Honouring the Ancestors

What do you really know about Hallowe’en?

Ghosts, Ghouls and Goblins… Pumpkins, Tricks and Treats…that is what many people know of this time of year. And I’m glad you do. It is a time of celebration which some people observe and others fear.


In Gaelic, Hallowe’en is called Samhain; or Summer’s end. It is pronounced saah-win or saa-ween. The veil thins between our World and that of our Ancestors.

The Ancestors are every person who has lived before us. Our Family, friends, foes, teachers and those we have never met. We stand on the shoulders of millions of millions. The dust of their bones is in our fields, woodlands and shores. They have chemically and spiritually become one with the Land. This is a fact, rather than the start of a dark tale…

Hallowe’en is a Pagan festival of light rather than darkness. In 2 weeks, Hindus celebrate Diwali – another festival of Light. Our Ancestors saw this time as one of the last days of light. As you may have noticed, the days are becoming shorter and the nights longer. Before the harnessing of electricity and the development of technology; the next few months could be harsh.

If the harvest had been poor or failed, food would be scarce and frail members of the community may fail to see the awakening of the next year. Thankfully, many people have enough and never know the gnawing of hunger or the biting chill of no shelter.


Death was no more absent then than today. The perception of what comes next is different for everybody. Our society has a fascination with the macabre; yet has a real issue with dying. We don’t want to talk about it; just in case we might have to feel her gentle touch. Eventually, when it is your time; it will happen. Just accept it. Death is the dance partner of Life. We have lost contact with each other. Preferring to send a text, tweet or private message rather than talk face to face; the zombies already walk among us.

There are people that have rich lives and want for nothing materially. Yet ironically, live a half-life, decaying from the inside out. We have forgotten how to live fully; how to be present. We have forgotten how to honour our Elders and Ancestors.

Now I’m not suggesting you go and dig up the remains of any of your Dearly Departed; just remember them. Light a candle in their memory, take a little time to remember your Family and friends. They may have physically died, however, I can assure you; everyone in this life and the next appreciate a little time. Make a space on Hallowe’en, or All Hallows Eve, as it’s also known; to be present with them.


I’ve been sensing and seeing the dearly departed or arrived souls (as I like to call them) for the majority of my life. It comes naturally to me. It’s part of the reason I work as a Medium. We have forgotten how to remain in touch with our Family. Though occasionally they will try to get your attention. Have things around your home ever been borrowed or moved to odd places?

Have you had a particular song or phrase keep appearing in the background that triggers a memory of them? Or a familiar fragrance randomly occurs in your home? these are all quite normal ways of getting in touch.

Our lives can become so full, that we have no time to be quiet. Or we keep busy to numb out the loss and grief. To fill that space where our family were. Yet our Ancestors wait patiently, observing your life, occasionally reminding you they are present – in a different form and space. However, just because a person slips off their mortal coil doesn’t mean they become all knowing sweetness and light. If they were an awkward, cantankerous git… that remains the same.

Though, some of us have been made afraid of the dark, of the unknown; courtesy of various religions and modern entertainment. We have been discouraged from having a connection with our Ancestors. The closest we get is old photographs, dusty paperwork and family trees. Shadow is seen as something bad or wrong. Yet there is no shadow without light; it’s always present together.


So this Hallowe’en, dress up and have fun, go Trick or Treating, bob for apples, carve pumpkins and raise a glass to our Ancestors. Maybe set an extra place at the table and light a candle to remember your Family. Take a little time to feel the shift in the seasons. As we move from the brighter half of the year to the season of falling leaves, mists and candle light.

Enjoy the intimacy of time together with family and friends; as we all turn within. Contemplate what you need to release, and what seeds you want to grow over the Winter months. Reconnect with who you are.

Samhain Blessings

On the eve of All Hallows,
As we walk with the Lady and Lord of Shadows.

May family and friends draw near,
On Samhain night may you gather here.

Join with us while the veil is thin,
Share your wisdom or make us grin.

We ask you pause your journey on this night,
And we fare thee well at first light.

Rest a while in our hearth and home,
Enjoy our company, take your time.

Goodly spirits we are blessed by your gift,
As the seasons shift from sun to mist.

Thank you for being with me and mine,
May you be blessed at this time.


John is a modern day Cunning Man. He works as a Herbalist and Holistic therapist; as well as a Clairvoyant and Medium. For further details of his services and to book appointments just get in contact.

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