Answering the Call

The veil between the worlds has grown thin. I have been blessed to receive many ancestor visits Samhain2014Alterin the past weeks (as a be-loved is on the journey home). The sense of peace that comes when things are aligned has been magical for me, especially as it comes at the end of two very up-down-sideways years (and really many more before that). I feel centred, loved, be-loved, whole.

Tonight as my sisters gather on hilltops and beaches, in backyards and living rooms, I will light a candle, stand before my alter, and lift my voice in praise of Goddess, She-That-Is, She-That-Will-Ever-Be. Blessed Samhain to you and yours.

Blessed Be!


Blessed Samhain!

It’s that time of year again… The veil between the worlds has grown thin and our thoughts turn to the ancestors (whether by blood or by belief)… We honour those who have gone before and ask that they share their wisdom with us for the new year…

While I miss the large-scale Samhain gatherings of my past, I’m comfortable with the solitary practice I’m currently engaged in. It’s a low-key, respect and remember holiday for me. I’ve got some specific questions to be asking this year – and looking for some support in the challenges ahead – so I anticipate lighting some extra candles. I’m mourning, because that’s what I need to do now, but I’m also planning for what comes next.

Blessings to all, and Happy New Year!

On Falling

Cause when you’re falling / I can’t tell which way is down
When you’re falling / I can’t tell which way is down
I keep seeing all those things
My feet don’t touch the ground
(Afro Celt Sound System, via PaganRadioNetwork)

The first snow is falling. The Equinox trappings have been cleared from the alter, and a single candle is lit to mark the passage from one sacred moment to another. The alter – truly a family one, now that Xander is starting his journey on the path – will soon be covered in photos, poems and mementoes of those who have gone before us. Our list grows every year, and even so there are moments of gratitude that this name or that soul has not yet passed to the next world.

For me, this season is not only about mourning the ancestors, but also for mourning what could have been. This is especially sharp for me at the moment as my professional life has been rocked by change so deep and scarring that I don’t know what comes next.

When someone is mourning, we try to comfort them. At some point the comfort becomes discomfort – Why are you still sad? – and we’re left to fall on our own. We learn to hide the sadness within ourselves, to act as if everything is fine.

Everything is not fine.

The first snow continues to fall.

Which way is down?

Blessed Samhain

Metro – Something Wicca this way comes


  katie turner/metro

Tracey Braun, pictured in Riley Park, says paganism is a nature-based religion, with many of their holidays centring around the moon and sun, and the changing seasons.

Published: October 31, 2011 5:52 a.m.
Last modified: October 30, 2011 11:49 p.m.
When you’re a witch, the phone seems to ring a little more around Halloween, Calgarian Tracey Braun says.“It’s just that Halloween has become the thing that people associate witches with, so it’s usually around this time people start to call around and say, ‘Hey, do you know any?’”The stereotypical association of witches with Halloween can be frustrating because most people don’t understand the underlying religious beliefs, Braun says.

“When I was Christian, it’s not like everyone called me at Christmas and said, ‘So tell me about Christmas.’”

Sally Patton says that when she and fellow Calgary witches get together they don’t fly around on brooms.

“We would if we could,” she adds with a chuckle. “We would love to be able to do all the things they do on Bewitched. Unfortunately, they only work in Hollywood.”

Fun aside, Patton says her beliefs fall more into line with the pagan religion Wicca. She believes in equality and in a God that is both male and female in essence. And she has been known to conjure up and share herbal recipes.

“It’s not that witches just pop out of the woodwork at Halloween,” Braun adds. “We have holidays throughout the year.”

With files from katie turner