High Rite: Samhain
Our Samhain High Rite of 2014 will be on Saturday, November 1st at 5:30pm. Participants can start gathering no earlier than 3:30pm at CedarLight Center to help prepare and enjoy the center. Please arrive no later than 4:30pm for pre-ritual briefing.
Times are subject to change, please check before you leave.
- Lore of the Season: Our Prayer for this year’s Rite is: “Forging a new fire to illuminate the darkness of winter.”
- Deities of the Occasion: We will be honoring Tlachtga as our primary patron with the Morrighan as our Gatekeeper.
- WHO IS TLACHTGA? Some information about her can be found here:
http://www.druidry.org/library/tlachtga-and-ancient-roots-halloweensamhain (taken with grain of salt)
She is a Goddess of Lightning, Storms, Magic, Druids, the Sun. She brings forth the fire of the Gods to earth, the “Earth Spear” in the form of lightning. Her story is often confused or re-imagined by monks and earnest storytellers.
- General Themes: We will be extinguishing the past year’s fire and lighting a new Samhain fire to drive off the shadows of winter, as they do at the Hill of Ward (Tlachtga) in Ireland. We will bring offerings of sacred burnables as our offerings, with all prayers and intentions in the logs/paper/kindling decorated or imbued with qualities of purification, flame, new beginnings, protection, etc that we may eradicate the garbage of the past year and rekindle the flames at the grove and our own hearths. Whether or not our offerings are accepted will base entirely around if the fire lights. If it lights, we will be relighting all of our torches, and two other bonfires for the attendees to light a candle to bring that fire home Candles will be provided.
- Community Service Project: Our community service project for this Rite will be cleaning our local Biddle cemetery once more. We will be leaving from CLG after Walk with the Old ones around 1:45pm on 10/19.
- Important note: Oaths are serious business. It is highly recommended that if you make an Oath to any of the Deities present that you keep to them. We ask that any planned Oaths be done at CedarLight rituals only with prior consultation with the Chief Liturgist, as it affects community and the ritual as a whole.
- IMPORTANT NOTE ABOUT OFFERINGS: The offerings segment are all items with which we will build our new Samhain Fire: Firewood, (Birch is a great one), oiled papers/incense blends, herbs, kindling, wee sticks, whatever is not noxious or poisonous to breathe, gaseous accelerants, and ABSOLUTELY NO MESQUITE due to allergies.
- Additionally, people are welcome to bring photographs of loved ones who have passed, as well as pre-carved pumpkins or turnips to the ritual to adorn the the Grove space, as well as to provide lights in the darkness. You may also wish to bring a small dish of food for the dumb supper table for the Ancestors. We will have a processional during the Rite for people to take their offerings to the dumb supper table.
Note: Please take your Jack-o-Lanterns AND photographs home with you also! While they do feed the squirrels, they also feed the rats (sorry but this is Baltimore) for which we can be fined. So take them home and enjoy them there. THANKS!
- Bring a Dish for the Potluck! Bring a dish to share with the Grove after ritual if you wish to participate in the feast. We have meat eaters, vegetarians, and people on gluton restricted diets. Participants who bring a dish to share are welcome to participate in the feast. Your dish should serve approximately 6-10 people. Please label whether your dish has meat or not for our vegetarians. It’s also a good idea to list the ingredients if available. We are planning on preparing dishes that were passed down to us by an Ancestor if at all possible. We will be asking our Ancestors to join us for dinner and will be setting up a special place setting for them at their Altar, so if you want to save them a little, we will be having a dumb supper processional during the Rite.
- Some suggested dishes include:
- Various fruits for this time of year (apples for example)
- Baked breads and pastries
- Pumpkin dishes or orange dishes in general
- Lots of apple dishes!
- Apple cider and mulled spices
- Ancestral recipes or foods your ancestors enjoyed.
GUESTS WILL BE ASKED TO WASH THEIR OWN DISHES WHEN THEY ARE DONE.
- There are cans of sodas available at the Grove for 50 cents each. Feel free to contribute beverages to the Grove!
- Attire: We are dressing as wandering souls, fae, nature spirits, spirits, etc so as to demonstrate our respect for the covenant we hold: We respect them, and we don’t get carried off into the night. We are wearing a lot of black flowy garments (except the fire squad) like capes and cloaks and robes, and wearing masks. We will be constructing animal skulls for masks and decoration after Walk with the Old Ones on 9/28. Also, DRESS FOR COLD WEATHER. Samhain rites tend to be longer so warm shoes or boots are a must. Toe warmers are recommended. Warm clothing, cloaks, coats and gloves. Remember that being outside for several hours is much different from running between car and buildings. If you don’t have enough, you are going to be miserable if it is really cold. Check the weather forecast before the ritual.
- We allow responsible drinking AFTER the High Rite.
We permit moderate drinking during revels at Samhain. Moderation is one of our virtues, however, and we will ask anyone who become disruptive to leave or call them a cab home. We do also reserve the right to hold your keys for you until you are capable of taking yourself home.
All CedarLight events have a suggested donation of $10 per person. This can be contributed to Dagda’s Cauldron either at the Grove, or online through Paypal. Our Paypal address is firstname.lastname@example.org
- All donations go towards CedarLight Center bills and upkeep.
- Who?: Our high rites are always open to the public, bring a friend!
- Children and Pets
Children are always welcome to all CedarLight events, but must be attended at all times. We do not yet have children activities planned for this event. Special Samhain note: this rite has the potential to be incredibly creepy for children so please act judiciously. If you wouldn’t take them to a haunted house, don’t take them to Samhain. We love kids, but we don’t want to leave scars on them because they accidentally backed into an unidentified people-shaped thing with a deer skull head. Pets however, are not allowed. Thank you for understanding.