Panmankey.com

The internet home of Jason Mankey

Samhain Ritual

I wrote this ritual shortly after my Grandfather passed away.  I love this ritual, one of the best things I've ever written.  (I probably say that way too much!)  There was a lot of emotion in the circle the first time I participated in this ritual, and I like to think the ritual hits all the "high notes" of what Samhain is about. 

There are very little directions included with this ritual because I think it's all pretty much self explanatory.  As in all of my rituals, italics indicate a spoken part. 

All material written by Jason W. Mankey unless otherwise noted.

A Samhain Ritual

Statement of Intent:
We gather here tonight to celebrate the passing of the Old Year and to welcome in the new. We gather to honor our loved ones who have left this world, and to welcome them back to us once more. We are here to celebrate Samhain, the final harvest, and the first sabbat of the year. Blessed Be!


Circle:
I cast this circle round. I cast you with the sword. I cast you with the energy of the Earth. Three times round I cast this circle, for protection, for the holding of our energy, and to create sacred space. The circle is cast. So mote it be.


Calling the Quarters
East:   Ye Guardians of the Watchtowers of the East, ye Powers of Air; Spirits of Clear Will and Knowledge, I do summon, stir, and call you up, to witness our rites and to guard the Circle.

South:   Ye Guardians of the Watchtowers of the South, ye Powers of Fire; Spirits of Illumination and Desire, I do summon, stir, and call you up, to witness our rites and to guard the Circle.

West:   Ye Guardians of the Watchtowers of the West, ye Powers of Water; Spirits of Death and Initiation, I do Summon, stir, and call upon you to Witness our Rites and to guard the Circle.

North:   Ye Guardians of the Watchtower of the North, ye Powers of Earth, Keepers of the Northern Portals, Spirits of Mountain and Plains, I do summon, stir, and call upon you to witness our Rites and to Guard the Circle.

Call to the God
I call to the Great God, Lord of the Underworld, the Horned One, Master of the Great Hunt. We ask you to be with us tonight and join us in our circle. Help us to understand the mysteries of the Underworld, help us to reunite with loved ones who are now a part of your realm. Give us the courage to face the coming of the year, and help us to learn the lessons we received in the last turn of the Wheel. Hail and Welcome, Blessed Be!

Charge of the God

Call to the Goddess
We call to you Great Goddess, Eternal Lady, Mistress of the Moon. Join us Great Crone as we celebrate the passing of the Old Year and the coming of the New. Great Lady, smile down upon us, illuminate us with your wisdom and grace. Allow us to feel the touch of those who have left us. Stir our souls with passion and fire as we gather here tonight to celebrate the sacred Samhain festival. Hail and Welcome, Blessed Be!

Drawing Down the Moon
The star is bright, oh feeble ancient light, shine on us tonight,by the Great Lady's Might! Eternal Mother, Great star of life, Cosmic Goddess, ancient provider, descend apace, unto me... I ask you... perfect your love, perfect your trust, your daughter calls unto thee. Descend into this body, blest holy shrine of mystery. Tonight I annoint thee and honor thee lady as a servant of the living Goddess.

High Priest
Blessed be thy feet which bring you the mysteries!
(kisses feet of Priestess)
Blessed be thy womb which brings forth life.    (kisses womb)
Blessed be thy breasts formed in beauty.     (kisses breasts)
Blessed be thy mouth which shall utter the sacred names!    (kisses lips)
Blessed be thy soul which feels the magick.    (kisses forehead)
Arise our Lady, and bless us with your wisdom.

Charge of the Goddess

Lighting of the Samhain Fire
The warmth of last year drifts away from us. It takes with it the green growing things, the blossom of the flower, and the air's warmth breath. As it goes, it leaves us with one gift, the Samhain fire. The fire we light tonight will burn without us and within it. It is the warmth the Gods give us as we face the coming winter. It is the prayer and promise that we will remain safe in spite of the chilling elements around us. It is also the hope that we will keep in our hearts until next Beltaine. The hope that one day soon we will again be running carefree through the warm grasses with the sun smiling gently upon our backs. Tonight we light this fire to signify all of this. Blessed Be!

The Wreath
As the fire burns we know that we have come to the end and the beginning of another turn of the Wheel. The past is now behind us. The worries, sufferings, losses, and pains we had to endure in order to grow are now done. We set aside this last year and put it to rest. This wreath is our symbol of last year. We give it up now to the Samhain fire. The flames will devour all those things we seek to set outside. Let the fire remind us of what we have learned this year, and be a promise to what we will learn in this next year.    (Wreath is placed on the fire.  Before the ritual starts have people affix things to the wreath from this year that they want out of their lives.)

Ancestor Candles
As the Wheel turns each year we experience the joys of new life and the ever present hand of death. We have all lost friends, family, mentors as the years have rolled by. Tonight in the quiet of the Samhain night, when the veil between the worlds is at its thinnest we can almost reach out again and touch them.

As the wind blows we can almost hear their voices, in the sparkilng dark sky we can almost see their faces once more. Their presence creeps into our hearts. Tonight we call to the Ancestors, those who have come before us and helped us to learn life's lessons. Come to us in our circle and let us feel your warmth and love once more.

Tonight we honor you in this magickal circle. You may have left this world, but you have never left our hearts. O Folk gathered here tonight in our circle of love, trust, and friendship, join me in honoring those who have left us. Let their energy fill up our circle, let our tears be tears of joy as we feel a brief reuniting with them.

Step forward and take a candle, light it with a taper from the Samhain fire, say the name of whom you would wish to join us this night. Place that candle in the ground to symbolize their presence and your love for them. This should all be done quietly.

(Note from Jason:  Participants are to say the name of a person, not tell a life story or attempt to put the spotlight on themselves. This is a time for quiet, personal, reflection.)

After all the candles have been lit . . . .
We welcome you Great Ancestors!! Stir in our hearts as you stir in our circle! ! Hail and welcome!

After this portion of the ritual, you may want to allow for a few minutes of quiet reflection, or hugs.  I cried like a baby during this portion of the ritual.

The Great Rite/Cakes and Ale
High Priestess:
Even in the impending darkness of winter the Gods have given us many promises. There is the fire, the promise of warmth in the darkness ahead. There is also the promise of new life. That life is contained within all of us, it is the seed within the man, and the womb within the woman.

High Priest:
It is more than a promise, it is a gift, a gift whose meaning is that we shall always be as long as we treat this world with dignity and respect. It is the joining of womb and seed which provides the bounty given to us by the Earth.


High Priestess:
It is the joining that provides the quickening in our hearts when our lover walks past. It is the joining that fills the fields with grain and makes the vines ripe with grapes.

High Priest:
I take this athame which symbolizes my seed and the promise of the Lord that there will always be bounty on the Earth. I hold this athame as I hold onto the promise of the Lady that there will always be life on this sacred Earth.


The athame is plunged into the chalice.

High Priestess:
Lord and Lady bless this grain and this wine as honor you and honor the Ancestors who are here with us tonight. Blessed Be!

The bread and wine are passed silently around the circle. Thus the Dumb Supper is celebrated. The High Priest and Priestess should be sure to keep some of the wine and bread in the center of the circle for the Ancestors.

High Priestess:
Dearest Ancestors, those who have departed this world, thank you for joining us this night. Let us never forget what you mean to us as you retreat once more into the veil that seperates the two worlds. Hail and farewell!

Goodbye to the Lady
We thank the Lady, the Great Mother, the Eternal Crone for being with us tonight in our circle. Remind us of your beauty and your love in the days ahead. Help us to find the strength to honor you as much in the darkness as we do in the light. Blessed Be!

Goodbye to the Lord
We thank the Great God, The Horned One, Lord of the Sun for joining us in our circle. Soon you will come to us as the Child of Hope, but for now we honor you as your weary journey around this turn of the Wheel has come to an end. Blessed Be!


Quarters
North
   Ye Guardians of the Watchtowers of the North, ye Powers of Earth, Keepers of the Northern Portals, Spirits of Mountain and Plains, you have joined us in our rites and have guarded our circle well. We thank you for joinins us this sacred night. Hail and farewell!

West   Ye Guardians of the Watchtowers of the West, ye Powers of Water; Spirits of Death and Initiation, you have joined us in our rites and have guarded our circle well. We thank you for joinins us this sacred night. Hail and farewell!

South  Ye Guardians of the Watchtowers of the South, ye Powers of Fire; Spirits of Illumination and Desire, you have joined us in our rites and have guarded our circle well. We thank you for joinins us this sacred night. Hail and farewell!

East   Ye Guardians of the Watchtowers of the East, ye Powers of Air; Spirits of Clear Will and Knowledge, you have joined us in our rites and have guarded our circle well. We thank you for joinins us this sacred night. Hail and farewell!


Circle
With this sword I cast this circle. I cast this circle round thrice, now I unweave the magick we have made. Three times round I walk around this sacred space, releasing the energy we have raised, putting near an end to our rite.

Closing
The circle is open, but never broken. Another year has passed us and another year full of promise and hope stands before us. With the blessings of the Lord and Lady, the love of those around us, and the memories of those who have left us, we go from this sacred place knowing of the bounty yet to come in our lives. Blessed Be!

copyrite 2005 Panmankey

Twitter Follow Button