charity. Physically clearing out your space, is helpful in assisting with clearing out emotional clutter as well. It goes a long way to ease feelings of anxiety. You will be able to enjoy yourself in a space that feels warm, peaceful and comforting.
Start a journal and/or magical grimoire. Get a journal that you especially connect with so that you will enjoy writing in it! These are wonderful for not just diary entries, but to write down your spells, recipes, magical correspondences, insights, etc. I especially love the large selection of high-quality journals offered at Indigo Moons. These are beautiful grimoires that can be passed down through generations.
Host a potluck dinner and share a hearty meal with family and/or friends.
Connect with others by attending fall events such as metaphysical & craft fairs, festivals, moon events, drum circles, farmers markets, etc.
Decorate your table with fresh in-season fall flowers.
Space/altar decorating ideas: Cornucopias, pinecones, seeds, nuts, autumn leaves, branches, naturally shed deer antlers, fall colored candles (of course), cauldron/incense burner(s), ears of dried corn, pumpkins, gourds, pomegranates, sunflowers, acorns, marigolds, pictures or figurines of “fall themed” animals such as owls, dogs, deer, stags, crows, ravens, blackbirds, foxes, cats, wolves, squirrels, etc. Pictures or statues of goddesses, gods, natural spirits, etc. Let your intuition guide you!
Herbs. The following are a few herb/spice suggestions that you can blend to make an incense mix, smudge blend or use them in a tea ball strainer in a bath for a ritual purification or aura cleanse: Cinnamon, clove, sweetgrass, pine, sage, myrrh, allspice, cedar, benzoin, sandalwood, lavender, red rose, dried apple, vanilla, patchouli, calendula (marigold), thistle, nutmeg, rosemary, mugwort, tobacco, thyme, chamomile, passionflower.
Crystals: Citrine, amber, tigers eye, red jasper, yellow agate, carnelian, botswana agate, honey calcite, garnet, clear quartz, mahogany obsidian, hematite, peridot, labradorite, bloodstone, yellow and/or green aventurine, black moonstone, a few pieces of black obsidian. These are just a few suggestions. If you feel drawn to a particular crystal, use it! As I always say, you do you.
Mabon is the time when we begin to slow down and reflect on the past year. We give thanks for the blessings and release the excess baggage. It’s a time for connection, celebration and magick! Why not integrate the Fall Equinox into your experience and enjoy all the wonderful gifts that this time of the year has to offer.
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