In some types of Neopaganism, particularly
those influenced by Wicca, the Wheel of the Year is celebrated
as the natural cycle of the seasons, commemorated by the eight
Because one belief of Neopaganism is that all
of nature is cyclical, the passing of time is also seen as a cycle,
a wheel which turns and turns. The course of birth, life, decline,
and death that we see in our human lives is echoed in the seasons.
The eight Sabbats are religious holidays that celebrate the passing
of the year.
This calendar follows the seasons
of the northern hemisphere, where the celebrations that form the
basis of the modern Sabbats originated. Neopagans in the southern
hemisphere usually celebrate the Sabbats on the opposite dates
of the year (6 months apart from the northern dates), in order
to follow the cycle of seasons where they live; i.e. an Australian
Neopagan would celebrate Samhain on May 1, when a Canadian Neopagan
would be celebrating Beltane.