Hekate Crone Goddess of Samhain

Merry Meet All,

Samhain is here. The dark time of year casts its’ shadow. The last of the harvest is gleaned from the fields and frost glistens on ripe pumpkins. It is the time of year when the veil between the worlds is thinnest. Samhain is the Witches’ New Year and the time of the crone.

Hekate is a crone goddess. The crone is one of the triple aspects of maiden, mother and crone. The crone is the elder wise one who is relied on for her knowledge, wisdom and healing. Hekate is associated with the moon, cronehood and the underworld. Hekate is a guardian of the three-way crossroads. She is portrayed as bearing the keys to the underworld, joined by a three-headed dog and surrounded by lit torches. She is associated with ghosts, the dark moon and magic. Animals that are sacred to her are black cats, ravens, owls and wolves. Hekate can be invoked on November 30, the night of the crossroads, or on October 31.

The cauldron, or womb of the dark goddess is a vessel of rebirth and renewal into another life. The cauldron is symbolic of our deep collective unconscious. Hekate is equated with Persephone, queen of the Underworld. She was an attendant of Persephone. Hekate was a goddess of childbirth and watched over young women in their maiden phase of life.

Those who worship goddesses of a lighter aspect overlook Hekate. Only to do that is to deny the third phase of the goddess: the crone. The crone is not as revered as she once was. It is common to tease an older woman as a hag woman or crone. Its’ true meaning has faded from peoples’ memories. We have lost much of our traditions and lore.

I perceive Hekate as a protective goddess. She is fearless and strong. I participated in a ritual in a coven where we invoked her. The ritual was fun and energetic. We held hands as we danced in circle and chanted her name. It was a memorable ritual.

Many witches like to honor the spirits of their ancestors at Samhain. This ritual can be performed on a dark moon or a full moon night. Since Samhain is a Sabbat of death, Hekate guards the door to the spirit world. A ritual to honor the crone goddess and our ancestors is shown below.

Before the ritual, prepare yourself by physically cleaning and purifying your sacred space. Wash the dishes and sweep the floors, put the laundry away and file away any paper. Clutter can affect your ritual. Remove the negative stale chi from your living space by smudging it with sage. Have a meditation bath to purify and prepare you for the ritual. Add soothing essential oils such as lavender and frankincense and salts to your bath. Assemble your altar ahead of time.

Decorate your altar with items that correspond to Samhain such as chrysanthemums, mugwort, pomegranates, pumpkins and skulls. Your altar cloth can be black and orange. Light black and orange candles and burn spicy cinnamon, clove, rosemary and allspice incense. Place pictures of departed loved ones on your altar.

Begin the ritual with a meditation. Cast the circle according to your tradition and call the quarters. It is optional to invoke the horned god though the crone ritual is designed for the goddess.

Light the quarter candles and reflect on what you want to achieve during the ritual. Ask what you seek and nothing more. Leave an offering of seeds, herbs and grains or flowers. Display a sincerely reverent attitude. She will favor you if you show respect for her aspect.

Say aloud: “Hekate, goddess of death and renewal, on this Samhain eve, I do honor you, goddess of cronehood, the moon and the underworld. I implore you to hear my call. I need your guidance as I reach for spiritual growth.” State what you request whether that be a positive change in your life, a transition from a bad situation to a positive one or protection.

Light the candle and put it near the offering bowl. Say: “I offer this flame to light our ancestors’ paths.” Dip the cake into the ale and put it near the offering bowl. Say: “I offer this food and drink to our ancestors tonight. May this food sustain you. Blessed Be.”

Be open to the messages that you may receive. Leave the offering outdoors for the spirits and wildlife. Complete the ritual and close the circle. Tidy up the altar area. Let the candles burn down. Cast your incense ashes and candle stubs outdoors. Remember to ground yourself after the ritual with cakes and ale. Imagine you are a tree and you are pushing your roots down into the cold earth.

It is a tradition to setup a dumb plate for those who have passed. Set a plate with utensils on a plate. Prepare a meal from your harvest and offer some to your chosen deity first. Enjoy the meal with cider or wine. Ask for blessings on the harvest and to guard your family from dark spirits on Samhain Eve. Carve a pumpkin and set it at a window to ward off the dark spirits. Light a white candle at the window to guide the spirits of the departed. Roast some pumpkin seeds.

The crone goddess Hekate may appear to you during a meditation or in your dreams. Heed your dreams and insights when she shows herself to you. May her blessings grace you in life.

Blessed Be
Lady Spiderwitch

Samhain is almost here

Merry Meet All,

I apologize for the late posting. I know you are anxiously awaiting Samhain, as am I. I do not have much decorating to do. That is because, truth be told, my apartment looks like Halloween all year. Ha ha ha. I have my witch dolls, and everything else set up in full view all year.

Tomorrow I plan to make more pumpkin soup and maybe some pumpkin bread. I have been busy with the shower wall repairs, and have completed writing the plot for a new novel I am working on that has really inspired me. I’ve been on long walks on the trail where I can enjoy the last lingering notes of summer mesh with the striking colors of fall. Trees are painted in hues of gold, red and other fiery colors.

I hope you are all finding ways to prepare for Samhain. A friend of mine mentioned a dumb supper. I look forward to performing it and I can think of one or two people I would like to honor this Samhain. The first that comes to mind is my dear grandfather. Samhain is usually on October 31. However, the planets may have the final say this year. Samhain begins when the sun reaches 15% Scorpio on November 7. That is a cross quarter day. The moon will be in Aries. moon will be in Capricorn on Monday, October 31. We have plenty of time to prepare and to look forward to till then!

I have had my kitty for a year now. She is a Samhain kitty though her birthday is in January. I adopted her at Samhain. She is a wonderful animal familiar.

So get out your cauldrons, pumpkins to carve and seeds to roast. I wish you all a wonderful Samhain this year! Remember to honor your ancestors and to have lots of fun.

Blessed Be,
Lady Spiderwitch

October Skies are the Bluest

Merry Meet All,

I have noticed the skies in October are the bluest of all year. Leaves are colorfully sprinkling over the lawns and fields and pumpkins are glowing ripe orange. My garden is slowly going to sleep for the long cold winter ahead. The leaves, buds and petals are fading. I have taken the decorations and put them aside till next spring. My garden is still lovely. The worn rocks, dark soil and vermillion green leaves are striking in their beauty.

October 11 is the time of the Full Moon, the Blood Moon. This full moon arrives before Samhain and it is the moon of change and of falling leaves. The correspondences are dark colors such as blues, purples, and black. The gemstones are obsidian, amethyst and tourmaline. The gods Herne, Apollo, Cernunnos and Mercury will appreciate being honored this Samhain. The herbs to use in your rituals are apples, pomegranates, pumpkins, mint, sweet annie, catnip and pennyroyal. The element of air also corresponds with the Blood Moon.

The veil is at its thinnest at this time of year. Use this time for spiritual growth and to practice your divination. You can also try to contact a deceased ancestor if you seek guidance in life. The Full Moon is known among the Natives as Hunter’s Moon because the deer would be fat and the foxes would be easy to spot from the fields that were cleared.

The 28th of Friday is the beginning of the Celtic Tree Month of Reed. Reflect on what you have accomplished during the year since last Samhain and what worked in your life. Begin the new Celtic year on the right foot. Donate unwanted items to charity and take the time to fix, repair things and clean so it is fresh after Samhain. Give your altar and tools a heavy duty cleaning to remove stale chi.

Make a mugwort infusion and rinse your altar tools in it. Scrub down your altar with the mugwort infusion. Mugwort or yarrow are cleansing and are associated with magick.

Have a magickal Full Moon
Lady Spiderwitch

Early October

Merry Meet All,

Summer’s slow crawl has raced to the Fall. It is my favorite time of year. I am counting the time down to Samhain. I can’t wait and I am sure there are millions who share in my anticipation of the revelry. I have baked three cranberry and pumpkin loaves tonight. I have still a huge chunk of pumpkin in my freezer.

My apartment is slowly getting more decorated for Samhain. And this brought one thing to mind as I was reflecting on Samhain. It was the fact that I have had Shadow for a year now. Samhain was when I adopted her and that was a year ago. May there be many more. I am so happy to have Shadow and she seems to love me and her new home too.
I harvested most of the herbs from my garden. I made my own first Echinacea tincture this year. I harvested fennel, garlic chives, dill, lemon balm, chocolate mint, spearmint, pineapple mint, sweet woodrow and yarrow from my garden. Last night, I heartily enjoyed organic hot chocolate mint tea. My garden is starting to wind down for the long cold sleep of winter. I will miss my garden this summer.

I picked up a copy of Lunenburg Werewolf by Steve Vernon, master of folk tales. I enjoyed the book and I love the cover. The release of the book is perfect for Samhain. I read the book in one sitting and I promise you’ll be chilled to the bone after reading these tales. The book is available at local bookstores.

I wish you all a Merry Samhain!
Blessed Be,
Lady Spiderwitch