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The Sabbats

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The Sabbats celebrate the eternal circle of life – birth, death, and rebirth. These seasonal holidays have been followed for many thousands of years by ancient cultures such as Nordic, Celtic, and Greek. The Sabbats are attuned to the natural rhythms and cycles of nature and the passing seasons. Sabbat is a French word taken from the Hebrew Sabbath, meaning “to rest.” The Sabbats take place eight times in the year, they have spiritual significance. Most witches celebrate the Sabbats.­

Current/Upcoming Sabbat



Samhain is one of the Greater Sabbats, it is the witch’s biggest holiday and usually referred to as Halloween. It is New Year’s Day as it marks the death of the Lord. Samhain, is the death festival, and is the time when the veil between the worlds of the living and the dead at its finest.

Sabbats in Brief

The Major Sabbats include the four major agricultural festivals, Samhain, Imbolc, Beltane, and Lughnasadh. The minor Sabbats include the solar festivals of the equinoxes and solstices, Yule, Ostara, Litha, and Mabon.

The midpoint of the four seasons is when the major Sabbats occur. The beginning of each season is when the minor Sabbats occur.

Each spring the day, when the hours between sunrise and sunset are exactly equal to the hours between sunset and sunrise, is called “vernal equinox. “There is also a day each fall when the hours of darkness and the hours of daylight are exactly in harmony, this is the “autumnal equinox.”

Halfway between each equinox, there are two points on the earth’s path which mark the Solstices. Daylight hours are at their longest during the Summer Solstice, the hours of darkness are at their shortest. During the Winter Solstice, we have the shortest day and longest night.

All Sabbat ceremonies begin at sundown on the eve of the dates given and continue to sundown. Each Sabbat is spaced at approximately even intervals throughout the year.

By celebrating the festivals, you attune yourself to the cycles of nature creating an inner calm and oneness with all things.

The Wheel of the Year

The Wheel of the Year is of Pagan heritage and is the calendar for the cycle of the seasons. The year is viewed as a wheel that keeps turning, and once it has completed a rotation, the wheel keeps going and turns again and again. Each of the spokes on this wheel represents one of the eight Sabbats.

The Wheel of the Year begins at Samhain, which is better known as Hallowe’en or All Hallows Eve, which is the Celtic New Year, this is when the veil between the worlds of life and death are the finest.

The Four Seasons are known as Solar Festivals because they mark a seasonal change caused by the Sun. The cross-quarter days are marked by Fire Festivals and are usually celebrated as significant agricultural festivals. The Solar Festivals and the Fire Festivals make up the Wheel Of The Year.

Wiccans look at the year as the continuing and repeating story of the life, death, and rebirth of the God and the fertility of the Goddess.

Wheel of the Year Cycle

  • At Yule, which occurs at the time of the winter solstice in December, the Lady gives birth to the Lord and then rests.
  • At Imbolc, in February, the Lord is seen as a young boy, and the Lady recovers from giving birth.
  • Ostara marks the first day of spring and the awakening of the Earth. The Lord is seen as a growing youth at this time.
  • At Beltane, the Lord has grown to manhood and he falls in love with the Lady, the two unite, producing the bounty of Nature. The Lady becomes pregnant by the Lord.
  • The Summer Solstice is the point in midsummer when everything in Nature is at its peak, there is abundance. During this time the Lord and the Lady are at the height of their powers.
  • Lughnasadh is the day in August of the first harvest. The first grains are cut, and the Lord begins to weaken.
  • At Mabon, the second harvest, the Lord is dying. The days grow shorter, and Earth readies for the slumber of winter.
  • At Samhain, in October, the Lord dies only to be reborn of the Lady again at Yule.

All The Sabbats



Imbolc is the time to sort out any pressing matters, such as making peace with those you’re in conflict with, returning borrowed items, and reconnecting with family and friends.


Ostara is a Lesser Sabbat and marks the Spring Equinox when day and night balance. Called Ostara after the Saxon Goddess Eostre, this is a time of renewal, regeneration, and resurrection.


Beltain (fire in the sky), celebrates the spring holiday and is a significant fire and fertility festival that begins at sunset on 30th April. Halfway around the year from Samhain, when we honour the dead, Beltain is the festival that honours all of the living.


Litha (the Summer Solstice) marks the longest day of the year. During the summer solstice, it is the time of the first harvest and the celebration of this bounty. In times gone by this Sabbat was celebrated with large bonfires, they were burned to promote purification, fertility, and love.
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Ostara is a Lesser Sabbat and marks the Spring Equinox when day and night balance. Called Ostara after the Saxon Goddess Eostre, this is a time of renewal, regeneration, and resurrection. Not much is known about this Eostre, except that she was the Goddess of fertility and was celebrated at the Spring Equinox, she was also connected with hares and eggs.

Legend has it that the Goddess Eostre turned a colourful bird into a rabbit and the rabbit then laid coloured eggs, this is where the Easter bunny and egg hunts came from and the basis of the Christian festival Easter.

The Anglo-Saxon lunar month of April was called Eastermonath. The equinox is a time both of fertility and new life, and of balance and harmony. Light and dark are here in balance, but the light is growing stronger. Now is the time to balance ourselves and the subtle energies within us, such as our chakras, the inner masculine and feminine qualities, the light and dark aspects, and so on.

This is a time that witches cast spells for careers, relationships, and love. It is a time for planting new ideas and a time to free yourself from anything in the past that is holding you back.

You can acknowledge and celebrate this Sabbat by going into nature, taking a walk, or spending time in your garden, also to recognise the changes in the Earth as she awakens each day.

Ostara Activities

  • Have a traditional breakfast of buns, ham, and eggs.
  • Wear green clothing.
  • Bless seeds planted in the garden.
  • Place a lit green candle in a dish full of moist earth, let it burn down, and then bury the remainders (except the dish)
  • Plant some seeds in pots or in your garden.
  • Dye or paint eggs with pagan symbols and God/Goddess signs.
  • Make hot cross buns to honour the union of the earth and the sun for Spring. Slash the “X” and bless the cakes.
  • Participate in an Easter egg hunt put on by your community.
  • Take a long walk and take in the beauty of nature reawakening all around you.
  • Meditate and/or Private Ritual.
  • Create bird feeders.
  • Make hot cross buns to honor the union of the earth and the sun for Spring. Slash the “X” and bless the cakes.
  • Make pysanky and krashanky, magical amulets of fertility, protection, and prosperity.
  • Eat an egg you have empowered with a quality you desire.
  • This is a good time to cast spells for, careers, relationships, and love.

Deity’s Portfolio

  • Division: Minor Sabbat
  • Other Names: Spring Equinox, Eostre, Vernal Equinox, Alban Eiber, Bacchanalia, Lady Day
  • Southern Hemisphere Date: Sept 20-23
  • Northern Hemisphere Date: March 21
  • Associated Holiday: Easter
  • Associated Deities: Eostre, Spring Maiden, Spring Lord, Ishtar, Astarte
  • Associated Herbs: Jasmine, rose, violet.
  • Associated Stones: Jasper, Moss agate, green moonstone, orange calcite, rose quartz.
  • Symbols of Ostara: Eggs, Hare, the New Moon, butterflies, and cocoons.
  • Foods of Ostara: Leafy green vegetables, Dairy foods, Nuts such as Pumpkin, Sunflower, and Pine. Flower Dishes and Sprouts.
  • Drinks of Ostara: Lemonade, Egg-Nog, and drinks made from seasonal fruits and berries.
  • Incense of Ostara: Jasmine, Rose, Strawberry, Floral of any type.
  • Ritual Oils: Lotus, Magnolia, Ginger
  • Colors: of Ostara: lemon yellow, pale green, and pale pink.
  • Taboos: None
  • Plants: Crocus, Daffodil, Jasmine, Irish Moss, Snowdrop, Ginger
  • Element: Air
  • Activities: Dyeing Eggs, Looking for Spring Growth
  • Animals: Rabbits, Cougar, Sea Crow, Sea Eagle, Hedgehog, and Boar.
  • Mythical Creatures: Merfolk and any other Air or Water beings.
  • Celebration of: The God and Goddess begin their courtship.