We celebrate Death in October and Crone in November – two distinct life passages – honoring each in their own time.
At Samhain, we recognize death as an inherent part of life. We create cathartic rituals for our losses – including physical deaths and the loss of parts of ourselves: relationships, plans, resources, health. We invite the wisdom of Death Priestesses, and speak into sacredness plans for our own death – what we want for our own dying processes, our burial and death ritual choices.
Honoring non-human loss is an important part of these rituals. I have seen women cry more over the loss of a pet than for family members, perhaps because those losses are no often valued, and we don’t make space to grieve them. We grieve the deaths we pass along the road – innumerable cats, squirrels and armadillos. We grieve the losses of the Earth – tree beings, landscapes and waterways, entire species – expanding the notion of Death Priestessing to encompass our care of the Earth and all Her creatures.
Facing death is hard work, but holding sacred conversation about mortality is an extraordinarily empowering and healing process for ourselves and for the larger universe of souls.
Crone. Old Woman….In November, we take time to gather in recognition of She Who Gains Wisdom Through Experience. It is a good time of year to perform Croning Rituals for our community members who are stepping into this sacred role. It is also a time to get real about what aging means for each of us, personally, no matter our physical age. What am I learning from my life experiences? What are my fears about aging? Am I taking care of my mental and physical self so as to live well into my future? How do I maintain balance with my limitations while continuing to live life fully? Who are my Crone role models and how do I honor them? We call on our Goddess-honoring lineage as we celebrate the Crone life phase in November.