By Kristin Limoges

Published on October 26, 2018

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Photography by Species by the Thousands

Before you shimmy into your Halloween costume this year, have you ever thought about the history of Halloween and the magic associated with All Hallows’ Eve? Let’s grab some context, yeah? Halloween is also known as Samhain (pronounced Sah-wen), and it’s actually the perfect evening to connect with yourself and set your intentions for the months ahead, says Erica Feldmann, founder of the Salem, MA and online shop and community space HausWitch.

No matter how you feel about the word “witch”, isn’t the idea of focusing on yourself, your energy, and your space a beautiful way to spend an evening? I’m ditching the costume this year and trying myself on for the evening instead. It’s actually the perfect evening to do so, too, because Samhain is actually the Witch’s New Year, and it’s a night meant to focus on self-care and intentions—even if you’ve never dipped a toe into spirituality or any form of a witch practice. Lean into the special day by indulging in a few wellness practices right from the comfort of your own home.

 

 

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Clear Your Space

“Before any kind of self-care practice I like to clear the space of any negative or stale energy in the air,” says Feldmann. Of course, you can burn sage, which is great, but she says you can even use music, clapping, dancing (woo, dancing!), or a clearing spray, like HausWitch Holy Smoke Room Spray ($20). Or try out Catherine Rising Large Smudge Stick ($28) for space-clearing, which is updated with dried flowers and herbs.

 

 

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Set the Mood

Okay, you’ve cleared your space, now it’s time to set the mood for all that magic. Feldmann suggests lighting your favorite candle—whether that’s an autumnal cozy scent you love or elegant tapers with that show-shopping candelabra you hardly ever use. The idea is to both set the mood with candlelight, and impart good smells and vibes.

But that candle isn’t just for show, she suggests a fun practice called candle-gazing. It’s similar to meditation, but with witch-approved benefits, including improved concentration and patience, and illuminating areas in your life where you lack clarity and vision. It’s pretty easy to do, too. Simply turn out the lights, and put the candle two to three feet from you at eye level. “Take some deep breaths, relax your eyes, and clear your mind,” says Feldmann. “Now stare into the candle flame and see if any messages come through. You might see pictures in your mind’s eye or in the candle flame.” Do not strain your eyes doing this practice though, do it only as it feels natural.

Brooklyn-based spiritual site Species by the Thousands makes a coy, Samhain-approved Ghost Story Candle ($30) that would certainly get you in the mood.

 

 

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Connect

Okay, you’ve been building up to this. It’s your special night to reconnect with yourself, the universe, and both the spirit world and your ancestors. “Witches believe that on Samhain the veil between the material world and the astral plane is at its thinnest,” says Feldmann. “Meaning that it’s a perfect time for connecting with those who have transitioned to the spirit world.”

This can be as simple as closing your eyes and expressing gratitude for all those that came before you, says Feldmann. Or, to take it a step further, drink some tea—no, really. Try an herbal tea (aka a potion!) with mugwort or rosemary to give into your psychic abilities (Feldmann assures that everyone has them) a boost. Then write in a journal, thanking your ancestors, while also releasing any patterns or attachments that no longer serve you.

Maybe try out the Moon Child Tea ($13), which is made with this very idea in mind.

 

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Cast A Spell

“Halloween is also a gateway to winter for those of us in the Northern Hemisphere, so setting an intention to stay warm, happy, and healthy at home is another way to honor the spirit of the night from the comfort of your own home,” says Feldmann.

There are a few kits that make setting an intention (aka spell!) less intimidating and easier. Species by the Thousands has a series of collections, based on what your hope for the year is. HausWitch makes a HausWarming Spell Kit ($35) that’s meant to warm up your space energetically, and leave it feeling high vibe all winter long. Or give Spitfire Girl Ritual Kit ($24) a go, with either their abundance, energy, or protection kits.