Samhain 2018 Sabbat Box Theme Release • Witches' Sight

Samhain Sabbat Box Witches' Sight Sabbat Box Theme - Witch Subscription Box Pagan Subscription Box Wiccan Subscription Box


Boxes ship: 10/22 ~ As darkness begins to cast itself upon the land and the leaves fade to brown, we wait in anticipation for Samhain. The third and final harvest festival of the cycle which began in August with Lughnasadh. Samhain marks the end of summer and the time to begin preparation for the start of the dark half of the year. We recover our coats, jackets, and heavier clothes from the hidden parts of our closets and dressers. We begin to crave pumpkin spice lattes, apple pies, eggnog, and other warm filling foods. As the digression of daily warmth and light -that peaked months before during Litha- succumbs to the creeping presence of frigid darkness, winter’s glare looks on from the distant horizon...

2018 Samhain Sabbat Box - Witches' Sight Sabbat Box Theme - Subscription Box For Witches Wiccans and PagansAs pagans and witches, we know what changes, advantages, and adventures await! This year, Samhain occurs on Wednesday, October 31st which is the planetary day of Mercury. The moon (in Leo) will be waning and nearing its last quarter phase before becoming New on November 7th where it enters Scorpio. Happening on a Wednesday during a waning moon, Samhain establishes the perfect magickal environment to ensure that personal reflection and introspection become the ideal focus for any witches’ gathering on this particular night. As Mercury is directly related to communication, the ability to send and receive of messages will be heightened. With the added waning moon -being related to introspection and self-knowledge- make soul searching and discovering those much needed answers to life dwelling in the realms beyond an even more accessible reality.

Despite popular culture, we witches know that the name Samhain is pronounced ‘SOW-inn’ or ‘SOW-win’ and is a Gaelic word and festival that historically occurred from sunset on October 31st to the sunset of November 1st also making it known as November Eve in some circles. The name Samhain itself is popularly understood to mean summer’s end, as according to some individuals this understanding is derived from the spelling Samfuin, which can be broken down into sam ('summer') and fuin ('end'). It should be no surprise to anyone who is even slightly familiar with it, that Samhain is the ancient festival to which we owe for the modern existence of Halloween. As the commonly held beliefs and cultural practices associated with Halloween have been derived from Samhain’s own history and lore. It is, after all, a testament to Samhain’s enduring legacy and presence in the world.

2018 Samhain Sabbat Box - Witches' Sight Sabbat Box Theme - Subscription Box For Witches Wiccans and PagansAncient Irish Mythology reveals Samhain as being one of the four primary seasonal festivals where feasting, celebration, and games were common. It was also thought that during this time the veil -which existed between the worlds of the living and the dead- became thin and thus permitting spiritual crossover to happen between them. A concern that sparked the tradition of carving turnips -and later pumpkins- into jack-o-lanterns as well as mumming and guising to be utilized by the living to serve as protective measures while the dead and otherworldly beings roamed the haunted landscape to terrorize and visit the living.

A centuries old holiday, Samhain was historically observed throughout Ireland, Scotland, and the Isle of Man with variations of this celebration being recognized in certain areas of what is now referred to as the United Kingdom. Similar festivities could also be found in other parts of Europe during the time. For example, the people of Salerno, Italy held a similar festival honoring the dead until the practice itself was banned by the church in the fifteenth century. Yet, despite the sentimentalities and policies of the church, the festival and the idea of honoring the dead during the waning months of the years continue to influence and be adapted by various cultures and regions of the world centuries later. Halloween, All Saints Day, and the variations of Dia de Los Muertos (Day of the Dead) found throughout Mexico as well as in Central and South America are additional testaments to the significance of this time old tradition and its varied practices.

2018 Samhain Sabbat Box - Witches' Sight Sabbat Box Theme - Subscription Box For Witches Wiccans and Pagans

As modern witches we understand Samhain as functioning as one of the Greater Sabbats, being the contemporary collective name for the four primary seasonal festivals observed in Ancient Ireland. During this time of the year, the final harvest symbolizes the final death. The giving of life in anticipation of the cold and harsh winter months ahead. It is also, as the name indicates, a time of endings where we reap what we have sown and reflect upon those events that have brought us to this moment, and those efforts which will carry us through the coming months beyond the distant winter. 

So, upon this night of Samhain, as the dead return to the land to be among the living, we honor them and their memory through offerings of food and good drink, reverence, stories of who they once were, and tales of where they have been since their passing. We also embark on efforts of engagement with them through direct conversation and other means of contact. Communicating with the dead improves during this time because of the veil being thin. Therefore acts of divination such as scrying into a mirror or the light of a candle, or via ceromancy (interpreting the candle drippings dripped onto water) can be employed to seek answers from the beyond. As our own ancestors come forth, we welcome their return to offer their insights and blessings as we gaze between the worlds as only witches can. Happy Samhain and Blessed Be!

2018 Samhain Sabbat Box - Witches' Sight Sabbat Box Theme - Subscription Box For Witches Wiccans and Pagans


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About the author: Christopher Orapello

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Christopher Orapello is cohost of the pagan podcast Down at the Crossroads, a signature artist with Sacred Source, tarot enthusiast, and coauthor of Besom, Stang, and Sword: A Guide to Traditional Witchcraft, the Six-fold path, and the Hidden Landscape from Red Wheel / Weiser Books. He was born and raised in southern New Jersey where he currently lives with his sweetheart Tara-Love Maguire, two cats, and three snakes. He is a witch & animist, with a background in western occultism and ceremonial magick, and has been on his journey for over 20 years. He is also the cofounder of Blacktree Coven which is an animistic regional based system of Traditional Witchcraft, located in Southern New Jersey.

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