Late post is late because this week has been frikkin’ ridiculous. But at least I have the time to write now. This week’s post is about Mabon, and is the last of the Sabbat posts for now. Don’t ask me about next week though; I have three thousand ideas and no inspiration for any of them. XD
I must admit that Mabon is one of those festivals I tend to have a bit of a mental blank with regards to what it’s actually about. The name sounds too similar (the way I pronounce it does, anyway) to May (Day) that I have a feeling I end up equating it with Beltaine or something, when it’s nothing of the sort. I’m not sure if anyone else does that, but that’s me, I suppose. Mabon isn’t even in May. WTF, brain.
For the confused, Mabon is generally celebrated around September 20(ish) in the Northern Hemisphere, and around March 20(ish) in the Southern Hemisphere. I have no idea where I get May from, apart from the name itself, Mabon. I am terrible at remembering the date of this Sabbat. 🙁
Mabon is the Autumn Equinox, and it’s one of those weird Sabbats where I … mark it, but don’t really have the same sort of feelings about it that I do for Litha or Lammas, for example. It’s a harvest festival, and I suppose I can sort of get into that whole ‘second harvest’ sort of thing, but it’s not everything to me.
In figuring out my own Wheel and my own Sabbat corresponcences, I’ve penciled in festivals for Wesir-Ra for both Equinoxes. It was when I heard Wesir called ‘the dark side of Ra’ that I began to get fascinated with the idea of Wesir-Ra. The Lord of the Bright Sun, and the Lord of the Dark Underworld. I don’t know if it’s just me, but I find Ra easier to understand in this context than just Ra Himself. Perhaps that’s because Ra is so bright it’s easier to see Him through a prism and see Him indirectly, or in this case, through Wesir.
Amun is also described this way, too, as the hidden Sun. But I see Amun-Ra differently to Wesir-Ra. Amun-Ra is the solar eclipse, with the dark centre, and only the corona showing. Wesir-Ra is more of a light/dark duality sort of thing. Perhaps more appropriately depicted as a yin/yang symbol. Light and Dark are equal partners here, whereas Amun is hidden behind Ra, unseen. That’s the difference. Heat/cold, light/dark, living/dead, bright/dim, seen/unseen, that is Wesir-Ra. Amun-Ra doesn’t have those same qualities, at least not to me.
I like the idea of having a God like Wesir-Ra as part of my Equinox rites if only because I like the duality, and I like the idea of having that kind of dual God at the time of year when night and day are equal. Of course, at the Autum Equinox, Ra’s light is dimming, and giving way to Wesir in preparation for His death and descent at Samhain when the Mysteries of Wesir fall.
I have thought about just using Wesir and Ra for the whole Wheel, but I need to honour Sobek and Heru-sa-Aset too, and I honour Them at the Solstices as Sobek-as-Amun and Heru-as-Ra. I feel it’s so appropriate to honour Harpocrates/Heru-pa-khered as the new-born Sun at Yule, and Heru-sa-Aset the Avenger at Litha, which is why I have that dichotomy there. Heru-sa fits the Solstices better than Wesir-Ra does.
But I’ve sort of split the year into two anyway, with the Solstices and Equinoxes as the major narrative, and the other cross-quarter days being more self-focused and minor(ish) in comparison to the major Sabbats. I can’t remember if this is a traditional way to split the year (I think so? But I can’t remember where I read that, so I can’t be sure), but it makes sense to me. It has a nice balance of self and Universe/Cosmos, so that the Wheel doesn’t feel imbalanced towards either end of the spectrum. That’s important to me, anyway, which is why I’ve been a little more flexible with the cross-quarter days and their meanings so I can tailor them to my own needs.