6 Modern Autumnal Equinox Traditions

| 9/19/2016 4:40:00 PM

Celestial cycles are inevitable constants that humankind can always count on to track the progress of the year. Although the Vernal (spring) Equinox tends to get more attention than the Autumnal (fall) Equinox, both are equally important in tracking the cycles of the Earth.

Historically, the Autumnal Equinox was used as a way to give thanks for the summer months and all that came with them. It was also a time during which ancient peoples welcomed the coming darker months and prepared for, the larger fall festival, Samhain. During the equinox—September 22 this year—day and night are of equal length.

Most modern cultures say goodbye to summer with the beginning of school, or by celebrating Labor Day, but you can honor the equinox by adapting ancient traditions to suit your modern life. In fact, many of our fall festivities already draw inspiration from pagan traditions.

fall food in wooden basket
Photo by Fotolia/maglara.

Modern Traditions to Honor the Autumnal Equinox

Begin a gratitude practice. Gratitude has been shown to boost mood, improve sleep and even support immune health. Since the Autumnal Equinox is a time of thanks, consider beginning your own gratitude practice to honor the season and improve your overall health. Begin by making a short list of the things you’re thankful for on this day, and set an intention to make it a daily ritual.

Visit an apple orchard. Apples are one of many foods associated with the autumnal equinox and a symbol of wisdom. Whether you take your family apple picking or to the cider mill, this tradition is fun for all ages.