In the northern hemisphere, the change from the summer season to fall is announced by mother nature with an extra crispness in the air, fresh fallen leaves, and the sun gently setting earlier and earlier. But did you know that for many Pagans and Wiccans, the Fall Equinox - the first official day of autumn - is a holiday? Honoring ancient traditions and harvest festivals of years past, modern Pagans celebrate Mabon as a time of gratitude, reflection, and giving. And, as it is celebrated at a time of year when day and night are balanced perfectly in length, Mabon is the perfect time to both honor the past, and look towards the future.
Honoring the Equinox
Ancient Pagan civilizations honored the Fall Equinox with a massive harvest festival. Viewed as a time to give thanks for the years’ bounty and to prepare for the tougher winter months ahead, this ancient holiday is often likened to the Pagan Thanksgiving.
It’s also commonly viewed as a grounding force. Mabon is the second of three major harvests on the Wiccan calendar, called the Wheel of the Year. Balanced inbetween the other two harvest festivals, Lughnasadh and Samhain, and taking place on a day when we see equal daylight and darkness, many view this as a time to bring balance to our lives.
Mabon itself is a relatively new idea for a very old tradition. Mabon is named for a Welsh god, the son of the Earth Mother goddess Modron in classic Welsh tradition. Modern Pagans began celebrating Mabon in the early 1970s, as a way to connect with their ancient roots.
How to Celebrate Mabon
Want to know how to join in the festivities? It’s all about apples. Apples are already one of the most common symbols of fall in the western hemisphere, but many say apples have an even deeper connection to Pagans.
If you slice an apple right down the middle, you’ll notice a five-pointed seed shape resembling a pentagram. Pagan belief links this five-pointed symbol to the forces of Mother Nature herself - Earth, Air, Fire, Water, and Spirit.
That means many Pagans will be using apples this Mabon, whether that’s making tasty baked goods like apple pie, or juicing them for apple cider. They’re also a common decorative item, whether in fruit baskets or placed on an altar in one’s home.
So whether you’re cooking with, decorating with, or bobbing for them, apples do a whole lot more than keep the doctor away. This Mabon, you might even find that they help bring you spiritual balance, or maybe even a closer connection to your ancestors, this autumn.
The best part about many Pagan rituals that I’ve attended is the cakes and ale at the end. I’m sure my friend, Carl can attest to that. 🍺
Thanks for reminding me, Lionheart! I thought I had completed my shopping cart for October at Walmart.com, but forgot all about pumpkin bread ingredients, for my Samhain ritual.
Yes Samhain is just around the corner for all those of you that are Wiccan within the Pagan culture.
Blessed be, Carl.
As an ESOL teacher I touch on the topic of Halloween and its roots of celebrating 'evil.' Am I going to be attacked for indoctrinating students? :-)
🤭 Hopefully, you are teaching students that there is good, and bad, in us all, whether we are religious, or not.
Halloween, is just a pagan celebration to be thankful for the harvest. No one cuts any foreskins off, or attempts to sacrifice any children on an altar, like Abraham almost did, George 🤪
Mabon? Never heard of him and I'm half Welsh late father's side and we were never taught about pagans or wiccans at school all we were taught is Christianity
Indoctrination can certainly stifle education, that’s for sure.
Most all "Christian" holidays began as pagan holidays. It's fascinating to learn about all of them.
That's no reason why you can't learn about it now, Nicholas. There are many books on the subject. If you want to learn about the history of Wicca and Paganism I'd suggest you read The Wiccan Mysteries by Raven Grimassi.
Mabon is a time of year to do our final Harvest for the year and it is a pagan holiday not a Christian holiday most holidays are pagan holidays
@Cindy L Edgar, it sounds very much like our Christian Thanksgiving.
Depending on the indigenous tradition the Autumnal Equinox goes by may names. Mabon was popularized in Gardinarian Wicca. Some look at the use of the word as appropriation, as Wicca draws from several different native traditions. As a practicing Irish pagan we use different words for the celebration, but much of the lore is similar. Whatever your traditions are, understand that part of identifying as pagan means that you accept that different cultures have different celebrations and all are equally important. Diversity and cultural exchange and acceptance should be a core part of any earth based practice. As an anthropologist and a historian, cultures have been exchanging and adopting ideological concepts for thousands of years.
All very informative many thanks.
Hi Thanks very informative!I am Expanding in wiccan/pagan philosophies is trending & modern. Wiccan is also an accepted christianity.
Carol, you seem confused. Wicca doesn't have anything to do with Christ or Christianity, and neither does this blog.
Carl Bernard Elfstrom, actually, this blog is a monastery, aka a religious community of ordained ministers and non-. While non-Christians are represented in Universalism and Unitarianism (we are a Universalist church), both are part of Radical Protestantism. In other words, while membership is open to non-Christians, ULC has a Christian blueprint.
@Carol M. Anaski-Figurski, no. Christianity does not accept Wicca.
Hi Thanks that is very informative blessed mabon. I am expanding into the multifaith pieces & wiccan & pagan are trending & modern.
Ehrman, you also now seem confused. You'd be much better off getting in touch with your inner child, than surrendering the things of youth. Ofcourse, they didn't find out about that until long after you were dead and buried. However, those who quote you should know better. It's as if they mistakenly think that the answers to everything can be found in that silly poem you wrote.
Once again Ehrman, I am never fatigued, and Witches like me are never alone, so we couldn't possibly be lonely. Also, if you used the right herbs and other natural substances you wouldn't get fatigued iether. You might not even be dead! And yes, we do converse with the dead quite frequently, so think nothing of it.
Carl Bernard Elfstrom, in conscience and in love I feel I need to warn you that the path you have chosen is very dangerous. I hope you will realize it before something bad happens. ‘The Exorcist’ is inspired by a true story - the possessed person was a young boy named Robie; he ended up possessed. It started with the Ouija board. Hitler was known for using the Ouija board; he ended up mentally disturbed. 284 Green Street, in Enfield, London (UK) also started with the Ouija board, and the story does not have a happy ending. I have a history with the Ouija board, and I will end the comment here.