How To Celebrate The Autumn Equinox, With Expert Holistic Advice

This year, the autumn equinox occurs on Saturday 23rd September, when the Earth’s tilt will result in equal durations of day and night across the globe. In the Northern Hemisphere, this celestial event marks the transition from the warmth of summer to the cosiness of autumn, and we’re all here for it.

Indeed, it seems that Brits are increasingly interested in the significance of this seasonal shift. Our friends at The Mixer, who adore a seasonal cocktail or two (hey, who doesn’t?), tell us that “Google searches for the ‘autumn equinox’ nearly tripling in the past 5 years. Specifically, people are searching for ideas on how to celebrate the equinox, asking for more information on traditional fragrance oils and flowers, food and drink, and meaningful activities and rituals”.

“Traditionally, the autumn equinox is all about balance and reflection. It’s an opportunity to consider the intentions we may have set at the beginning of the year, what has come to fruition and how we can now reap what we have sown. With the harmony between light and dark, It can be a good time to do reflective shadow work”, says aromatherapist and holistic healer, Simone Stevens.

So, with the help The Mixer and Simone, here’s some ideas on how to bring in the Autumn Equinox this season.

Autumn Equinox Fragrances & Herbs

Simone recommends fitting herbs and fragrances: “At this time of year, as we instinctively move toward hibernation, it is good to connect to earthier, grounding scents such as sandalwood, patchouli, myrrh and rosemary. Nut oils and fragrances also work well, almond and walnut, in particular. Cloves and cinnamon can also be introduced, and continued in the run up to Christmas. Throw these herbs onto a campfire as incense, or burn the fragrance oils at home, to harness their delicious scent and energies.”

Autumn Equinox Decorations

If you’re hosting a gathering at home, you can use autumnal decorations to create a hygge vibe. Simone suggests: “Reflect nature’s beautiful hues of dark greens, golds, browns and oranges. Certain animals are also associated with the equinox, such as deer, stags, squirrels and blackbirds. Adorn your home with anything that has fallen from the trees, such as acorns, apples, pine cones and leaves. Corn also makes a great decoration. And sunflowers are very much a symbol of harvest and hope.” 

Autumn Equinox Crystals

Crystal healing is a holistic practice that uses gemstones to promote physical and emotional wellbeing. Selected crystals can be worn as jewellery, placed on the body or held during meditation. Different crystals have unique properties so experiment with what best resonates with you.

Simone says: “During the autumn equinox, we work with crystals that have earthy, golden tones, such as yellow topaz, Tiger’s eye, amber, which helps to preserve energy, and citrine which is a beautiful pale yellow associated with abundance and confidence. Amethyst is also powerful as we head to darker seasons as it connects us to our third eye, helping with inward reflection.”

Autumn Equinox Food & Drink

The autumn equinox is often associated with harvest season and in many cultures, it’s a key agricultural time for the gathering of crops.

Simone says: “People can express gratitude for nature’s bounty by making offerings to gods or goddesses they connect to with golden foods, often honeycomb is used. Communal feasts can be prepared, using seasonal food such as apples, corn, and root vegetables including beetroot, squash, parsnips and pumpkins. It’s traditional to have mulled apple cider at this time of year and raise a glass to prosperity, thinking about how you might harness what you’ve harvested this year and how it could feed into the riches of the coming year, after winter.”

Read: 5 ways to make the most out of autumn’s fruits

Autumn Equinox Rituals

The autumn equinox is the perfect time to engage in a simple ritual to connect with the seasonal change. Whether it be a walk in nature, immersing yourself in the sights, sounds and scents of autumn, or creating a small altar at home and using it as a space for meditation, you can take time to reflect on areas of your life where you seek balance and harmony.

Simone discusses her preferred ritual: “Write down any worries or negative emotions on a piece of paper. Then safely burn it in the fire, this symbolises the release of what no longer serves you.”

The most important aspect of these personal rituals is your intention and connection with the natural world. They can, of course, be adapted to align with your own personal beliefs and spiritual practice. 

The Bottom Line

Whether it’s taking some candlelit me-time or having a campfire gathering with friends, marking the seasonal change with a ceremony can provide us with a greater sense of connection to the natural world. And isn’t that something we could all use a little of right now?

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