Monthly Spirit
October 31

Samhain © Aris Dervis 2010

Samhain © Aris Dervis 2010


Samhain (pronounced Sow-En) is the Celtic name for Halloween.  These days Halloween is all big biz and merchandising.  But back in the day it was a profoundly religious occasion.  Samhain represented the point in the annual cycle when the veil between both worlds was the thinnest and you could more easily communicate with your dearly departed.  This holiday culturally echoes the Mexican Day of the Dead on November 2nd when families spend an overnighter at the cemetery entertaining their deceased loved ones.

I met Aris 29 years ago at a Halloween party in Chelsea and I was born on the Day of the Dead (Catholic translation: All  Souls day) so I feel pretty connected to these celebrations.  All Souls day is a rarity in the church.  You can actually liberate souls from Purgatory by participating in 3 Masses.  I’ll leave it to your imagination to consider how joyously raucous my childhood birthdays were.   After 3 Masses I was spent.

Samhain is available as a print and as a greeting card.

Happy holiday!

Serving Spirits Monthly Spirit © Aris Dervis