And from the other Hemisphere ... here's a copy of my Equinox mail to friends and loved ones ...
The cycle of the year continues. Today the sunshine hours are equal to
the hours of darkness, a moment of the seasons which has been
celebrated for as long as there is a known history of the human race.
This time is associated with celebration of the harvest and
preparation for the winter. The oldest of the Pagan festivities at the
Equinox is known as Mahbon - which is described below.
This is a special time for me as well - as a "pantheistic
cyberneticist" this is a time of importance and significance well
beyond that of any Christian festival ;-)
Happy Equinox, I wish you warmth and firelight and much love.
Mabon is the ancient solar festival that marks the transition from the
light to the dark half of the year, at about the time the Sun enters
Libra. This holiday is observed by many people who follow "the old
ways" that are variously referred to as pagan, Wiccan, or pantheist.
These traditions all share in common a profound respect for Nature and
connection to its cycles.
Mabon (pronounced mah-bun, mah-bon, or may-bon) is both a literal and
metaphoric harvest festival, a time when the fruits of the year's
labor may be enjoyed, and a time to take stock of accomplishments.
There are many legends associated with Mabon. In Celtic mythology,
Mabon was the Young God, abducted and imprisoned, only to return at a
later date. Similarly, the long days of summer are overtaken at the
autumnal equinox, but promise to return at the vernal equinox, with
the celebration of Oestara. This holiday marks the beginning of autumn
- winter is not so far away anymore. Maturity has been reached.
While in folklore, Mabon is associated with the harvesting of herbs,
grains, fruits and vegetables, those of us who do not make our livings
in agriculture can set aside this day as a wonderful time to conduct a
sort of inner, personal harvest festival. Take the time to acknowledge
all of the hard work you have done in your lifetime, and to give
thanks for the hard work of others. Take this time to be grateful for
the labor and sweat, love and perseverance that keep society, your
community, your family and friends, alive. Take time to recognise the
roles you have played as well, and give yourself credit for what
This is also a day to consider the importance of balance in our lives.
On this day, as on the spring equinox, day and night last the same
amount of time. The feminine/lunar night forces and the
masculine/solar day forces are perfectly balanced. This is a good day
to meditate on the marriage of the material and spiritual aspects of
our lives. Libra, after all, is a sign concerned with balancing,
harmonising and uniting. If any aspects of our lives are out of
balance, Mabon is the perfect day to perform a small ritual, or make a
promise to yourself to restore balance and harmony to your life.
Mabon can be observed in many ways, such as tending a garden or
gathering together for a special meal with friends. Expressions of
appreciation to one's elders and remembrances of ancestors are also
appropriate on this powerful day when the fertility of summer begins
to give way to the temporary death of winter. Recognizing this as a
powerfully charged point on the wheel of the year enables one to tap
into Nature's cycles, and to ponder how one's life connects to the
cycles the entire planet shares.