Daily Feng Shui News for Oct. 31 – ‘Happy Halloween’

BOO! Happy Halloween! Today, make sure that your little trick or treaters eat something nutritious before heading out for the evening haunt. They’ll be exciting thinking about their bounty and who they will play tricks on, but they need something to offset the eventual sugar overload. Sugar on an empty stomach can cause bad headaches and moods, so a piece of chicken or even some celery and carrots will keep them happy on Halloween.

By Ellen Whitehurst for Astrology.com

How The Various Astrology Signs Go Trick-or-Treating

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How The Various Astrology Signs Go Trick-or-Treating

Aries pushes the others aside to get to the door first.

Taurus will only eat the finest of Swiss chocolates.

Gemini goes around the neighborhood once, changes costumes and goes around again.

Cancer stays at home and gives candy to the other trick-or-treaters.

Leos plan their costume for months, then won’t go out because someone else had the same idea.

Virgo wears a neatly-pressed suit and tells everyone they’re a bookkeeper.

Libra is still standing in front of the closet trying to decide on a costume.

Scorpio isn’t in it for the candy.

Sagittarius will manage to wander to the next town.

Capricorn makes a list of all the houses that give good candy and the optimal route to take.

Aquarius builds the costume out of spare flashlights and spends all night tinkering when it shorts.

Pisces skips the whole thing to compose poetry to the Moon.

Funniest Jokes On The Internet

 

The Sacredness of Halloween

The Sacredness of Halloween

Author:   Tut 

One of my Pagan friends has the same admonition for us each October. “Don’t try to contact me on Samhain, ” he informs, “I’ll be busy.” Of course, by “busy” he means that he’ll be deep in the midst of a self-imposed seclusion, fasting, meditating and performing solitary rites from sunup on October 31st to more or less sunup on November 1st. As a fellow Solitary Pagan, albeit of a different path, I can respect that. I also know members of an area coven that observe Samhain communally, going to the cemeteries to clean graves and make offerings or holding a silent supper before observing their Sabbat. I have to applaud them for their efforts as well. Even as an Egyptian Pagan, I consider October 31st a holy day, and I typically observe the Osiris Mysteries as close to that date as possible.

But I find one element of the sacred that still seems overlooked by both Solitaries and covens each October 31st. In our efforts as Pagans to mark the solemnity and sanctity of Samhain, we miss what probably made the day so hallowed and special for so many of us in the first place: dressing up, trick-or-treating, and celebrating all things spooky. In other words, we miss the importance of celebrating Halloween.

As a kid, I loved Halloween. Sure, Christmas was when I got presents and time off from school, but Halloween was a time when my creativity and imagination were allowed to soar. What am I going to be for Halloween? was a question I typically started asking myself around late August or early September, and by the time I was ten I was building my own costumes. Ironically, the Irish in my heritage was perhaps better celebrated through Halloween than it was through Saint Patrick’s Day. As a very young child, my mother told me the story of Jack and his Jack o’ Lantern while we carved pumpkins or colored paper decorations, and on occasion she would share ghost stories that her father had told her. The decorations we put up, combined with my own vivid imaginings of her stories, painted dark yet intriguing mental images of primeval forests stalked by fantastical creatures and lonely moonlit moors traversed by wandering souls.

Whether these images came from some collective inherited subconscious reaching back to our distant forbears in Ireland or from my own super-active brain, I will never know, but I still see them in my mind every October as I watch the sun go down and the full moon rise. Another source of inspiration are the handful of decorations and other items I inherited directly from family members: my uncle’s black light, my mother’s pack of Gypsy Witch Tarot Cards (which by this point must be at least forty years old) , my paternal grandmother’s tabletop decoration of a black cat on a tombstone (I’ve had offers from friends to buy it, but it’s not for sale) , and most especially the cassette dub my late grandfather made for me from his old record of Halloween sound effects, complete with a playlist in his own handwriting. While he was alive, my maternal grandfather instilled in me a love of technical toys, especially recording and sound equipment, which carried over into my Halloween decorations–especially the screaming doormats I became notorious for in college!

From the general Pagan perspective Samhain, of course, is a time of transition when the Corn King dies and enters the Underworld (with variations depending on tradition) . It is a time to honor the dead, and an opportunity for divination because the veil between worlds is at its thinnest. The focus is on death, aging, and mortality, much the antithesis of childhood revelry. But when I think back to those Irish forbears–and probably our Welsh ancestors as well–observing the onset of winter, huddled around a bonfire as darkness closed around them and cries of wild animals echoed through the distant hills, I think of grandparents telling their grandchildren those same stories I heard about Jack with his lantern, the Will o’ the Wisp, the Banshee, and probably more I would never hear.

I think of children wrapping themselves tighter in Grandpa’s cloak, staring with wide eyes of wonder at the curtains of shadows beyond the fire, experiencing for the first time that thrill of a good ghost story, and the eternal question, Oh, that’s not real–is it?. Imagination is a sacred gift from the Gods Themselves, the more so when it is handed down from one generation to the next. The Irish and Anglo-Saxons that travelled from their native lands to North America passed down those stories, those characters, and that love of a good fright, regardless of whether they called it Samhain or Halloween, and that lively spirit lives on in our modern holiday.

Indeed, today Halloween is considered a major “kid” holiday, driving a multi-million-dollar industry fed every year by the young and young at heart. And as we all know, Halloween has no shortage of detractors among the evangelical Christian community who denounce it as a “devil’s holiday”–forgetting, of course, that it has long been celebrated as a Catholic holiday, whence it earned the name All Hallow’s Eve. The Mexican communities who observe Dia De Los Muertes two days later are no less devout in their Catholicism. But as we Pagans strive to reclaim the Samhain heritage of October 31st, establishing its legitimacy as a sacred occasion and not a night of “devil worship”, lost in the debate and dogma is the holiday’s golden opportunity to enhance the bond between generations, something just as spiritual and important as its ritual aspect.

A coven member once told me that children are not allowed at their Samhain rituals, owing to the dark and serious tone required to participate. How, then, are the next generation of Wiccans and Pagans going to identify with Samhain, especially if their Pagan parents are spending all their time observing the Sabbat for themselves? How are kids today to understand trick-or-treating, costumes and other traditions surrounding Halloween–and its Celtic prototype? Are we going to fill their heads with ideas of October 31st as Samhain, the misunderstood holy day they’re expected to defend against ignorant schoolmates but wait until they’re older to participate in; or as Halloween and Samhain, a time of year that has something for everyone to enjoy?

For my own part, I’m already planning how I will decorate for this year’s trick-or-treaters; I had better, considering I’ve gained a neighborhood reputation for having the best candy! I take joy in observing Halloween with the neighborhood kids, regardless of their religious affiliation–besides, if their parents opposed Halloween, chances are they wouldn’t be coming to my door (unless they snuck out to do so, in which case who am I to discourage defiance…?) . By doing so, I contribute a tiny part of my own heritage, passed down through the ages, to the next generation so that it won’t one day die with me.

I will have plenty of time to observe the Osiris Mysteries in private after the trick-or-treaters have all gone to bed. But whenever the time comes that I have others observing the Osiris feast with me, I will make sure that they know ahead of time to pitch in for the trick-or-treating first. A child’s imagination is just as sacred as any service, and it should be celebrated accordingly.

A Little Humor for Your Day – Top Reason Trick-or-Treat is Better Than Sex

The Top 10 Reasons Why Trick-or-Treating Is Better Than Sex

10. You are guaranteed to get at least a little something in the sack.

9.  If you get tired, you can wait 10 minutes and go at it again.

8.  The uglier you look, the easier it is to get some.

7.  You don’t have to compliment the person who gives it to you.

6.  It’s OK if the person you’re with fantasizes that you are someone else because, well…, you are.

5.  Forty years from now, you’ll still enjoy candy.

4.  If you don’t like what you get, you can always go next door.

3.  It doesn’t matter if the kids hear ya moaning and groaning.

2.  Less guilt the morning after.

AND THE NUMBER ONE REASON IS….

You can do the whole neighborhood!

 

Turok’s Cabana

Halloween: The Past in the Present

Halloween: The Past in the Present
by Elspeth Sapphire

The days are shortening and dark comes early.  There is a certain crispness to the air as we stroll the streets.  Before long, the leaves are turning bright colors, only to slowly drift down to cover yards and streets.

Yes, autumn is here.

And with autumn comes a holiday enjoyed by both old and young…Halloween.

What is the appeal of this night?  Why do we find people ranging from infants to grandparents donning costumes and for one night forgetting the mundane?

Halloween, or Samhain to the Pagans, has caught the imagination of people throughout the ages.  From the ancient rituals honoring the dead to our modern custom of trick or treating, this one night is our time to put aside any fear of the dark and embrace any that walk there as welcome. Halloween costumes have become a huge part of the tradition of Halloween now as well to remind people what we used to fear and to have a little fun with it.

The ancients chose this time of year to celebrate the dead. The harvests were done and the fields laid empty.  The days of sun were at a end and the days of dark were beginning.  What better time to celebrate the powers of darkness.

This was not a celebration of fear; not always has darkness equaled fear.  Instead for those who believed in rebirth, it was a time to reach and touch those beliefs.  Just as the fields now laid bare, they would flower again in the spring.  And so it was with us, dying only to be reborn.

So many of our Halloween customs can be traced to the past and the habits of our ancestors.  Each time I look at the jack-o- lanterns shining with devilish grins, I can picture the original lanterns.  Turnips were hollowed out and candles placed inside to protect them from the wind.  These lanterns were placed on window sills to guide the dead back to their kin.

Since the apple harvest was celebrated at this same time, apples often played an important place in the festivals.  When you bob for apples or dangle apples on strings, you are walking in the footsteps of other people and other times.

What would Halloween be without costumes and masks?  Yet, have many of us wondered why we so enjoying the wearing of costumes? Dressing up frees us from the ties of our everyday life.  For a brief moment of time, we become a princess or an Indian or a cartoon character.  This gives us a freedom of action that we normally wouldn’t have.

Masks have also long been associated with death and the gods. Was early man trying to understand death when he put on a mask of a dead one? Perhaps, donning a mask could put us in touch with the gods themselves.

The black cat, familiar to many a storybook witch, was priced because cats could sense the dead.  They could be used as a kind of early warning system.  Why black cats?  What better color for this time when the darkness rules?

Every where I look, I come face to face with the stereotyped image of the witch.  Wicked or not, they all looked alike: greenish skin, a wart, misshapened face, dressed all in black. In these days of striving for the politically correct, many are trying to remove this image from Halloween celebrations.  I guess they don’t see what I do.  I look at the Halloween witches and remember pictures of the dark Goddess, dressed in black and with her high pointed hat.  She would wait at the crossroads to guide the dead to their rest until the time of rebirth.  Evil?  I don’t believe so, anymore than I believe death is evil.  Instead it is one more symbol that has passed down through the years to spice October 31st.

Just look around.  We are surrounded by symbols of the past that we take for granted.  The brooms the witches rode.  The cauldrons that bubbled with potions vile.  Even trick or treating could be traced back to Celts who went house to house collecting treats of apples.

It has been truly said that there is nothing new under the sun. However, this doesn’t have to hinder our enjoyment.  On Halloween night, you can find me walking the night.  Without fear, I will travel, listening to the laughter of the children, as I go back to another time and place.

HALLOWS BLESSING

HALLOWS BLESSING

To those whose feet are stilled
And those who laugh with us no more
To you we say, our love was with you here
And goes with you hence
To that place where you rest and revel.

May the dark Lord and sweet Lady
Guide your feet along the rocky paths
To the place where all is fresh and green
And lover, friends and ancestors wait
With open arms to greet you.
Go in peace, and with our blessing
Be rested and return when the Lady deems it fit
With the countless turns of the Great Wheel
We shall miss you
We shall meet you again in the green places of Her domain.