Mabon and Equinox : Celebrate fall harvest for the autumnal equinox

Park with trees and picnic bench in fall, ground covered in orange and red leaves, no people

Photo by B. Monginoux, courtesy of landscape-photo.net

WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 23: The sharp scent of cinnamon and the sweet taste of apple cider marks autumn, and today, astrological events signal the autumnal equinox. Known as Mabon to Pagans and Wiccans, autumn equinox brings the hours of daylight and darkness into balance, after which the number of hours of sunlight each day will wane until the winter solstice.

Harvested gourds, pumpkins and squashes are plentiful; horns of plenty display the bounty of food that has come to symbolize autumn.

Did you know? The term Mabon was coined around 1970, as a reference to a character from Welsh mythology. Nevertheless, the festival’s core rituals are of ancient nature.

Glass of sparkling apple cider with apple and apples in back, high contrast lighting

Sparkling hard cider. Photo by Dennis Wilkinson, courtesy of Flickr

For Pagans and Wiccans, Mabon is the second harvest festival; Lughnassadh precedes it, and Samhain will come later. Family is drawn together, feasts are prepared and individuals look to the dark of winter—a time of rest. (Learn more from Wicca.com.) Cider, wines and herbs are offered to gods while decorations are crafted in red, orange, brown and gold.

MABON: HOW TO …

Autumn’s abundance of harvest foods, combined with a shift to cooler temperatures, has long made it a popular time to reflect, renew and gather.

Looking for a DIY project for autumn? For centuries, people have been making apple dolls and corn dollies at harvest time. Learn how to make applehead dolls and corn dollies, with tutorials from Mother Earth News.

In search of fall recipes? First, check out Bobbie Lewis’s Mabon column, complete with a delicious recipe for apple cake. Want more? You’ll find other options at AllRecipes, Food Network, Taste of Home and Epicurious.

Love the smells of autumn? Bring the scents home with a make-it-yourself scented pinecone wreath.

Gardeners, rejoice! Organic farmer Leonard Moorehead offers tips and insights into making autumn the best time of year for your garden.

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