Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Ante Diem VI Kalendas November

Modern Date : October 27th

Ante Diem VI Kalendas November
Sixth Day to the Kalends of November

This is one of the dies comitiales when committees of citizens could vote on political or criminal matters.

43 B.C. -- Marcus Junius Brutus commits suicide in the wake of the defeat at Philippi.

97 A.D. -- The Nerva adopts the future emperor Trajan (possible date)

113 A.D. -- The emperor Trajan departs from Rome for his war against the Parthians.

October was the eighth month of the old Roman calendar and was sacred to the goddess Astraea, daughter of Zeus and Themis. The name October comes from Octo, meaning eight (March used to be the first month).

Reed Month
In the Celtic tree calendar, this day begins the Reed Month, said to be most favorable for communication with ancestral spirits and the strengthening of all family ties.

Allan Apple Day
In Cornwall, unmarried men and women would traditionally buy highly polished apples called Allan Apples on this day and sleep with them under their pillows. Before dawn, they had to wake up and eat the fruit without sound, then go outside and sit under a tree. The first person that passed was to be their future spouse.

Significance of Apples
The Wiccan Star or Pentacle comes directly from the cut cross section of an apple. The star is the symbol of "Gnosis" or knowledge given by Eve to Adam and therefore getting the two of them ejected from "paradise". It's interresting to note that "women" held the knowledge of good and evil and gave it to the rest of mankind, and is symbolic of the break between "female" Matriarchal moon worship and "male" Patriarchal solar worship. The symbolism of apples in religion has taken on many forms throughout history.

Apples are commonly associated with Halloween for the tradition of bobbing for apples, the act that was once an old Druidic marriage tradition and a form of pagan sympathetic magic. This may represent the remnants of a Pagan baptism rite called a seining. The act of being blindfolded with hands behind the back could be a reminder of traditional Craft initiation ceremony and the tub can be seen as a latter day Cauldron of Regeneration, Apple ginger beer inside the ritual cup; in the ritual soap and as altar decorations is still being used for celebrating Samhain by witches and pagans.

Apples are considered sacred and are magickal because they were linked to many Goddesses in myth and legend. The Roman Goddess of apples and the fruit harvest was Ramona.

A Golden Apple used by Eris, the Goddess of Discord, led to the Trojan War in Greek Myth. Golden apples fed to the deities are affiliated with Iduna/Idunn, the Norse Goddess of Youth and guardian of "the apples of immortality." In Irish myth, the grave of the Goddess Aillin roots an apple tree that entwines with a yew tree of Baile, her lover.

Although it was never mentioned in the Bible, the apple was used to represent temptation and loss of innocence in the story of Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden. This change from a generic fruit to an "apple" was used to demonize its appeal by the early church since apples were sacred to early Europeans. Plucking this "apple of paradise" in a dream may indicate a sexual fantasy or experience, and psychologically; this apple of Eden symbolizes worldly wisdom, being aware of unconscious impulses and rational thinking.

The apple is also related to the number five and a star because an apple horizontally cut in half reveals five seeds in a shape of a star. This is the symbol of the Goddess Kore, an early female spirit who represented female creation and the primal universe.

Apples were a sign of life and rebirth in old Scandinavia and Celtic countries. Apples were frequently buried to ensure the continuance of earthly life and were used to symbolize living sacrifices to the deities.

The human soul was represented by apples in old Wales. In the Welsh language, the land of the dead was called Avalon which meant "land of apples".

Apples can be also be used to perform magick rituals or to symbolize a certain need. They are also used in love magic and for promoting health and peace. A bowl of apples on a table is a potent symbol of family health. A recommended way for releasing apple magic is hanging dried apple slices on fishing line or attaching them to wreaths.

Apples can also be used as a fertility token or to bring plans into fruition. Bring financial abundance by tying a string to a coin and pressing it into the center of a fresh apple. Hang this apple up and try to bite out the coin without using your hands. According to Irish legend, if you can accomplish this you will have money overflowing your pockets within the coming year.

Feast of Osiris
Feast of Osiris at Abydos, principal temple of the Osiris rite. The Neter of vegetation, who drives the plants upward through soil, stump, stone and anything else that is in the way of the Sun, is honored for his gifts of grain and herbs, all leafy life and fruits of the earth and the arts of wise rulership. Osiris waxes in his glory and power now, a few days before he will be eclipsed by his brother Set on 10/31.

St Frumentius
Frumentius was a Tyrian sailor who was captured at a Red Sea port and sold as a slave to the king of Asum in Ethiopia. He worked his way up from secretary to seneschal and finally freedom. His feast was celebrated in Louisiana, "as a gesture towards the African slaves."

Punky Night
The start of the Halloween season begins on the last Thursday of the month at Hinton St George in Somerset. Children parade with lanterns made of hollowed out mangel-wurzels, with the shells carved into faces and other designs. Supposedly these lanterns were once used to guide people home from a fair in a neighboring village but it seems more likely that, like pumpkins, these lights were lit to welcome the souls of the dead, returning at this time of the year.