Enjoying a feast with memories of your beloved dead can be a comforting, joyous tradition.
Celebrating Past Lives Lived
Celebrate the upcoming holiday with the following Samhain remembrance feast, designed with children in mind. What I love about this ritual is how it celebrates the lives and memories of those who have already passed over, allowing their memory to live on in the next generation. This remembrance feast can easily become a beloved family tradition looked forward to each year, along with the stories it brings. I mean, who wouldn’t want to hear about their great grandma accidentally burning up her false teeth in the wood burning stove? (True story – she’d been eating an orange and opened the stove to toss in the peel. We later found the browned bits of enamel mixed in with the ashes.)
I created the feast, published as part of a collection of seasonal rituals in Llewellyn’s 2007 Magical Almanac, to happen in a ritual setting. However, that ritual part can easily be omitted if that fits your needs better. Perhaps you already have something more ritualistic planned for later, or early. Either way, enjoy your feast, which I think serves our ancestors, including friends and animal companions, so much better.
And finally, a question simply because I’m curious. What would be included in your own family’s Samhain remembrance feast?
Supplies Needed: North – apples; South – candles, East – mulled cider, West – incense, deity representations, food for the supper
This ritual is a bit different than the others as it celebrates a meal in honor of the dead. It can be part of a regular meal, or something special in the afternoon or evening. Gather everyone around the table for a meal celebrating the lives of those who have passed on. If possible include some of the foods they would have enjoyed. Where you can, let your children help you with the meal’s preparation. Set the table with a bowl of apples, Celtic food of the dead. If possible, eat in the family or living room around a low table, so all can sit on pillows on the floor or relax in chairs.
Once the food it ready, create sacred space by lighting incense and raising energy around the chosen dining room’s perimeter. Light candles on the table. Sit down and enjoy your meal. Remember and share stories of family members and friends who have passed on to the Summerland. Remember family pets that are no longer with you. At the end, close the meal with a moment of reflective silence. Then lower the sacred-space defining energy and it is done. This ritual serves to not only remember the dead, but to also reinforce family ties and stories.
As always, the brightest of blessings,