I always love connecting with my ancestors and talk with them almost daily. I am very grateful to have the growing connection with them that I do and I often find myself wondering how I can pay tribute more regularly and honor them, giving them thanks for watching over me and helping me get through day to day life. We are coming up on the time of year that allows us to do just that. Gratitude is one of the leading principles in my spirituality practice, and just as I would thank my living family for anything they do for me, it is just as important to thank the dead.
Samhain runs from October 31st through the end of the day on November 1st. The word Samhain is Gaelic for “summer’s end.” It is the end of the harvest season and the beginning of the coldest and darkest time of year. The time leading up to Samhain is when the veil between the physical and spiritual realms is the thinnest, making communication with the spirit world and our ancestors easier and more common. Definitely take advantage of this time to grow in your practice and receive the guidance you seek from your spirit guides and ancestors, from manifesting to advice, signs, and connecting through tarot!
There are many ways we can honor and give thanks to our ancestors during this time: One of my favorites is to create an altar space dedicated to them – this can be one or more ancestors, it is your choice. The special space that you dedicated should be cleansed. You can decorate this space with photos, flowers and plants, trinkets, and homemade offerings. Offerings can consist of crafts you make that you think this person would like, items that represent their personality or favorite things, or even a glass of their favorite drink left overnight. You can write a letter, leaving it out on the altar for as long as you see fit through Samhain, and when you are finished you can burn it or stash it away as memorabilia. Your ritual can consist of one or many of these things – making it unique for your ancestors is what makes it special.
One of my friends recently introduced me to a new idea – a dead supper. You cook a meal and set out an extra place for your ancestor. Serve the plate with silverware and a drink just like you do for yourself. Invite your ancestor for dinner, and eat in silence. Silence is key as we are here to spend time with a spiritual being. When you are finished with your meal and you feel your dinner is complete, dispose of the other setting. Do not eat it.
Because Samhain is also a time to give thanks for the harvest that summer brought, don’t forget to connect with nature. You can go for a hike or stroll in the park, visit a body of water, or simply sit in your back yard and ground yourself. Visiting a cemetery is also a good way to combine both the nature aspect as well as spending time with the deceased. You can also have a fire if you have access to do so, and it is always a good idea to invite your ancestors along for any of these activities. Thank the earth and Mother Nature!
I will be offering a special Samhain Tarot Reading now through October 30th. If interested, please contact me via my Contact page, on Instagram at @themodernmetaphysical, or through my Facebook page, The Modern Metaphysical. And as always, I would love to hear how you celebrate Samhain, whether you are new to this celebration or if you have been practicing for years, and what you look forward to and love most about this special time.