Blood Moon & Samhain, October 28/31, 2023

It is Autumn, the leaves on the trees are turning to a myriad of shades of orange, red, gold, brown, and bronze – the final blazon of colour before the darkness of winter.

Blood Moon; this is the full moon directly before Samhain / Hallowe’en. A time when the animals are culled. Their blood is rich, warm, full-bodied. A time when the apples are the sweetest, the nuts are fleshy and sumptuous. The grapes are being made into wine. All in preparation for the winter.

Create a mandala with fruits of the season. In the centre place a red candle. And next to the mandala a chalice of red wine. Open your circle as usual. Imagine friends joining you.

Blood moon meditation.

Sit comfortably around the mandala and visualise the circle around you.

Then light the candle(s) in the mandala. Contemplate on how the plants and trees came to fruition. The hours of growing the effort made to produce the harvest.

How does the body produce blood? What is blood? What is a blood sacrifice? What is a blood rite / Rite of Passage?

Imagine blood circulating around your body – be part of the bloodstream… the red river of life, swirling, spiralling, you enter a trance – only hearing your heartbeat in the background.

Slowly, slowly you come back to normal consciousness.

Chant: Blood to blood, Heart to heart, Spirit to Spirit… with love  

Imagine now walking in a long procession with a lantern… leave the circle in your mind’s eye at the open door in the West. See everyone joining the procession, each adding their own light. You will find that it is easier to focus on the person’s light in front of you. As you look back the chain of lights looks like a snake winding its way across the land.

You walk for a while remembering what has happened this last year. Also, remember how things were at Beltane when the Earth was teeming with life.

After a while you come to a cave. You all sit around the opening waiting for everyone to arrive. Sit in a semi-circle and put your lantern in front of you. All is silent. Feel the calmness and the occasional brush of wind. It is cold and you pull your cloak around you to keep warm. You notice a small fire in the brazier/fire dish in front of the cave, the orange embers glowing eerily.

You are not quite sure of what to expect but you know you have been called here. You feel calm.

Everyone has arrived now. Look around the half circle… some people you know, others you don’t.

Your eyes are well-used to the dim light now. You see in the opening of the cave an old man appears, also holding a lantern. He reminds you of the Hermit…

He says:

                         ‘I am the God who waits
                        In the dead of the Year, in the Dark of life
                        In the depths of the wood where no birds sing
                        There will you rest again in my hand                       

                        Be fearless to look upon my death’s head
                        For I have other faces, and another hand
                        To give again that which I take                       

                        Come gladly to my call;
                        The Great Mother holds my promise
                        And no thieves shall steal from you,
                        Nor evil ones harm you
                        In the compass of my hand.

                        Remember you trusted me in the Spring –
                        Green child places, finding enchantment,
                        Found me merry in Summer attendance
                        when you wed
                        Feared not to meet Me in Autumn forest hunt,
                        Shrink not from Me in the Winter snow.

                        Have you not seen the return of life to the Earth?
                        Safe in My keeping?
                        Will I do less for you My children?                       

                        I am the Great Lord of Death who waits for you
                        Have faith in Life and trust in Me.
                        As the circle of the year
                        Brings forth the time of My domain
                        Take Me to your hearts
                        As you have ever been in mine.’

Listen to His words and open your heart.

As you let your spirit go forth you see the spirit of loved ones who have gone before. Welcome them.

They may want to tell you something or ask you something. Let them speak and listen.

Additional: If you want, prick your finger and let a drop of blood fall into the wine. As you drink the wine remember the bonds created by Blood Brothers and Sisters.

Thank the Gods for letting you share this moment.

When you are ready sit down and close the circle, as usual.


Blood moon medallion, from the Silver Circle Moon Calendar:

Note from Merlin about the Blood Moon: “The Celts started their year with Samhain or the Blood Moon, and I assume that, depending on the Blood Moon being early or late with respect to what was happening in nature, the priest or priestess would insert the thirteenth moon, the Ice Moon, in the middle of Winter, in order to align the moons again with the start of the next cycle: Imbolc, birth. In this way, normal people could use the cycle to keep track of past, present and future.”

This year, 2023, Blood Moon is nearly aligned directly with Samhain. The poem sometimes called the ‘Samhain God Charge’ is in fact called ‘The Dolmen’ and is by Reg Hinchcliffe, written in 1990.

See for more information the article: The Samhain God Charge… or why accreditation is important.

Over Morgana

"Morgana is Anglo/Dutch and lives in the Netherlands. She is a practising Gardnerian HPS. Over the years, she has facilitated a variety of Wiccan groups. She is co-editor of the international and bilingual "Wiccan Rede" magazine, which was launched in 1980 and is coordinator of Silver Circle, a Wiccan network in the Netherlands. As International Coordinator for PFI she travels extensively giving talks and workshops about Wicca and Paganism."
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