Sabbats/Holidays

Second of the three harvest festivals. It is the pagan thanksgiving and the understanding that the blessings of the earth are to be shared with gratitude. The storing and eating of this harvest prepares us for the winter months. 

Narrative: The Lord reaches the end of his fertility and the end of his life. 

Animals/Mythical beings: Gnomes, Sphinx, Minotaurs, Cyclops, Andamans, and Gulons. 
Activities and rituals: Protection, prosperity, security, and self-confidence. Also those of harmony and balance, making wine, gathering dried herbs, plants, seeds and seed pods, walking in the woods, scattering offerings in harvested fields, offering libations to trees, adorning burial sites with leaves, acorns, and pine cones to honor those who have passed over. 

Gemstones: Yellow Topaz, Carnelian, Sapphire, Yellow Agate, Lapis Lazuli, and Amethyst. Also, river or stream stones which have been submerged for the Summer may be used. 

Symbols: Wine, gourds, pine cones, acorns, grains, corn, apples, pomegranates, vines such as ivy, dried seeds, and horns of plenty.

Food: Grapes, Acorns, Wheat Bread, Goat, Indian Corn, Horn of Plenty, Cornbread, Corn, Root Crops (ie Onions, Carrots, Potatoes, etc.), Nuts, Pomegranates, Dried Fruits, Apples, Beans, and Squash. 

Herbs and Flowers: Grapes, Heather, Blackberries, Sloe, Crab Apples, Pears. goldenrod, peony, nasturtium, clover blossom, yarrow, heliotrope, boneset, vervain, Queen Anne's lace, myrtle, rose, sunflower, poppy, milkweed, Irish moss, mushroom, wheat, corn, rye, oat, barley, rice, garlic, onion, basil, mint, aloe, acacia, meadowsweet, apple leaf, raspberry leaf, strawberry leaf, bilberry leaf, blueberry leaf, mugwort, hops, holly, comfrey, marigold, grape vine, ivy, hazelnut, blackthorn, elder, bee pollen.

Beltane is a festival of love, reckless abandon, and the climax of Spring. This is the turning point where spring begins to turn into summer. One of many traditions to celebrate may day is with the reckless night of love. Usually between young lovers, it is the only day when lovers can take pleasure with each other without the community having any judgments.

Narrative: The Lord and Lady come together in their personal Union. It is the marriage of dualities.

Animals: Swallow, dove, swan, Cats, lynx, leopard

Colors: Red, White, Brown, Pink, Green

Activities and Rituals: fertilize, nurture and boost existing goals, games, activities of pleasure, leaping bonfires, making garlands, May Pole dance, planting seeds, walking one’s property, feasting

Stones/Gems: Emerald, malachite, amber, orange carnelian, sapphire, rose quartz

Symbols & Decorations: May Pole, fires, fertility, flowers, growing things, ploughs, cauldrons of flowers

Foods: Dairy, bread, cereals

Flowers, Herbs: Lily of the valley, foxglove, rose, broom, Hawthorne, Dittany of Crete, elder, mint, mugwort, thyme, yarrow, almond tree/shrub, clover, ivy, marigold, meadowsweet, rowan, sorrel, woodruff 

Litha/Midsummer - June 21st/22nd - Power of the Sun

Ostara - March 21st/22nd - The Festival of New Life

How a practitioner chooses to celebrate and work a Sabbat is up to an individual. Rituals, spells, and more information on different traditions are widely available on the internet. This basic information in this course is to help you get started and give a foundation. From this you can grow.

First of the three harvest festivals. The first fruits of the earth are celebrated and given thanks for. 
Traditions: bread is baked in various shapes, bread in the shape of a man is eaten, spells dealing with baked bread are crafted

Narrative: Through union, the Lord and Lady reach their full fertility and begin to ripen for first harvest.

Animals/Mythical beings: Griffins, roosters, calves, centaurs, phoenix 

Activities and rituals: At this time, witches cast spells for connectedness, career, health, and financial gain. Spells for abundance are completely appropriate now. As the sun is growing weaker, it is a good time to do grounding and sun meditations, then use the golden rays of the sun (gathered during meditation) in spellcasting, games, the traditional riding of poles/staves, country fairs, breaking bread with friends, making corn dollys, harvesting herbs for charms/rituals, Lughnasadh fire with sacred wood & dried herbs, feasting, competitions, spear tossing, gathering flowers for crowns, fencing/swordplay, games of skill, martial sports, chariot races, hand-fastings, trial marriages, dancing round a corn mother (doll) 

Gemstones: aventurine, citrine, peridot, sardonyx, Cat's-eye, golden topaz, obsidian, moss agate, rhodochrosite, clear quartz, marble, slate, granite, lodestone, Carnelian 

Symbols/Decorations: Corn, cornucopias, red, yellow flowers, sheaves of grain (wheat, barley, oats), first fruits/vegetables of garden labor, corn dollies, baskets of bread, spear, cauldron, sickle, scythe, threshing tools, sacred loaf of bread, harvested herbs, bonfires, bilberries, God figures made of bread or cookie dough, phallic symbols 

Food: Homemade breads, barley cakes, nuts, crab apples, rice, lamb, elderberry wine, ale,cider, beer, meadowsweet tea , Grains, Berry Foods and any locally ripe produce. 

Herbs and Flowers: Grapes, Heather, Blackberries, Sloe, Crab Apples, Pears. goldenrod, peony, nasturtium, clover blossom, yarrow, heliotrope, boneset, vervain, Queen Anne's lace, myrtle, rose, sunflower, poppy, milkweed, Irish moss, mushroom, wheat, corn, rye, oat, barley, rice, garlic, onion, basil, mint, aloe, acacia, meadowsweet, apple leaf, raspberry leaf, strawberry leaf, bilberry leaf, blueberry leaf, mugwort, hops, holly, comfrey, marigold, grape vine, ivy, hazelnut, blackthorn, elder, bee pollen.

Yule - Dec 21st - The Festival of the Unconquered Sun

Litha or Midsummer is the summer solstice. This day is the longest day of the year. This represents the power of the sun at its peak. It is a great time to celebrate the masculine and solar associations. 

Narrative: The Lord and Lady mature into their union.

Animals: butterflies, caterpillars, sea creatures, wren, robin, horses, cattle, satyrs, faeries, firebird, dragon, thunderbird

Activities and Rituals: bonfire leaping, herb drying, protection, luck, health, transformation, community, career, and relationships

Stones/Gems: all green stones, especially Emerald and Jade, Lapis, Diamond

Symbols & Decorations: flowers and fresh early garden produce, the spear or sword of the sun god and the bountiful cauldron of the goddess ringed in flowers, solar cross or sun symbols, fireworks, sea shells

Foods: all early summer fruits and vegetables, ale and mead, honey cakes, rose ice cream, melted cheese dishes, mangoes, whipped cream on fruit, red wine, strawberries

Herbs & Plants: Apple, Chamomile, Chicory, Chickweed, Mugwort, Mistletoe, Heather, Peony, Pine, Roses, Vervain, Heartsease, Houseleek, Lavender, Rowan and Saint John’s Wort​

Yule is considered the beginning of the wheel of the year in some paths.  Others start their year at Samhain. Yule celebrates the rebirth and unyielding light of the sun. Many gods are reported to be born at or around this time to be associated with this energy. A few of the more famous are Horus, Mythra, Dionysus, and Jesus the Christ. 

Narrative: Yule begins the story as the Lady gives birth to the Lord-as-child. Having conceived of him in the past month, the Lady begins her birthing on the 21st (the longest night of the year) and at sunrise the Lord emerges as the new sun on the horizon. 

Animals/Mythical beings:  goat, reindeer stag, squirrels, yule cat, Sacred White Buffalo, trolls, phoenix, yule elf, jule gnome, squirrels, wren/robin

Gemstones:  cat’s eye, ruby, diamond, garnet, bloodstone

Colors:  gold, silver, red, green, white

Rituals/Magicks:  personal renewal, world peace, honoring family & friends, Festival of light, meditation

Customs:  lights, gift-exchanging, singing, feasting, resolutions, new fires kindled, strengthening family & friend bonds, generosity, yule log, hanging mistletoe, apple wassailing, burning candles, Yule tree decorating; kissing under mistletoe; needfire at dawn vigil; bell ringing/sleigh-bells; father yule

Foods:  nuts, apple, pear, caraway cakes soaked with cider, pork, orange, hibiscus or ginger tea, roasted turkey, nuts, fruitcake, dried fruit, cookies, eggnog, mulled wine

Herbs:  blessed thistle, evergreen, moss, oak, sage, bay, bayberry, cedar, pine, frankincense, ginger, holly, ivy, juniper, mistletoe, myrrh, pinecones, rosemary, chamomile, cinnamon, valarion, yarrow

Copyright 2016. West Central Florida Pagan Alliance, Inc. All rights reserved.


Imbolc - February 2nd - The festival of the Maiden

Samhain - October 31st - The Third Harvest - Honoring the Ancestors

Final harvest of the three harvest festivals. This festival honors the lives of those who have passed from the waking world. Offerings of food, spirits, and water are left out for the departed loved ones who come to visit. Some practitioners look at this as the New Year - others place the Pagan New Year at Yule.

Narrative: The Lady turns to her elder years and descends into the Underworld to retrieve the Lord. 

Animals: Stag, cat, bat, owl, jackal, elephant, ram, scorpion, heron, crow, robin

Activities and Rituals: End of summer, honoring of the dead,scrying, divination, last harvest, meat harvest

Stones/Gems: Black obsidian, jasper, carnelian, onyx, smoky quartz, jet, bloodstone

Symbols & Decorations: Apples, autumn flowers, acorns, bat, black cat, bones, corn stalks, colored leaves, crows, death/dying, divination and the tools associated with it, ghosts, gourds, Indian corn, jack-o-lantern, nuts , oak leaves, pomegranates, pumpkins, scarecrows, scythes, waning moon

Foods: Apples, apple dishes, cider, meat (traditionally this is the meat harvest) especially pork, mulled cider with spices, nuts-representing resurrection and rebirth, nuts, pomegranates, potatoes, pumpkins, pumpkin bread, pumpkin pie, roasted pumpkin seeds, roasted pumpkin seeds, squash.

Herbs and Flowers: Almond, apple leaf , autumn joy sedum, bay leaf, calendula, Cinnamon, Cloves cosmos, garlic, ginger, hazelnut, hemlock cones, mandrake root, marigold, mums, mugwort (to aid in divination), mullein seeds, nettle, passionflower, pine needles, pumpkin seeds, rosemary (for remembrance of our ancestors), rue, sage, sunflower petals and seeds, tarragon, wild ginseng, wormwood

Imbolc, also known as Candlemas, is a festival of lights. It is still dark most of the day, but the sun is gaining vigor. At this time the first stirrings of spring can be felt. It is a time of purification and spring cleaning in preparation for spring. To traditional witches this is a time for pledges, initiations and dedications. 

Narrative: With the Lord born, the Lady goes through her own transformation. She shakes off her past and emerges as Lady-as-maiden. Here she begins her initiation into the women's mysteries and magick. 

Animals & Mythical Beings: Firebird, dragon, groundhog, deer, burrowing animals, ewes, robin, sheep, lamb, other creatures waking from hibernation.
Gemstones: Amethyst, garnet, onyx, turquoise.

Colors/Candles: Brown, pink, red, orange, white, lavender, pale yellow, silver.

Rituals & Magicks: Cleansing; purification, renewal, creative inspiration, purification, initiation, candle work, house & temple blessings, welcoming Brigid, feast of milk & bread.

Customs: Lighting candles, seeking omens of Spring, storytelling, cleaning house, bonfires, indoor planting, stone collecting, candle kept burning dusk till dawn; hearth re-lighting.

Foods: Dairy, spicy foods, raisins, pumpkin, sesame & sunflower seeds, poppyseed bread/cake, honey cake, pancakes, waffles, herbal tea.

Herbs: Angelica, basil, bay, benzoin, celandine, clover, heather, myrrh, all yellow flowers, willow.

Mabon - Sept 21st/22nd - Second Harvest

Lammas/Lughnasadh - August 1st - The First Harvest

​Beltane - May 1st - Union of Lovers

Ostara marks the equilibrium of light and dark. This is the day when day and night are in equal measures but in which the day will begin over taking the night. This is a celebration, also, of new life as baby animals are being born and the land seems to be coming back to life. Fertility is celebrated around this time. 

Narrative: The Lady-as-maiden begins to grow  into an adolescent and the Lord-as-child grows into puberty. Ostara is a time where the Lord and Lady hold in balance at the same age and same stages in life. 

Animals: rabbits, hares, robins, dragons (associated with eggs the earth and fertility), lambs, chicks

Stones/Gems: Jasper, amethyst, aquamarine, bloodstone and red jasper.

Colors: Green, Yellow

Activities and Rituals: planting, welcoming spring, coloring eggs, making/wearing new clothing, fertility rites, rituals of balance, herb work – magical, medicinal, cosmetic, culinary and artistic, spells for prosperity/fertility, new beginnings, potential, action

Symbols & Decorations: four leaf clover, baskets, eggs, lambs, flowers, chicks, bunnies, budding twigs, flowers, pussy willows, sprouting bulbs, colored ribbons

Foods: jelly eggs (jelly beans), chocolates, lamb, eggs, seeds, leafy green vegetables, spiced or flower cupcakes, fruits, hot cross buns, sprouts, honey cakes, unleavened bread

Herbs/Flowers: Honeysuckle, Iris, Peony, Violet, Woodruff, Gorse, Olive, Iris, Narcissus, Daffodils, Jonquils, Primrose, Forsythia, Crocus, all spring flowers, pine tree