This month: October

October was originally the eighth month of the Roman calendar (from Latin octo, meaning eight). The Calends, sacred to Juno, are on the first day, the Nones on the 7th and the Ides, sacred to Jupiter, are on the 15th. The 2nd, 8th and 16th days are considered unlucky. In my personal practice, the first Wednesday of the month is dedicated to Mercury, the 19th day to Minerva and the 21st to Ingui.

October 7: Silvanalia
Despite the fact that Silvanus appears to have been very popular at one time, no festive dates are known. This is not, therefore, an historical celebration. It’s just me trying to get closer to the Roman Lord of Woods and, as such, setting aside a day in His honour. The choice of date was practical and symbolic at the same time: in the northern hemisphere, the tree-planting season goes from late September to early March, so a day anywhere in that period would be a good idea to pay tribute to a tree-god; and since I have almost no festivals in October, I picked the Nones of that month.

Besides a formal ceremony, activities in this day may include offerings to wood spirits – from music to beverage and wreaths – as well as planting trees and volunteer work at a local forest.

October 29: Figularia
The Potter’s Festival (from Latin figulus) is not an historical celebration, but my way of integrating the Egyptian god Khnum in my religious calendar. An explanation of the choice of date can be found here and, just as in these last two years, I’ll be making food offerings to the Divine Potter of the Nile, as well as a clay statue of a ram that I’ll then leave on the banks of a river (e.g. here).


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One thought on “This month: October

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