Mabon is celebrated on the autumn equinox (around September 22 in the northern hemisphere / around March 20 in the southern hemisphere).
This is the second of three harvest festivals (the other two are Lammas/Lughnasadh and Samhain) which during this time we begin to see the rewards and results of our hard work that we have done.
Mabon is where we can see the harvest of our labour. If you’ve been working all year ‘round, planting seeds in your life and cultivating them, this is where we can see the results.
This is a good time to start reviewing old journal entries, re-read books and review tarot or other divination readings from the past year.
We begin to see how much we’ve grown and we begin to think about what we want to cultivate by this time next year.
Some plants are planted during this time of year so that they will grow and bloom in the spring after the snow has melted.
Autumn is a good time to think about long term plans and what we want to achieve in the next four quarters of the year.
Samhain is usually thought as the time to look back on the past year and to look at the upcoming year.
Mabon is the first our chance to do that.
The time between Mabon and Samhain is the perfect time to do so. A full year review and look ahead can’t fully happen in just one night or two.
This requires work and dedication to review the past year, make goals for the next year and develop a plan to do so.
Ways to Celebrate Mabon
There are several ways to celebrate Mabon and welcome the change of season. Here are a few ideas for celebrating and honouring Mabon and the Autumn Equinox:
Gods and Goddesses associated with Autumn and the Harvest can be honoured and worked with during this time of year to give thanks for your abundance and to work towards prosperity, good health and protection.
Deities that are commonly associated with Autumn / Harvest, wine and the hunt (but by far not a complete list):
The Dark Goddess is also honoured at this time of year and through until Samhain on October 31. Here is a post about Finding the Dark Goddess.
Rituals can have a variety of meaning depending on your tradition. Rituals can be an everyday habit or task that is done at this time to mark the occasion or it can be spiritual. Many times it can be both spiritual and habitual.
This could mean decorating your home, preparing certain foods, etc. Anything that is done each time around this time of year can also be traditional or ritualistic to celebrate this time of year.
Prepare an Autumn Altar
Depending on your tradition and practice, an Autumn altar can be anywhere and any place. This can be on a table, on a shelf, counter or even a dresser.
Autumn vegetables such as maize, apples, pumpkins, squashes and gourds can be added to the altar to create a decorative altar. Adding images of harvest and autumnal deities can also be added if desired.
Candles and/or cloths in autumn colours such gold, dark yellow, orange, red, brown or even black can add an autumn feel.
There’s no shortage of autumn decorating supplies at department stores and craft stores to add autumn flare and feeling to your home or work space.
Take advantage of the season to pick up some decorative fall items that can be used year after year.
Many people associate cleaning house with springtime (i.e. “spring cleaning”), but autumn is also a good time to prepare for the winter.
Cleaning the house, windows, carpets, floors, walls, chimneys, etc. and opening the windows to clear out any stale air from circulated air conditioning can help to celebrate this time of year.
While cleaning the house physically, it’s also a good time to clean the house spiritually. Use white sage or your favourite method to clean your home.
You can add or use essential oils, magic washes and/or consecrate your cleaning supplies while cleaning to add extra protection, prosperity, etc. to your home.
For additional protection, add some salt or black salt outside your entrances and ground floor windows.
Magick & Spells
Magick and spells for prosperity, abundance, protection and preparation for the colder months can be done at this time.
Try natural elements such as leaves, nuts, acorns, pumpkins/pumpkin seeds, etc. in your spell work to use the most of the season and incorporate nature into your work.
Apples can be used as the apple has a long history and commonly associated with autumn. Read about apple magick for more details about using apples in your practice at this time of year.
Go out into nature and collect natural items that have fallen on the ground.
If you want to make a wand out of a branch, ask permission from the tree first to see if it is OK before cutting a branch. Fallen branches can also make ideal wands as well without cutting a tree.
Spend time outdoors and recite your prayers or spell into the autumn winds. Write a wish on a fallen leaf, then release it to the winds to carry your wish to come true.
The tarot can be a great way to reflect about the past season, the current season and the season to come.
Spend time to reflect on what this year has brought and what plans are in store until the end of the calendar year.
Here’s a simple five card Mabon Tarot Spread for this time of year to help with the theme of Mabon and the autumnal season:
Feel free to arrange the cards for the Mabon Tarot Spread in any way that you’d like:
- What am I harvesting?
- What is coming to an end soon?
- What do I have bountifully?
- What is to be planted now for next year?
- What am I thankful for?
Mabon is the second of the harvest festivals and can be a time as we retreat further into reflection as we prepare for Samhain and winter that will follow.
Mabon / the Autumnal Equinox is a bountiful time that we can begin to share our harvest, rewards and blessings with those close to us and around us.
No matter how you celebrate the autumn season, autumnal equinox or Mabon, enjoy the blessings that have come your way.
Stacey & the Tarot Pugs
Images designed in Canva.