Summer Solstice/Litha

This comes a little late, but I wanted to post some information about the solstice, suggestions for ritual, etc.  Feel free to share your ideas, suggestions, and traditions in the comments!

summer

Solstice means “Sun Standstill” and Summer Solstice, in the Northern Hemisphere, brings us the longest day of the year. Find time to bask in the bright abundant light summer brings and enjoy the harvest as things begin to ripen around you. This is a wonderful day to consciously witness the sunrise and appreciate the blessings the solar light and fuel bring into your life.

In your creations, Summer Solstice brings the opportunity to evaluate your progress and add needed ingredients for a successful harvest. If you’ve been working with the timings since last Winter Solstice and tracking your creations, look back to see how far you’ve come since then. Make honoring your progress and celebrating your successes part of your Summer Solstice celebration.

As you honor the Wheel of the Year and work with it year after year, you deepen your appreciation for each phase within its cycles. Since summer is a time of heat and light, this window gives us the opportunity to enjoy the luscious taste of ripe fruit, splash in cooling waters, relax in the shade, and spend a lot of time with family and friends—all perfect expressions of the family-loving, nurturing sign of Cancer.

With Summer Solstice comes the ever-so-subtle shift of the days growing shorter. While it will be barely noticeable for a few months, the light gently begins its slow decreasing from this point through to Winter Solstice when it begins growing again.

Choose the one or two ideas you need most to work with, then focus on those. Intentions function best when there are only one or two to concentrate on in any cycle. 

Action Suggestions for Summer Solstice:

  • Honor the abundant Earth mother.
  • Create a ceremony theme around fulfillment and manifestation.
  • Feel and express your passion and vibrancy for life.
  • Work with abundance and dance to fully activate and allow the energy of abundance to flow through your body.
  • Work with the hot summer solar fire as an element of transformation.
  • Work with and honor herbs and the green growing season.


Purifying Fire Ritual:
The midsummer bonfires were a communal event and each of a village’s family members were required to contribute firewood, straw, and twigs to the fires. Once a bonfire was extinguished, villages would remove embers or ash and place them in the earth near their homes.

Each person needs:
A bundle of twigs
Cinnamon essential oil

Fire has a purifying quality. In ancient medical practices, doctors would use fire to cleanse and seal wounds. Fire purifies because it exhausts a source of fuel completely and cleanly. When something is burned completely, thoroughly, it is gone – cleansed from existence.  In this practice, we will cleanse our spirits of unwanted energies, toxic forces, and in the process, can unburden our lives of wasted energy. Gather your bundle of twigs, and anoint it with oil. Close your eyes, and sense where in your body you are holding any dark, hot, or heavy energies.  You do not need to name the energies, just sense where they are.  Imagine those energies funneling out of your body and into the anointed twigs in your hands – flowing from your palms into this small vessel provided by mother earth.  When you are done, place the bundle in the fire.  Light and burn!

Sun Sharing Ritual:
Everyone grounds and centers.
Feel the rays of the sun on your face, welcoming its power into you.

Today, we are celebrating the power and energy of the sun. Tomorrow marks the longest day of the year; from Yule to now, the sun has been moving ever closer to the earth. Summer has truly fully arrived, full of light, warmth, and abundance.

(Light sun candle in center)

Symbolically, the goddess is pregnant with the child of her consort, the Sun god, and so we celebrate life, motherhood, and the love of family. Flowers are blooming, crops are growing, and life is in full force.  So, today, we honor the gods and goddesses of the sun, those archetypes of the sun energy that we can all look to for inspiration.

We hail Ra, whose mighty chariot brings us light each morning.
We hail Apollo, who brings us the healing energies of the sun.
We hail Helios, whose great steeds race the flames across the sky.
We hail Hestia, whose sacred flame lights our way in the darkness.
We hail Sunna, who is sister of the moon, and bringer of light.
We hail Corn Mother, who brings us nourishment and self care.
We hail Eki, who protects us all from dark energies.

We accept the gifts all of these beings bring to our lives.  We can draw upon their strength, their energy, their healing light and life giving power.

The sun is the ultimate source of fire and light. Like all sources of light, the sun shines brightly and spreads around the world. Even as it gives its light and power to each of us and the entire planet, it is never diminished by the sharing of that energy. The sun passes over us each day, in a never-ending circle of light. So, today, we happily share that light and warmth with each other, passing it around our circle.

May you be warmed and rejuvenated by the light of the sun!

Even as we share this bit of sun energy with each other, we know the sun radiates out, never fading.  The light and warmth of today will stay within each of us, even as the days now grow shorter and the nights grow cooler once more, and the wheel of the year continues turning.

Other great ritual ideas here.

Summer solstice insight meditation here.

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