All Souls’ Day. Día de los Muertos. Halloween. Samhain. Something’s in the air and it may be ghostly. Ghostly can also be described as spiritual. At this time of the year, I love to remind everyone that we are ever closer to our loved ones who have crossed over. We feel something or know in our hearts that there is an energetic charge that may not be so apparent at other times during the year.
Social media posts across the board name announce these autumn times almost as gleefully as a pumpkin latte. But do we drink pumpkin latte all year long? Probably not, otherwise there wouldn’t be so much excitement. Are the face-painted-picture-taking-worshippers attending to their ancestors all year long? Maybe. Are the altar-picture-takers doing so for effect? What is the reason for sharing such personal information about oneself? To prove we are spiritual? Possibly. Maybe it’s to share without words the incredible beauty of one’s life with others as encouragement.
Honoring one’s ancestors sounds wonderful. The ones we recognize may or may not have been blood relations but somehow we’ve forged a relationship with them. We may create a small altar for them with items chosen to provide light and clarity for them as they progress in spirit form. A candle. A glass or bowl of water. A cigar. A cup of espresso. A small bouquet of flowers. Your altar. Your choice.
Some of us may not want to honor our dead, despite what our spiritually focused friends suggest. Theoretically it sounds good. Emotionally it may sting. Our ancestors may have abused or neglected us, our siblings, or our parents. We may be in the process of attempting to sever that link of dysfunctional behavior in our blood line and that’s laudable. Again, your choice.
If that’s how we feel that’s okay. Just as we tend to the mental, physical, and emotional aspects of ourselves, so it is the same with our spiritual selves. We’re advised to see a doctor when starting a new exercise program or a financial advisor when we are no longer able to ignore the letters I-R-A. We’d never be pushed to run a full Marathon on the first day we put on our kicks. We wouldn’t be advised to empty our entire prudent reserve and drain it into a new IRA. One day at a time. Making ourselves healthy can be a long slow process. We could consult a spiritual advisor of our choice or someone highly recommended by someone who’s actions we respect.
When honoring our blood line ancestors we needn’t white wash the past. What’s done is done but we have the ability not to respond as we did in the past. We’re not in the business of expectations but sometimes even with our dead we’re able to heal our relationships with outside help. My own relationships with my relatives who have crossed over continue to develop in a nourishing sort of way. I’m not blinded to truths but I’m open to human failings and strengths- theirs and my own.
For some it may mean lighting that candle and saying a quick ‘thank you’ or ‘you’re forgiven and I’m forgiven’ as actions in order to start the healing process. Maybe next year, we may eagerly await the thin veils between us and the other world as we do our pumpkin spice latte.
How do you manage this time of year?