Mabon within Wicca and other forms of Neopaganism, is the Sabbath (festivity) corresponding to the Autumn Equinox. It is one of the eight most important celebrations within Wicca, having a very important role within the Wheel of the Year.
by John Keats
Season of mists and mellow fruitfulness,
Close bosom-friend to the maturing sun;
Conspiring with him how to load and bless
With fruit the vines that round the thatched-eves run;
To bend with apples the moss’d cottage trees,
And fill all fruit with ripeness to the core;
To swell the gourd, and plump the hazel shells
With a sweet kernel; to set budding more, And still more, later flowers for the bees,
Until they think warm days will never cease,
For summer has o’er brimmed their clammy shells.
To Witches’ the end of the year is near and we are, in sorts, winding down as winter approaches. So as you might imagine Mabon is key in helping us transition from summer to winter. We want to celebrate, be thankful, and enjoy time spent with family and friends.
Mabon is the time of harvest therefore, it represents the perfect balance between the Light (the day) and the Darkness (the night).
Time of Year:
- September 22-23 in the northern hemisphere
- March 21 in the southern hemisphere
The term Mabon was coined by the Neopagan poet and academic Aidan Kelly in the 70s. Anthropologically, there are some indications that indicate the possibility that the Celtic people celebrated the Autumn Equinox. Mabon is also known as Alban Elfed in Druidry and Paganism.
Mabon is very similar to Ostara, the spring equinox. The main difference between the two is that in Ostara the energy is expanding, and in Mabon the energy is retracting.
In Mabon, night and day last the same. There is a perfect balance between masculine and feminine polarities. The vitality of the Sun is being consumed, and the natural cycle speaks to us of the end of a stage.
Mabon symbolizes the second annual harvest in which everything previously sown is collected. It represents a time of joy, harvest and abundance, because from this moment, the winter cold echoes their presence.
Mabon is referred to as Wiccan Thanksgiving, where the Sun is grateful for all the abundance it has given us.
How to Celebrate Mabon
We dedicate this festival to the Gods of Welsh mythology. Mabon is considered a time of mysteries. It is a time to honor the Major Deities and the Spiritual World. Considered as a moment of balance, it is when we stop to rest and enjoy the fruits of our personal harvest, whether it is working in our gardens, working in our jobs, raising our families, or simply facing life everyday life.
To celebrate the Fall Festival, we suggest a ritual that can be done individually or in a group.
Prepare the place where the ritual will be performed with dried leaves, grains, seeds and the one with which it has recently matured. You will need three cauldrons, incense, water, matches, a brown candle, an apple, beer, wine or fruit juice and cereal bread. It may be used of a bell or a small drum to produce a shamanic beat during the rite.
Place the three cauldrons in the center of your Sacred Grove. In the cauldron of the left place the water, representing the Kingdom of the Sea; in the cauldron of the center the brown candle, representing the Kingdom of Heaven and in the cauldron of the right the grains and the seeds representing the Kingdom of the Earth. Smooth the place three times clockwise.
Then contact the Three Realms:
“From North to South, from East to West, we begin the journey, blessed by Heaven, Earth and Sea. Heaven above us represents the magic of sacred fire. the inspiration of the sacred well, and the Earth beneath our feet represents the sustaining pillar of the sacred tree, and we celebrate the blessings of the Second Harvest through the Festival of the Autumn Equinox.
Greetings to Mother Earth
We begin the ritual honoring Mother Earth, making her an offering, which could be a food, fruit, drink, flowers or a poetry. Put your hands on the floor and say,
“Mother Earth, bearer of all life, who travels through the green earth to the springs that spring from your womb, we honor you with the arrival of autumn, thanking you for sustaining us in this sacred rite.”
Place your offering on a platter in front of the cauldrons. Suggestion: apple.
Statement of Purpose
“We are gathered in the Sacred Grove to celebrate the Autumn Equinox Festival through the second harvest. A moment of peace and balance, where the season of light begins to give way to the dark season of the year. Fruits of which our thoughts, words and deeds have cultivated. This ritual is dedicated to the Welsh gods Mabon and his mother, Modron, Goddess of earth and fertility. “
Contact with the cauldron of the center (Kingdom of Heaven)
“Light the sacred fire that awakens creation, the true light that burns within us, show us our inner glow!”
Light the brown candle inside the cauldron and say:
“Holy Fire, shine within us!”
Repeat 3 times.
Contact with the cauldron on the left (Kingdom of the Sea)
“Sacred Waters that run under our feet, powers from the depths that flow from within us, show us the path that leads us back to Avalon!”
With the cauldron of water, wet your fingers, make the triskle or Celtic cross symbol on your forehead and say,
“Holy water, flow from within us!”
Repeat 3 times.
Contact with the cauldron on the right (Kingdom of the Earth)
“Holy Tree, which from the roots of the earth rises to heaven, wisdom that grows strong and perennial within us, show us our inner strength!”
Raise the cauldron of the earth with the grains and seeds up to the forehead and say,
“Holy tree, grow within us!”
Repeat 3 times.
Opening the Gates between the Worlds
“Welcome to the Sacred Grove, which we will establish as the Sacred Center of Worlds. In this sacred center, we will now open the portals to the Other World, where our ancestors, the spirits of nature and the gods. As soon as the gates open, I ask the Three Families to join us, blessing and protecting us during the Autumnal Equinox ritual, in return, accept our sincere gratitude! “
Make an offering to the Three Families. Suggestion: glass of beer.
Invocation to Mabon
O great and mighty Mabon
That upon being released,
He brought the light into the darkness.
Come to us as the Bearer of Light
Come to us as the Bearer of peace
Come to us as the Bearer of the harvest
O great and mighty Mabon
Accept our gratitude!
Make an offering to Mabon. Suggestion: glass of wine.
Invocation of Modron
Modron, the Great Mother of Mabon
Modron, the Lady of Avalon
Modron, the Bearer of the Harvests
Great Mother, at the moment of balance,
We entrust our lives to your care
Lady, always bring us peace, love and light
O Modron beloved, accept our gratitude!
Make an offer to Modron. Suggestion: cereal bread.
Then take a break for meditation and think about the fruits harvested. Receive the blessings of the Gods through the reading of the oracles.
Suggestion: runes or ogham.
Thanksgivings and closure of the Gates
For the blessings of the three worlds and the Mighty Beings who have blessed us, with joy in our hearts, we will carry the magic of the Sacred Grove to our daily lives. Each time we enter the Other World, we become stronger and more conscious. Now we prepare to leave giving thanks to those who have helped us.
Modron, we thank you … Awen!
Mabon, we thank you … Awen!
To the Three Families, we thank you … Awen!
To the Three Kingdoms, we thank you … Awen!
To Mother Earth, we thank you … Awen!
Now let’s finish what we started. Let the fire shine in the flame, let the good flow in the water, let the truth grow in the earth, and let the gates between the worlds now be closed.
Walking wisely, children of the Earth, I declare that the autumn ritual is over!
(Ritual based on the principles of the Druidic Order ADF – Árn Draíocht Féin – The Druid)
- Rowena Arnehoy Seneween ® Researcher of Celtic Culture and Druidism.
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