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Old 10-20-09   #11
feranaja
 
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Default Re: Samhain

Delicious pumpkin muffins with cranberries.
Prep Time: :

Cook Time: :30

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups flour
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup pumpkin puree
  • 2 cups fresh or frozen cranberries, coarsely chopped
  • 1/2 cup oil
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 1/4 cup molasses
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
Preparation:

Directions for cranberry pumpkin muffins
Combine flour, brown sugar, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt in a medium mixing bowl. Combine remaining ingredients in a separate mixing bowl. Add wet ingredients to dry, mixing just until the dry ingredients are moist. Do not overmix. Generously grease a 12-muffin tin and dust with flour or line with paper muffin cups. Fill muffin cups about 2/3-full with batter. Bake pumpkin muffins in preheated 350 oven for 25 to 30 minutes, or until nicely browned. Remove pumpkin muffins from tins to wire rack to cool. Makes 12 cranberry pumpkin muffins.
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Old 10-20-09   #12
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Default Re: Samhain

I add walnuts to this one and it's wonderful - even better after a day or two. With lots of butter and hot cider!

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 (15 ounce) can pumpkin puree
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 cup vegetable oil
  • 2/3 cup water
  • 3 cups white sugar
  • 3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger





DIRECTIONS

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease and flour three 7x3 inch loaf pans.
  2. In a large bowl, mix together pumpkin puree, eggs, oil, water and sugar until well blended. In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves and ginger. Stir the dry ingredients into the pumpkin mixture until just blended. Pour into the prepared pans.
  3. Bake for about 50 minutes in the preheated oven. Loaves are done when toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.
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Old 10-20-09   #13
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Default Re: Samhain

Quote:
Originally Posted by Eretik View Post
I must wait for Bonfire night [Nov.5th,Guy Fawkes] to experience the full outdoor part of Winternights/Samhain like this, I have no garden and live in a city centre flat with central heating.Hey, it works though and is a good reason for extending the celebration.

Does anyone else have 'Bonfire night' outside the UK ,or a similar event at this time?

http://www.bonfirenight.net/

I love bonfire night almost as much as I love halloween.

Remember remember the 5th November.... I'm sure though some government goons tried to 'rain on the fire' last year so to speak by saying it could be offensive to catholics...
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Old 10-20-09   #14
Lord Ruthven
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Default Re: Samhain

I think for Samhain I will raise magical merry hell and see what bites.
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Old 10-20-09   #15
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I'm printing out the pumpkin recipes tomorrow.

I'm thinking blue pointy hat with big gold star's on,& a blue cape,again with gold stars...Gandalf meet's Roy Wood with some groovy 70's gear.

Sera,a couple of chamois leather's,brown red head band with a single feather would make a cool Princess Hiawatha?
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Old 10-21-09   #16
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Default Re: Samhain

"Remember remember the 5th November.... I'm sure though some government goons tried to 'rain on the fire' last year so to speak by saying it could be offensive to catholics..."

Typical,lol,there's always somebody getting offended,or claiming others willl be.

I grew up in a Catholic community and Halloween and Bonfire night were celebrated in the church halls [bonnie outside of course ,lol, but hey,I was tempted once or twice to try for an indoor one...ohoh] there were parties/dances and food buffets etc.It seems the sensitivies are recent ones,as far as I can tell.

I think the RC line of thought,at least in our parish,was a controlled celebration by the church kept it Christian, so control was in their hands and the money made [tickets/raffles etc.] went to help charity causes,so it was win-win.
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Old 10-21-09   #17
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Speaking of Samhain, I went to a Christian ladies spiritual meeting and we reflected on Samhain and then wrote about it - our leader is such a well-rounded lady, not stuck dogmatically in her Christian beliefs even though I believe she is a Christian minister of some kind, but able to appreciate other paths and combine things to make for interesting spiritual reflections.
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Old 10-21-09   #18
Lord Ruthven
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Default Re: Samhain

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gala View Post
Remember remember the 5th November.... I'm sure though some government goons tried to 'rain on the fire' last year so to speak by saying it could be offensive to catholics...
Of course the government want to stop it. It's the day when, as a nation, we gather together to set off fireworks in celebration of Guy Fawkes being the only man to walk into parliament with a sensible policy.
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Old 10-19-10   #19
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Default Re: Samhain

Adding to this thread, as the day draws near.



A Solitary Samhain
(reposted from branwen's cauldron)

Many covens and circles celebrate this most sacred of pagan holidays as groups, often opening their circles to non-initiates and others who wish to participate. I find myself preferring a solitary ritual, perhaps with some socializing earlier or later in the evening. For me, much of the meaning of Samhain suggests such a practice, though traditionally it is a communal celebration.

Samhain is pronounced as sow-in (in Ireland), sow-een (in Wales), and sav-en (in Scotland). It marks the end of the harvest, the end of the year, and the death of the god. Self-reflection becomes not simply a custom, but a necessity. One cannot (or at least should not) allow the Wheel of the Year to turn without some kind of examination of what has occurred. How have I spent the last year? Did I grow or remain stagnant? Did I live according to the values I claim to embrace? These are questions which must be addressed in solitude and solemnity.

Just as Samhain ends the old year, it must begin the new, though many witches do not celebrate the New Year until Yule. Reflection should continue during this dark time, but reflection should be accompanied by a growing sense of the changes to be made and the light to be sought. I sometimes make many lists during this time -- lists of what I have accomplished and what I still want to accomplish, things I have neglected and those I have tended, and other similar lists. Samhain symbolizes both the past and the future, illuminated by the cycle of the seasons, forever linked as steps on the journey we must all make.

The Goddess tells us: "And you who seek to know Me, know that your seeking and yearning will avail you not, unless you know the Mystery: for if that which you seek, you find not within yourself, you will never find it without." We must look inside ourselves for self-knowledge and for the spirit that will sustain us in life's trials. Silence is one of the keys to seeking truth, for we cannot hear the answers in the midst of this noisy world in which we walk every day, nor in the noise of holiday celebrations however joyous.

Samhain is also said to be the time when the veil between the living and te dead is thinnest, allowing us some communication with those who have departed. How befitting this is for such a time of endings and beginnings. Reflections on death can be as instructive as the self-examinations just mentioned. When we think of those who have died, it reminds us of time passing by and of things we could have or should have done. These reminders, coupled with our lists of past and future actions, encourages us to take our New Year's resolutions far more seriously. We know our time is limited, and most of us have much to do in our allotted time. Most of us have to make a living somehow, but death reminds us that we had better spend some of that time in pursuit of our other dreams lest they be lost in the struggle merely to survive.

Samhain Ritual

The Samhain rituals I follow change a little from year to year. I don't like to have a set of mandatory words or actions that might prevent me from exploring new possibilities in meaning. However, I do include the traditional Samhain rituals of sharing a feast (even if I am alone) and some form of divination. Since it is best that you write/say your own words in performing rituals, I will only include an outline here.

Prepare your house or room

Use black and orange candles, pumpkins (carved or not) and other traditional "Halloween" items if you wish (most are actually traditional for Samhain).

Prepare a table for the Feast of the Dead. It should be covered with a black table cloth and set with black dishes (black paper plates will do just fine). Place a chair at the head of the table, draped in black cloth, to represent the spirit. The spirit's place is set with a plate with a white votive candle on it. Set places for each of the dead that you hope will join you, and place black votive candles on their plates. Plates for the living (in my solitary ritual, just one) are empty, of course, awaiting the feast food to be served.

Food preparation

My feast is usually very simple: bread, fruit, nuts, and juice or wine. If you've invited living guests, it is common to make the feast potluck. However, since the actual feast will take place in silence, try not to have too many things that would have to be passed or requested.

Light the candles and turn out the lights

Call the quarters (ask the Guardians of the Watchtowers to witness and protect your circle).

Cast a circle (use whatever method you've been taught).

Invite the deities

There are certain Goddesses that I always invite to my rituals. It seems especially important to invite them on Samhain, as I will want to thank them for their help during the past year, and of course, ask that they continue to help me in the coming year. If the departed loved ones were especially close to any deities, I invite them as well.

Feast of the Dead

Light the candles on the plates of the dead and the spirit. The feast should take place in silence so that you can think about your departed friends and relatives. Think of their passing and your hopes for their joyous return. If someone is recently departed, try to put aside your sadness and think of that soul as well and happy in the presence of the Goddess.

Speak in silence an invitation to these loved ones, asking them to join in your feast. Use your own words for this. You know these individuals and can speak to them in a way to which they are likely to respond.

Sit at your table and eat the food you have brought to it. Feel the presence of those who have joined you and rejoice in their presence. Allow them to speak to you of whatever they want to communicate. Take as long as you wish at the table, listening to those you have invited and speaking to them in silence.

When the feast is over, thank your spirit guests for coming, bid them farewell, extinguish the candles on the plates, and leave the table.

Banishings and Resolutions

Now is the time to bring out one of those lists! Before Samhain, write a list of things from the last year that you want to banish: bad habits and addictions, unkind feelings toward others, unkind feelings toward yourself.... anything you do not want to carry over to the New Year. Light a black candle and burn the list, asking the Goddess and God to help you get rid of these and all negative things in your life. If you prefer, you can put about 1/4 cup of alcohol in a cauldron, light it, and burn the paper there. Speak to the deities (you can speak aloud now) about your sincere wish to remove these things from your life. Use a banishing chant, if you wish.

Now you should speak to the deities about those things you want to bring into your life in the New Year. I do these things rather informally, but there are many poems and prose pieces in books that you might want to use. Asking the deities for future rewards must be accompanied by resolutions as to how you will accomplish your goals. They will help you if you are sincere in your efforts to help yourself.

Divination

Because the two worlds are so close at Samhain, it is the perfect time for divination. I prefer to use a cauldron of water for scrying, since the cauldron seems to fit the mood of Samhain (not to mention Halloween tradition). You may prefer Tarot cards, a pendulum, or runes....whatever method works best for you. Obviously, the goal of this divination is to see what lies ahead in the next year.

Meditation

All of my rituals include some form of meditation. This is when I ask my personal Goddesses to guide me, advise me, and generally keep me on the right path. I also use this time to thank them in a more personal way than by reciting a poem of thanksgiving. At Samhain, I thank them for all their gifts in the last year and ask them to continue helping me in the New Year.

Sometimes this part of the ritual takes the form of a shamanic journey in which I am taken to a far away place (sometimes familiar, sometimes not) and where I may be given signs that will help me know what I should do (either in general or in specific situations). Take as long with your meditation as you need.

Thank the Deities

Give thanks to the deities you have invited by offering them food. I usually say something like "all things come from the Earth and to the Earth they must return." Whatever food and drink I offer (usually bread and wine), I eat a little and save the rest to place or pour on the Earth later.

Open the circle

Thank and dismiss the Guardians

Blessed Be!

A word about invitations to the dead

For my solitary Samhain Feast of the Dead, I invite not only departed humans but special animals as well. I doubt that this is customary since the feast is usually for one's ancestors. However, when one of my beloved pets has passed away, his or her passing leaves an empty place in my household and in my life, just as the passing of a person would. I choose to believe that the Goddess takes these creatures and cares for them as She would any human. They are far purer in heart than any human could be, and their love is perfect and unconditional. Surely their spirits deserve whatever rewards await the rest of us. So, at Samhain, I invite these loving creatures to join in my feast where I can once again feel their presence and their uncomplicated devotion to those they love. In their honor, I also invite either Bast, the Egyptian Cat Goddess, or Diana, Goddess of the hunt and mistress of dogs, both wild and tame.
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Old 10-19-10   #20
Brigidrose
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Default Re: Samhain

I love this time of year. I am more excited as it draws near.
I am having a costume party with some friends, we will have a fire and honor those who have passed. Lots of food and drink... after of course
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