Halloween Extravaganza: Iona Caldwell: Samhain and Halloween: How a Druid Does Both

When Iona Caldwell asked if she could discuss Halloween from the point of view of a Druid, I jumped at the chance to have this kind of information given to my readers, a topic that I hadn’t had touched on in the history of my Halloween Extravaganza. What she had to say was very interesting, and I hope that y’all learn as much as I did.

Being a mom is hard enough. Being a mom and a Druid – now that might seem impossible!

Going to bed late, rough nights of sleep due to a restless mind of things being left undone, parent/teacher conferences, fundraisers – the list goes on. And these are daily activities.

Then there’s squeezing in the needs of a practicing Druid including (but certainly not limited to) spending time with nature, natural cleansing of the altar, morning and evening rituals, writing a Book of Shadows (not all druids do this, it’s my personal preference), meditating… you get the idea. Then there are times when two holidays (days of power for me) roll around.

Once the holidays get here, things take a drastic change.

Halloween is coming up and we all know what that means: candy, costumes, spooky decor, and delicious treats. That’s for my kids.

Since we don’t get a ton of Trick or Treating around our small town, we typically rely on Trunk or Treating, mall trick or treating and sometimes none at all if the weather is too cold, we have a sick munchkin or it’s raining.

If you are like me, you let your little monsters stay awake late and indulge in some pre-dentist visit inducing carbs waiting for the precious “sugar crash” that seems like it can take hours. It can leave the mind tired and really not wanting to do much other than falling into bed. That’s when Charlie Brown goes on the television and we enjoy some hot cocoa or cider while wrapped in our blankets in front of the fireplace.

For me, it’s the glorious night of Samhain.

This is the time when many things happen for a practicing Druid. The Wild Hunt rides, unsettled spirits walk the Earth, the Veil is thin and sometimes the third eye can get a bit overwhelmed. For those who practice invocation, evocation, moon work, spell work, etc, this can pretty taxing.

Most of my practice happens at night after the kids are asleep and the family tradition of watching Hugh Jackman’s Van Helsing (don’t judge me) is over.

However, like parenting, spiritual practice takes work. Sometimes you have to be willing to take some hits to certain parts of your life (like Netflix binging, gaming, etc) to become more in tune with the Divine. Samhain is the perfect time to commune with crone goddesses and your ancestors. It’s a wonderful time to do divination or rituals of evocation. Maybe you’re Wiccan and have separate ways of practicing altogether and have your own rituals and spell work.

Whatever way you practice, it takes serious devotion.

What I do for any Eightfold Wheel day is always start with a meal of some kind. Being a Druid means communing with family and others, it means networking and learning to balance the different aspects of our lives.

Just like Nature is the perfect balancer, I take my time with my husband and enjoy a meal while watching a movie. We may indulge in some “Witch’s Brew,” baked treats like freshly baked pumpkin bread or apple pies. Whatever we do, we take time to do it together.

After taking some time with the family and the wee hours when they’re all asleep, I typically spend some time letting the day “melt” from my body. It allows my mind to be open to the Divine and clears the space if you will.

This year, I plan to do a ritual of evocation to the Crone Aspect of the Triple Goddess. It can be terrifying to work with her but in the end you can receive amazing insight. I won’t go into exact detail as I wanted to give you a glimpse into how hectic Halloween (Samhain) can be when doing both.

It can be taxing but more importantly, it’s fun!

About the author:

My name is Iona Caldwell. I’m the author of the British Occult Fiction Beneath London’s Fog, which was published by FyreSyde Publishing this month. When I’m not busy weaving worlds of the arcane and dark, I’m spending time out in nature. I love books. My biggest inspirations are H.P. Lovecraft, Stephen King, Neil Gaiman, and Edgar Allen Poe. I blog about many things, but mostly everything bookish.

All of my novels are stand-alone novellas, each with a cast of people I hope my readers will come to love as much as I have.

Beneath London’s Fog

Jonathan is the immortal master of Raven Hollow Manor – a decrepit mansion riddled with superstition, murder and restless ghosts. Beneath it lies a restless malice.

Its previous owner driven mad, violently kills his guests with a rusted ax, creating the perfect venue for Jonathan to seclude himself in a prison of his own device.

When the streets of London begin to run red with blood; the bodies exhibiting disturbing signs and baffling wounds, the identity of the killer remains elusive to police.

The bodies are just the beginning of Jonathan’s troubles. A mysterious letter accusing Jonathan of committing the murders appear, raising suspicion in the police. Hidden beneath the mangled bodies, Jonathan soon realizes he is being forced to face demons he thought died in a forlorn past he attempted to escape. 

One thing Jonathan knows for certain: He must deal with the demons of his past if he is to survive his future. Not only him but those he has come to love as well.

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