In every ending, there is a beginning. Welcome to the season of the witch – a time for magic, mystery, darkness, and death. It may sound somber and even a bit frightening. But, it is in the darkness where all things are created. Where seeds are planted. Where potential lies. Where deep wisdom is found. With nothing but darkness + mystery, we must rely on our own intuition. We can do nothing but, wait, listen, observe, and anchor ourselves. All is uncertain. And, while that may be completely fucking uncomfortable, it also means that this is the space, this is time, when anything is possible.
This is also the season of release + surrender. And that’s exactly what is needed to begin a soul season like this.
To begin a new journey, a new way of living in rhythm with the seasons, flowing with nature, we need to let our old ways die. We are called down into the darkest half of the year so that we can harvest, prepare, connect, root, rest, wait, listen, and intuit.
Before we can begin to take action, we must follow the messages of autumn + winter. So we descend down into the season of the witch to harvest our own wisdom medicine. In the darkness of this season, we can discover our transcendent wisdom. And when we find this bliss, then we have found our way, our medicine, our guide, our myth, our spirituality, our gift to the world.
The Rhythms of Nature
The medicine of the earth
Darkness falls and there is a chill in the air. Ever so slowly the leaves begin to change to their earthy, muted golden, orange and red colors. And, then, after a few weeks, they gracefully descend to the earth. You can feel all of nature taking one, last, long, deep breathe as she begins her retreat into the season of rest. The nights are long + crisp. Stars and planets and the moon shine brightly and magically above us. The forests become dark + misty. And we find ourselves yearning to follow nature’s rhythms to release, surrender, and sink down in the cozy season of autumn.
But, it’s not just a season for descent… no this is a time of magic + mystery. The witch, the shaman, the native, the wild one in our own soul want us to listen in the dark. What whispering, what medicine, what magic will you find?
Energy for the soul
It’s time to release all of the abundant, alive season of the wild woman and harvest all that has grown this year. This is the time to return home, to return to our center, to let go of all that has been and enter the season of darkness, rituals, gathering, mystery, and intuition. It is the season of focusing to home + hearth , sipping on warm concoctions, eating hot soups, burning candles, covering ourselves with blankets + sweaters, and discovering our soul’s medicine in the surrender of it all.
The witch of this season casts a spell on us and invites us into her inner circle. Mystery + magic surround us all season long, but there’s no need to be afraid. All that we need we have within. The darkness of the season of the witch simply provides us the space to release, surrender, and descend into our center so that we can listen + discover the medicine of our soul. This is the time to slow down, turn inward and create a few rituals, traditions, and gatherings of our own.
Gatherings, sabbats, + sacred celebrations
The season iof the witch is packed with the magic of holidays + festivals. There are so many special, holy days to recognize + celebrate throughout the season, beginning with the autumn equinox + ending with the winter solstice. Recognizing or marking any or all of these special days is how I bring magic to everyday life. I often find that the more I celebrate, the more rituals + traditions I participate in, the more present I am in my life from day to day. The more sacredness I find in the little things.
I do not participate in rituals + traditions because I must, or ought to, or should, or because that’s just how it’s always been done. If I feel like I “must” do something. then I don’t do it. I try to never do something/participate in something just because… Instead, I recognize + celebrate because I feel called to. Because I know that these rituals + celebrations bring a sense of grounded presence + magic to my daily life.
All that to say… here are the opportunities for celebrations + gatherings during the season of the witch. Pick + choose those which seem to call to your soul. (I will do my best to share my gatherings + celebrations on the blog as we move through the season).
- Autumn equinox: The season of the with begins with this sacred day of balance + the changing of the seasons. It is the day that ushers us into the darkest half of the year. We are called to surrender + turn inward. To harvest all that has grown + prepare for the dark winter that lies ahead. It is literally the day that has equal daylight + darkness. And, immediately the next day, the dark hours are more than the light hours.
- Samhain + All Saint’s Day: Halloween. The witch’s new year. A day to remember, celebrate, and honor the dead. The night when the veil between the spirit world + ours is the most thin. The perfect time to ponder mortality, recognize our humanness, and listen to the whispers of those who have gone before.
- Thanksgiving: An American tradition based on a legend created by white Europeans who landed on the shores of the United States when Indigenous peoples lived freely. The story of the pilgrims has misrepresented the truth of the horrors of war, death, and disease that white folks brought to a land that was already populated by tribes and families. For me, Thanksgiving is still a day to be celebrated…. but to be celebrated in truth. By honoring + remembering my European descendants – both their acts of war and their acts of peace.
- Advent: Traditionally this is a 4 week period leading up to the celebration of Christmas. But, as I no longer associate myself with one religion, yet still appreciate the season leading up to the Midwinter/Christmas celebration, Advent is still relevant to me. But, I celebrate it in my own way. Blending old traditions from my childhood with ancient practices of waiting for Yule. But, always focusing on the energies of waiting in the dark.
- Lucia. A Swedish celebration of the coming of light in the absolute darkest weeks of the year. A cozy time of mulled wine, candles, and long dark nights.
- Winter solstice/Midwinter: December 21 marks the darkest, longest night + the shortest day of the the entire year. It is the turning point and the portal into the winter season. A night shrouded in darkness, and yet, the night where hope is born. After this long night, the days start to slowly become lighter one second at a time. It is a sacred, holy day filled with wisdom, silence, and resilience.
After the winter solstice, we move from the season of the witch and into the season of the mystic. But, I’ll share more about that… after Midwinter.
How then shall we live? Wisdom, mindfulness, and slow living.
We are frightened when we must surrender to the dark. But, the darkness will come anyway. Why not allow ourselves to drop into the magical energies available to us during the season of the witch? Daring to face our fear, our mortality, our intuition, and excavating our own magic + wisdom is exactly what this world needs. We need to show up as our most true, authentic selves. And, in order to do that, we must be brave enough to live in the present moment. For now, that moment, this season is ever darkening. But, it is also magical, mysterious, and mystical.
The season of the witch isn’t calling us to take part in dark, horrible things… but, to embrace the inner magic + soulful medicine that we each have. Something mysterious that we can bring out to the world… bringing light, love, justice, and equality to a frightening + dark world.
The season of the witch is not a scary time. What is scary is refusing to respond to how we each can use this time to individually find our own inner witch and uncover our own inner medicine… that will be just what the world needs from us.
So, sink down with me, fellow witches + magical beings. From the Autumn Equinox, down to Samhain/Halloween, and then down even deeper through Thanksgiving and to the deepest, darkest, quietest day of the year – the Winter Solstice. Embrace the magic, the mood, the craft, and the wisdom of the season.
Are you ready? Let’s descend into the season of the witch together. The darkness awaits with mystery, magic, and medicine for each of us.