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I was thinking about the Autumnal Equinox this week because of the changes I am seeing around me (living in North Central Blogistan as I do) and because, for me, it is the time of the year for thoughtful reflection.

Autumn is my favorite time of year because I am drawn to the colors of fall and because I thrive in the cooler temperatures.

The Autumnal Equinox coincides with the pagan holiday of Mabon. It is also called the Feast of the Ingathering and is a ritual of thanksgiving for the fruits of the earth and a recognition of the need to share them to secure the blessings of the Goddess during the winter months.

We see the changes manifested daily. Certain birds have moved on…different but familiar birds have taken their place: the robins are gone but the juncos return…this will be their home until late spring.

The leaves on the trees are starting to turn. Some of the more compromised trees are almost completely in their fall foliage.

The evenings are getting cooler…and the mornings as well. And of course the light is changing.

The word “equinox” is derived from the Latin aequus (equal) and nox (night), because around the equinox, the night and day are approximately equally long. From the Sunrise/Sunset calendar based on where I live, the day/night will not be equal until Sunday but we celebrate the Equinox “when the tilt of the Earth’s axis is inclined neither away from nor towards the Sun”. This year it was on September 23.

Now it is time to start storing our summer things away and getting ready for winter. In times past, we would harvest and store. Most of us now do other things. We empty our rain barrels, shut off our outside water, drain the hoses and cover our delicate plants. We might put down (environmentally safe) weed and feed, we might make that last shorter cut on the lawn before putting away the mower.

I use the autumn to rebalance myself: to remind myself of my connection to the earth and to reaffirm my belief in her cycles. Autumn means winter is not far off but after winter comes spring and then summer. We are never too far from that which we cannot see.

A Blessed and Fruitful Mabon to my pagan and non-pagan friends alike.


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