On the occasion of the autumnal equinox, a festival called Mabon is celebrated. In the northern hemisphere, it is observed on the eve of September 22, and in the southern hemisphere, on March 22.
Mabon Autumnal Equinox — Mythology and Folklore
Astrologically, the length of day and night are equal at this time, as the Sun enters the sign of Libra.
The Harvest and the Festival of Avalon are other names for this event. The symbol of Mabon is the cornucopia or “horn of plenty”.
The second harvest is celebrated during the Festival of Mabon (Welsh word meaning “Good Son”; he was a Welsh God who represents the male principle of fertility).
It is very important to give thanks to God and Goddesses for the blessings they have granted us so far and for what we have harvested throughout our lives.
We must enter into spiritual communion and rejoice in the many blessings that only come from being alive. Mean Fo’mhair, or the second harvest, was what the Druids called it. They offered libations of cider and wine to the trees in homage to the God of the Forest, who was symbolized by a green man.
It is a time to thank God and Goddesses for the favors they have granted us so far and to reflect on the past and the achievements it has brought.
It is a feast of joy that honors the bounty and abundance of the Earth. The grain harvest that began on Lughnasadh is now completed as the second harvest.
But it is also a period of balance, as the forces of light and darkness come together on equal footing. The equinox has arrived and, from that time until Yule, darkness (winter solstice) will increase.
The agricultural tradition of the God of Fertility
The fertility deity, who was at his strongest during Lughnasadh, is aging, losing vigor, and will soon pass away with the arrival of Samhain, on November 1.
Mabon is the time to prepare to bid him farewell and think about the circle of life (birth, growth, maturity, and death). Time has no creator, as in any traditional pre-Christian society, but generates itself through an endless sequence of cycles.
The message of the feast of Mabon is to remember and recognize that everything has an end and to understand that every end also heralds a new beginning.
On this day, seasonal vegetables, cereals, and fruits are traditionally consumed, mostly prepared with corn. Traditions of this time include stomping, picking, and harvesting grapes. Creating wreaths for the ancient god with ivy and hazel and gathering herbs.
Meaning of cornucopias and the “horn of plenty”
Autumnal tones such as reds, oranges, golds, browns, and violets are used in this celebration to help people tune in to the energies of the day.
Numerous gods are venerated:
- Demeter, Persephone, and Hades;
- The Muses;
- Dionysus and Bacchus (gods of wine);
- The goddess Morgana, the serpent woman;
- and Hotei.
In addition to all representations of the Mother Goddess, who will now assume the form of an Elder. As a representation of the Sun God and abundance, corn is widely used.
Interestingly, there is a tradition of making corn dolls, also known as corn dollies, which represent the Mother Goddess and female sexuality. This is achieved by tying the corn cob cover with strings to form a human shape, and there you have your representation of the goddess.
At the next Mabon festival, you burn it in the fire after keeping it in a safe place for yourself for a whole year. In this way, you initiate a new cycle in your life and invite prosperity to saturate you.
Autumn Equinox signals the beginning of a quiet season
The height of summer has passed and the leaves on the trees are beginning to turn golden. Nature is slowly inviting us to relax and take a break before the arduous winter months arrive.
We should rejoice during this celebration and reflect on the blessings that life has bestowed upon us, as well as the lessons we have learned along the way.
The best-aspected rituals are those that deal with the action of grace, blessings from the earth, blessings and protection, letting go of bad habits or situations, and searching our soul for what we wish to alter or improve. Our mentality should be one of gratitude to the Divine.
Mabon in Greek mythology
This celebration is also known as Modron, the earth’s mother. According to the myth, Mabon, son of Modron, is born on the night of the equinox and disappears three nights later.
When Modron’s daughter Kore disappeared while picking flowers, Modron’s grief was comparable to that of the Greek goddess Demeter. Demeter laments and searches for her for days throughout the cosmos.
Finally, the all-seeing sun, Helios, tells her that Core was abducted by Hades to the realm of the dead to serve as his queen.
From then on, Kore will be called Persephone. Demeter, the goddess of crops, becomes enraged and stops the fertility of the earth. As a result, crops fail, life is exhausted and the green turns ochre.
In a last-ditch effort, Zeus finally convinces Demeter and Hades to reach a compromise whereby Persephone spends half the year with her mother on earth and the other half as queen of the underworld with her husband, giving rise to the seasons.
When Persephone is not present, the world becomes dreary and Demeter’s grief gives way to winter. Life shines again when Persephone returns to earth to the joy of her mother.
Mabon, which also marks the beginning of autumn, is also the day when Persephone returns to the underworld. The Major Mysteries of Eleusis were celebrated at the beginning of the autumn season.
With information from adivinario.com