Samhain is the Pagan New Year and the cross-quarter point halfway between the Autumnal Equinox (Mabon) and the Winter Solstice (Yule). It falls on or around October 31st astrologically, but most Pagans celebrate it on this date to correspond with the secular festival Hallowe’en with which it has a lot in common.

The energies of Samhain are magical, because it is the time when the veil between our earthly dimension and the higher dimensions is thought to be at its thinnest. This makes it a prime time for contact with our angels, spirit guides or passed over loved ones, which can range from full-blown clairvoyant or clairaudient experiences, to dreams, to receiving beautiful signs and gifts such as smells that remind us of loved ones, pennies from heaven, feathers, repeated words, images or messages, or a “nudge” to buy a particular crystal, book or spiritual workshop which will benefit us in some way. This is why the secular Hallowe’en celebration focuses on witches, ghosts, ghouls, vampires, and other non-earthly or magical beings. It also corresponds with the Mexican festival of the Day of the Dead which occurs on November 2nd.

Due to the energetic thinning of the veil, this is a fantastic time for divination by any method you choose, be it channelling, automatic writing, oracle cards, tarot, palmistry, runes, tea leaves or anything else. Guidance may come easier, sharper or clearer or simply prove to be more accurate in the long run. It is also a great time for setting wishes and intentions for the year to come, as they can be more easily whispered into the ears of our angels and spirit guides, and as it is the Pagan New Year and a fresh start.

It is also a day to honour your ancestors and the loved ones you knew in life who are now passed over to the higher dimensions. This may be done by lighting a candle for them in your window, both in remembrance and to light the way home for them, or setting a place for them at the table for your Samhain evening meal. You may alternatively wish to say a prayer for their peace and healing and to hear their wisdom.

Pay attention to your dreams on and around Samhain while the veil is thin – they may be particularly lucid or loaded with meaning!

The traditional pumpkin lanterns or Jack O’Lanterns carved at Samhain make a great and fun family project, especially if you have children, and they likely originate as a method of scaring away evil spirits by carving the grotesque features into the pumpkin, on this night when the spirits supposedly roam the earth.  We use them as the focal point for our Hallowe’en windowsill decorations, which we put out to let the local children know we welcome trick or treaters.



I know we are several days away from Hallowe’en yet, but I wanted to post for you the rituals that I do every Hallowe’en, so that if you fancy doing them you can make sure you have the things you need in advance.


Each year I make a witch’s ladder on Hallowe’en. It’s basically a focused way of setting intentions or making wishes for the year ahead, because Samhain – the traditional, Pagan festival on which Hallowe’en has been placed – is the Pagan New Year.

You need 3 ribbons which each represent to you a different area of your life. The colour or the pattern could be representative of the areas of life you are setting intentions or wishes for. You may also wish to include a charm or pendant from an old piece of jewellery which represents one or more of your wishes.

So, for example, red or pink ribbons could represent love and romance. Sparkly or sequinned ribbons could indicate more magic, passion or miracles in your life. White or purple ribbons could represent spiritual growth and development, the path of ascension, increasing psychic gifts. Orange, gold or green ribbons could represent health, energy, healing, balance or abundance. Blue ribbons could represent career and life purpose. Black ribbons could represent psychic protection. Some patterns might remind you of a particular geographical area you wish to visit or a particular energy – eg angels, elementals, faeries, unicorns – you wish to work with. Some symbols – such as roses for love – might evoke the area of life you have a wish for. I used an elephant charm on the ladder with the wish to conceive a daughter, because elephants are linked with fertility, as well as a pink baby ribbon. I used an Archangel Raphael charm on last year’s ladder and I have had immense healing this year.

I have done this for several years now and each year at least two of the three things has manifested, including getting a good job, having my contract renewed, money luck and abundance, success with my spiritual work, conceiving a healthy baby girl, improved health and healing, and even my wish for twin flame reunion which I made last year to some extent, as it has happened at fifth dimensional level up to now. There has been the odd thing that has not manifested, but in retrospect I have been able to see why – it just wasn’t for my highest good. So there is some element of trust in your angels, guides and God with this ritual, too, but it is a powerful one.

You take your three ribbons and tie a knot in them at one end. I usually try to do this so that they form a loop at the top to hang it up with. You then plait the three ribbons. As you move each piece of ribbon into the plait, you repeat to yourself, mentally or aloud, the intention or wish you have attached to that piece of ribbon. When you get to the bottom of the plait, remember to attach any charms or pieces of jewellery you wanted to include before you reach the end of the ribbon, and put a knot in the bottom too. When the ladder is complete, repeat your 3 wishes or intentions one last time and say “So mote it be” or “And so it is” or “Amen”.
You then need to take down last year’s ladder if you still have one, and give thanks for the manifestation or partial manifestation of last year’s wishes and thanks for protecting you from things that do not serve you if anything has not manifested. Set the intention that your angels, guides and God will only manifest what is in your highest good and affirm that with them all things are possible and you are a magnet for miracles and now accept with gratitude their miracles in your life. Then hang up the new ladder for the coming year in a window or on or around your spiritual altar.

As Hallowe’en is a great time for divination too, you may wish to draw oracle cards for yourself around the wishes you have made.

witchs ladder


I have to say I have done this spell sporadically over the last few years, and the years I have done it I have definitely noticed have been more fun, more exciting and more lucky than years where I have not.

This depends on you carving out a pumpkin to make a Jack O’Lantern, and keeping hold of the seeds.

Place the seeds in a bowl and surround it with orange, gold or white candles – tea-lights are fine. You can decide the number yourself, but I usually use five and make a pentacle type shape with them. Take a few minutes to visualise golden rain showering down upon your house and all its occupants. Include any loved ones you especially wish to who do not live in your house, too.

Then, while lighting the candles, say 9 times, “All that is good on this All Hallows’ Eve, will shower us all with this magic I weave, so mote it be.” Then let the candles burn down – another reason to use tea-lights. (Obviously think of your fire safety – if you’ve used larger candles, just let them burn until you are going to bed and then extinguish them safely).
The spell assures an abundance of prosperity, luck and love in the year to come for those you have included.

pumpkinseed spell

Both of these rituals are best done as close to midnight as possible. I have always just done them in the evening time and as explained, they have always worked.

Enjoy and I would love to hear if any of you decide to use them! If you have a Hallowe’en ritual of your own, please feel welcome to share it in this group.

Copyright ~ Silverla StMichael 2015

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