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The Wheel of the Year is the engine that drives NeoPagan practice. Explore thw magick of the season beyond the Eight Great Sabbats.

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Switch: September & the Transition to Autumn

This year September 1st was very hot, approaching 100 degrees, bright and sunny. I love how hot 9/1 is, because I know that 9/30 will be radically different. No matter how hot and sultry September begins, it will end looking and feeling different. The month may start in triple digits but could see a hard frost before it ends. The transition into Autumn doesn't happen in an instant, and certainly this September I had several hot days that felt like late Summer. But as we get closer to, and then pass, the Equinox, the days mellow and ripen as the Summer fades away.

The light becomes more golden, thicker somehow. We are startled to notice how early it gets dark. The trees begin to turn. There's a chill that wasn't present in the early morning, and in the late evening. There are several cultural cues to emphasize this feeling of transition, of change, of excitement as new adventures begin. The new school year, no matter how long it;s been since I was in a classroom, always brings with it a desire to make changes, to shift focus. I want to do more ritual, to deepen and formalize my practice. Everything starts to slow down but all our senses are sharper. The Wheel is turning, and moving us closer to the Descent into the Dark of the Year. We're not quite there yet, but we are moving steadily in that direction. And everything—the trees, the animals and birds and insects, the water, the sky—everything reflects back that turning.

 

Mabon arrives with plenty of work and leisure. On Mabon I harvested a bunch of new potatoes, but several of those plants were still growing quite well, and with no signs of a frost, so I let them be. Much like any of the projects I sowed during the Ascent from the Underworld, some were ready and some needed more time. Some had come to fruition beautifully, better than I could have imagined. Some did not bear fruit, and some spaces are lying fallow. But all of these have changed, through time and care, from the seeds they were, to what they are now. And all of them are changing again, as we move into Autumn, as we evaluate our harvests and see what our deeds and words have created. We've changed too, since we set those intentions. How have we grown and flowered, what have we created in ourselves, over the course of the Waxing Year. Now that we are on the Wane, so much is coming to light. Just like the potatoes I dug up. And just like those potatoes, I'm grateful for what I harvested, and for what was lost, and for how I have changed and grown. This is a time to be grateful for our harvest, for what we bring to light.

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Leni Hester is a Witch and writer from Denver, Colorado. Her work appears in the Immanion anthologies "Pop Culture Grimoire," "Women's Voices in Magick" and "Manifesting Prosperity". She is a frequent contributor to Witches and Pagans and Sagewoman Magazines.

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