I am absolutely not sitting here watching “Practical Magic” on the ABC Family channel.
Except that I am.
It’s one of a couple dozen movies that pop up this time every year and, because I’m a sucker for a crappy movie on a family-oriented cable channel, I’ll watch it every time it’s on. I waste so much time this way.
Anyway, it, in a very Disney/Hollywood/contrived manner touches on a bunch of October topics, the most obvious is the icon of Halloween: the witch.
I’ve known witches for years. Not the Disney/Hollywood type, but followers of what I have long referred to as the Earth religions: Wicca and the like. It’s all interesting stuff if you’re someone with an open mind (which many people sadly do not possess), these old belief systems and their newer, revised counterparts.
I love that many of them revolve not around feast days that celebrate individual humans or specific events, but instead follow a more organic calendar, tied to the passing of the seasons.
October 31 not only marks the more commercialized holiday that we know as Halloween, but is also still celebrated around the world as Samhain (or, in the southern hemispheres, Beltane). It the most common terms, it is the New Year for many of the old religions, Wicca and Druidism at the forefront.
It is, as has been so often written, a time when it is believe that the veil between this world and the next is at its thinnest, when we can most easily communicate with those who have gone ahead of us.
I’ll write a little more about all of this over the next few days as many of our Halloween traditions stem from the observance of Samhain.