Today is the Autumnal Equinox when night and day are exactly at equal length. It is also one of the eight Pagan Sabbats, Mabon.
Mabon is mainly a harvest festival, it is the last harvest before winter comes. In old times it would be a time to start stocking up on fruit, wheat, corn, and grain for the winter months ahead.
This is a time of transformation. The great wheel has turned as we pass into a new season and say goodbye to Summer. The earth is going through a major shift, where darkness will now start to take over light as the nights get longer and days get shorter. Cold will start to take over warmth and death will start to take over life as plants wilt and trees start to lose their leaves, and fields become barren. Wild animals will start to gather food for the winter months and hibernate.
Mabon is a time of thanksgiving. We thank the God and Goddess for all that we have and thank them for the harvest. The sap of trees returns to their roots deep in the earth, changing the green of summer to the fire of autumn, to the flaming reds, oranges, and golds. We are returning to the dark from whence we came.
The Goddess is radiant as Harvest Queen and the God finally dies with his gift of pure love with the cutting of the last grain. He will descend into the underworld, his last day on earth will be Samhain when a gate will open between our world and the underworld. We enjoy the abundance of fruit and vegetables at this time. We should adorn our altars with pumpkins, nuts, corn, wheat, squash, fruits, and other seasonal fair and any falling leaves or acorns we may find to honor the season and to thank the waning Sun for the wealth of harvest bestowed upon us.
Mabon is also a transition for the Triple Goddess as she goes from her mother phase to her crone phase, her final phase from her journey of the year.
The Autumnal Equinox is a time of balance, of both light and dark, it is a time to look within ourselves and balance our thoughts and emotions, and to find balance in our lives. To embrace our dark and our light equally, as one cannot exist without the other. It is when we stop and relax and enjoy the fruits of our personal harvests, whether they be from toiling in our gardens, working at our jobs, raising our families, or just coping with the hustle and bustle of everyday life.
May your Mabon be memorable, and your hearts and spirits be filled to overflowing.
Full written credit goes to Wicca Teachings. Full editing credit goes to Lisa Marino.
Photo credit: Various.