Posts Tagged ‘Samhain’

Three Items about the Dead

Whose Bones Are Those? The Halloween news rush brought item about a new unit established at an Oxford college to perform cross-disciplinary investigations of religious relics In what is thought to be the first research body of its type in the world, the unit, based in Keble College, will bring together experts in radiocarbon dating, […]

How Halloween Came Back to Derry

A short video (Irish with subtitles; English) describing how a large public Halloween festival in the Northern Irish city of Derry began in a pub in the early 1980s and grew from there. And while some speakers, including folklorist Jenny Butler, do discuss the ancient festival of Samhain, you will see that the Derry festival […]

Pentagram Pizza: Where You Find an Eagle Eating a Snake . . .

¶ After reading this article, I think I will write something for Fate magazine about how Tenochtitlan was really a Mexica overlay on a forgotten Roman colony. Should be good for a few chuckles. ¶ After a long hiatus (in comic book years), Asterix the Gaul returns. ¶ An old acquaintance, Loretta Orion, pops-up in […]

Not *My* Ancient Pagan Survival

All right, you have put away the skulls, bats, and dishes for your ancestors, all the while humming, “It’s the Most Magickal Time of the Year.” It’s time to think about Yule! And to ponder, is this custom an ancient Pagan survival? (Slightly NSFW.) As for your pre-Christian traditional Yule tree, Obama wants to tax […]

We Did Not Burn the Landowner After All

There is an Anglo-American couple (her from the UK, him from right here) down the road who always have a Bonfire Night party. M. and I bumped into the American half recently, and he said that this year’s “Guy” would be a certain wealthy local hobby-rancher. Having earned his money elsewhere, this guy is busy […]

Samhain Is Still Three Days Away

If you are in the Northern Hemisphere and following a solar calendar with quarter days and cross-quarter days, it falls at 1827 hours Universal Time on Monday the 7th. You don’t need a henge, just a website for all your solar-calendrical needs.

The Campus Day of the Dead, 2011

As planned,  I stopped by the Student Center on Wednesday to check out the Day of the Dead altars. No Vlad the Impaler altar this year! No altars to firefighters or Victorian writers either. Apparently Chicano Studies conformity was enforced, with Catholic Campus Ministries stepping in as a co-sponsor as well. Lots of crosses, “correct” […]

Did You Contribute to the Halloween Economy?

It is worth more than $2 billion annually. Not really that big in the overall holiday picture, though. Halloween’s haul was the smallest, accounting for a mere 2.6% of holiday spending. But for a few industries, October 31 is the night to shine. According to the National Confectioners Association, sweets-makers reap 8% of their annual […]

Quick Day of the Dead Instructions—And How Things Change

Last Monday a notice popped up in my university email: It’s time to build an altar for the Day of the Dead. (And do it in the correct, traditional manner!) Several professors of Spanish have organized an altar-building event in the student center for a number of years now. But the event takes its own […]

The Pagan Studies Samhain

Our little celebration here at the American Academy of Religion annual meeting, during which we Pagan scholars and friends discard our tweed jackets and switch to Samhain black, made it to The Huffington Post.  (Scroll to the bottom.) Thanks, Grove, I think. It’s another example of how Wicca, in particular, is becoming the new Other […]