The last four important sacred days of the year for Pagans and others who follow the natural calendar are Lammas, Mabon (autumnal equinox), Samhain, and Winter Solstice (aka Yule). These days, also called sabbats, correspond with various solar and agricultural points in the year that were of primary important to our ancestors. Sabbat is a word that, similar to the word sabbath, indicates a day for ritual and celebration.
Because the usual Pagan dates vary from the astrological dates, I tend to call the period that encompasses both as the respective season. In these modern times, not all Pagans follow astrology and prefer sabbat dates that are fixed and easily remembered.
The sabbats are considered days, and nights, of great power and excellent times for big ritual magicks. The correspondences for these sabbats are given below.
Lammas Season Correspondences for 2018
As the first of three harvest sabbats, Lammas is especially considered a celebration of the gathering of grains, berries, and potatoes, observed by the baking of breads and pies. For those who align with deities, the Lammas goddesses include Ceres, Demeter, Ishtar, Freya, among many others. The Lammas gods include Lugh, Llew, Bran, and Odin.
The flip side of harvesting is sacrificing. In shamanic terms, all living entities that become food for humans have a living spirit and should be harvested in a sacred manner because we are asking them to sacrifice themselves for our benefit. Honoring their sacrifice was routinely done in many ancient societies, but sadly in modern times as most people are dissociated from the life-giving blessings of the land, this ritual is seldom carried out, if at all.
Other primary correspondences for Lammas include:
Colors -- red, gold, yellow, orange
Stones -- peridot, citrine
Ritual Oils -- eucalyptus, corn, safflower
Ritual Focus -- sacrifice, ancestors, blessing for protection of the land
If you are politically inclined, Lammas season for 2018 is an excellent time to harvest ripening support for broad changes in government at local, state, and national levels in the USA. Rituals that call for a purification of the corrupt self-serving of all politicians are much needed.
Be aware that this Lammas falls during a Mercury Retrograde period, so that the strongest action will most easily align with actions of reconsidering, re-evaluating, revising, and renewing personal and community efforts.
Mabon Season Correspondences
Mabon, or Autumnal Equinox, is the second of three harvest festivals in celebration of the gathering of grapes, nuts, apples, hops, and the sacred plant of the East, tobacco. For those aligning with deities, Mabon goddesses include Epona, Sophia, Morrigan, among others, and gods include Dionysus, the great Horned God, Bacchus, Hermes, and Thoth.
For some Pagan, most notably Wiccans, Mabon is the last sabbat of the year, with the new year marked by Samhain. So it is a time for giving thanks for year that is now waning. Astrologically it is the second day of balance, paired with the Vernal or spring equinox in March. In addition to celebrations of balance and harvest, the Mabon sabbat calls for rituals that honor the aging process, aging members of the community, and aging deities.
Other correspondences for Mabon include:
Colors -- brown, orange, violet, maroon, russet, deep gold
Stones -- amethyst, yellow and smokey topaz
Ritual Oils -- apple blossom, patchouly, hay
Ritual Focus -- celebration of wine, darkness overcoming light
For the politically active Mabon season ritual for 2018, please note that the image list above has an error -- Mabon will fall under a waxing, not waning, gibbous moon, and can be said to kick off the Full Moon period. This makes this Mabon particularly powerful for listening to / honoring our elders in the political realm who have living memory of the historical precedents relevant to today, then using their knowledge to inform present day actions.
Also, astrologically it is time to speak truth to power by increasing campaign heat on fact checking and exposing all corrupt, evil, and immoral behaviors of candidates hoping to take or hold onto office.
Samhain Season Correspondences
Samhain, pronounced sow-win, is the last of three harvest festivals in celebration of the gathering of the squashes, and the last of the apples. For those aligning with deities, Samhain goddesses include Macha, Hecate, Lillith, Rhiannon, among others, and gods include Hades, Loki, Pluto, Woden, Odin, Cronus.
Astrologically, Samhain this year occurs with a New Moon, and a square to Neptune, opening the psychic doors to intuitive knowing and transformative changes through creative actions.
Other correspondences for Samhain include:
Colors -- black, orange
Stones -- obsidian, onyx, carnelian
Ritual Oils -- frankincense, basil, yarrow, lilac, ylang-ylang, camphor, clove
Ritual Focus -- crone wisdom, reincarnation, past lives, death of the god
For the politically active, Samhain season 2018 will span election day on Nov 6. Since rituals are often performed on the eve prior to the natural holiday, this is a perfect week to spend a few hours each night in trancework, sending all the energies you can muster into the dynamic void with the intention that the death of the old status quo of corruption come to pass.
A less direct but perhaps more powerful version of that intention is to focus on the diminishment of desire to vote among those inclined to support corrupt politicians and the current administration's actions of undermining democracy and environmental protections.
Winter Solstice Season Correspondences
Winter Solstice, also called Yule or Yuletide, and Midwinter, begins the turn of wheel back into the days of increasing light, altho that progress has a slow start as days aren't noticeably longer until about February. For those aligning with deities, Winter Solstice goddesses include Gaia, Brigitte, Befana, Shekinah, among others, and gods include Apollo, Janus, Sol, Mithras, Saturn.
Astrologically, Winter Solstice this year is followed the next day by a Full Moon. Solstice rituals that call for banishing obstacles and clearing the way for manifesting intentions can yield good results.
Other correspondences for Winter Solstice include:
Colors -- red, green, white, gold
Stones -- bloodstone ruby, garnet
Ritual Oils -- Rosemary, Myrrh, Nutmeg, Cedar/Pine, Wintergreen, Ginger
Ritual Focus -- return of the Sun, honoring the triple goddess, introspection
The Winter Solstice period lends itself to making amends for the times in the year passing when we've been out of integrity with our own soul's path. Rededication rituals at this time that focus on seriously renewing commitment to a spiritual path that promotes the highest good for all beings can set the whole coming year on the best course.