The boundaries between worlds have thinned at this halfway point between the autumn equinox and the winter solstice. It is as if a small door has opened and allowed spirits and old ghosts and mischief makers full access to our neighborhood.
You leave out offerings, a welcome treat to your ancestors, whose guidance you are grateful for; and gifts to pacify the demons and fairies so that you won't bear the brunt of their trouble making. You leave out candles to welcome old souls searching for their home--family maybe, or lost pieces of yourself you seek to reclaim and call to you once again.
You celebrate this connection to the spirit world with sugar skulls and marigolds, unafraid of the night and the creatures it hides; they are a part of us, a part of you. You honor the Aztec goddess of the underworld, paying homage to her strength that allows her to watch over the bones and souls of the dead.
You offer up your flowers, your food, your drink, to thank her for gathering up the pieces of yourself that you no longer need, taking them with her back to the underworld; you thank her too for restoring the parts of you that still live on, though you hadn't known it until this day. You celebrate the dead to honor the power of life.
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