Saturday, November 5, 2011

Sights of Samhain

I finished off my "Jaguar Days" and welcomed in Winter by getting out into Nature. While others got together to honor the dead and exchange tricks for treats, my ceremonies were personal and private, tuning in to the Web of Life. I did, however, attend a communal ceremony or two... :-)

Mrs. Gilbert's Memorial Bench. (Kit Carson Park, 6/10)
Mrs. Gilbert was my teacher in the fourth grade. She introduced me to hamsters as pets; I took one from several she brought with her on the last day of school. I named him Clarence. He wound up living under our dishwasher for most of his life (by choice) and was buried in the backyard, where an apricot tree would be planted years later. She also knew my mother's family, when everyone was growing up. Small world, eh? ;-)

Shrine for the Departed. (Kit Carson Park, 10/11)
I constructed this shrine under her bench with the materials on hand: sticks, pistachio nut shells, cigarette butts (to represent tobacco), and a crow feather that had seen better days. I pocketed some extra materials to take with me to Questhaven a few days afterwards; more on that in a moment.

Jade-Green Stillness (Kit Carson Park, 10/11)
First, the trick: the pond looks green, but that's actually algae on the surface. The algae will disappear with the first good Winter rains.

"Hidden Glory" (Kit Carson Park, 10/11)
Next, the treat: this is a morning glory bloom I found hiding under the bench one sits upon to meditate by the pond shown above. I took a moment to appreciate fully her breathtaking, and utterly simple beauty. :-)

The other end of my Natural Adventures unfolded at Questhaven...

The labyrinth awaits the walker. (11/11)

Star Altar. (11/11)
Here's where the rest of the pistachio shells came in handy. In the center of the star is my new Stibnite rod, being charged with Solar energy! :-)

The way to the Gnome Castle. (11/11)

The Gnome Castle. (11/11)
 You can see why this formation of rocks is called the "Gnome Castle." It's changed in the year and a half (or so) since I saw it last. There is a LOT of Earth/Fey energy concentrated here!

Charging on the Gnome Castle. (11/11)
Here's the Stibnite again (at the top), receiving some fabulous Fey energy. The small light triangular rock at the bottom was my offering; I left it behind.

Wise Stone Council. (11/11) 

Further up from the Gnome Castle is this grouping of stones. Similar energy, but feels much older. With permission asked for and granted, I performed a quick ceremony...

Offering #2 (11/11)
...finishing off with this crow feather.
I would have stayed longer with the Wise Ones, but there are a pair of Electric towers at the very top of this particular hill. I don't think I was up there more than ten minutes before I became extremely nauseous - holy sensitivities, Batman!

In between, here's a wee taste of one of the communal ceremonies I partook of...

Lighting up the Night. (Escondido, 10/11)
It's a bit of a challenge to take pics during ceremonial events. You want to capture the beauty and awe, yet honor the privacy and sacredness of the moment, which picture-taking can disrupt. This pic was taken during a lull in the action, and with permission from the spirits overseeing the event. :-)

Now my focus shifts to what lies ahead: the start of the Transition on 11/11/11!

Destination Unknown. (Kit Carson Park, 10/11)
What does the future hold? Looks like we'll all find out together...

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