Flashback 2008 – Summer Solstice

When the Sun is at its peak in the sky at our Summer Solstice, Earth is as close as possible to the Sun. Litha is the ancient Germanic name for summer and the time to celebrate its warmth. This important time in the solar year is when the Oak King, God of Light, hands over the reign to the Holly King, God of Darkness, who rules from this point forward for the other half of the year.

At this time when light will begin to wane, decorate your altar and house with sunflowers. Place honey on your altar to represent life’s sweetness. Light the same gold candle for a short time for four to five nights over this period. On the last evening, after the candle is safely snuffed, wrap what is left of it in a yellow ribbon or gold colored cloth and keep it somewhere safe for protection and good fortune until next Litha.

Make a sunflower solstice cake decorated with yellow icing and sunflower seeds to share with your friends over a glass of mead. Enjoy your time outdoors, allowing the Sun to warm your body as you relax, walk, or read. Bid farewell to the Sun god for a few months and be assured he will return.

Copyright Emely Flak – Llewellyn Witches’ Datebook 2008 Pg 79

Midsummer/Summer Solstice

Author: Christina Aubin [a WitchVox Sponsor]
Posted: June 23rd. 2001
Times Viewed: 111,351

“Turn your face to the sun and the shadows fall behind you.” — Maori proverb

Summer Solstice falls at the precise moment when the Sun’s power is at its zenith. It is the time of year when the noon sun appears to be farthest north from the celestial equator. “Solstice” is Latin for “sun stands still” (sol “sun” and sistere “to stand”). Summer Solstice is so named because to the naked eye the sun appears stationary in its northern and southern progression. The sun is directly over the tropic of Cancer at the summer solstice, at which time the sun is 23¡27′ north. The sun travels 23.5 degrees to reach its maximum distance from the celestial equator during both the summer and winter solstice.

It is the longest day and shortest night of the year. From the moment of Summer Solstice, the Sun immediately begins to wane. The journey into the harvest season has begun.

Midsummer has been one of the important solar events throughout the evolution of humankind. It was an indicator that the year was about to begin waning, thus winter would be again returning. Although not all the ancients were as precise in the calculations from an astronomical point, you can be sure that they were keenly aware of the sun’s progression, and did most assuredly know when Solstice was upon them, as the sun appeared to stand still in its northern progression.

The axis of Stonehenge, which aligns with the monument’s entrance, is oriented in the direction of the midsummer sunrise…

For the rest of this article please click on this link: http://www.witchvox.com/va/dt_va.html?a=usma&c=holidays&id=3525

Happy Summer Solstice

By The Wild Hunt on Jun 18, 2016 08:04 pm

TWH – For many people around the world, this weekend marks the celebration of theSummer Solstice, also known as Midsummer or Litha. It is at this time that the Northern Hemisphere is tilted closest to the sun. The astrological date for this year’s solstice is June 20, 22:34 UTC (or 6:34 pm ET).

In honor of the abundance of daylight and sunshine, communities have long used bonfires, music, dancing, and outdoor festivals as traditional features of both religious rituals and secular celebrations. In some modern Pagan practices, it is believed that this holiday represents the highest ascendancy of masculine divinity.

At the same time, our friends in the Southern Hemisphere are experiencing the exact opposite. They are coming together to celebrate and mark the winter solstice – a time of darkness, candles and inward reflection.

Sunflower fields near Fargo, SD. Photo by Hephaestos.

Sunflower fields near Fargo, SD. [Photo Credit: Hephaestos]

This 2016 solstice event is particularly special. It will be the first time in 70 years that the full moon is happening at the same time. Slooh.com will be broadcasting the rare event live.

There are several international secular holidays that correspond to the midsummer holiday. In 1982, Make Music Day, held annually June 21, was established in France and has since spread to become a global solstice celebration of sound. And, on that same day, others will be honoring the United Nations’ official International Yoga Day, while still others will be taking to the warm summer mountain trails to celebrate Naked Hiking Day.

Additionally, the summer solstice typically falls on or around the celebration of Father’s Day in the United States. The history of this secular holiday does not have the same radical roots as its counterpart Mother’s Day. In 1908, a Washington state woman named Sonora Smart Dodd, who had been raised by a widower, wanted male parents to be honored in a similar way as mothers. In 1910, Dodd was able to convince the state to establish an official Father’s Day. The idea spread very slowly, meeting much resistance. Many felt that the holiday was silly, and others protested against the establishment of yet another commercially-focused celebration. However, after being given a boost by World War II nationalism, the unofficial Father’s Day was widely embraced by people around the country. Then, in 1972, Richard Nixon signed the proclamation that made the day an official U.S. holiday.

June also marks gay pride month — officially proclaimed this year as Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Pride Month — which has grown in popularity over the past few decades. Events are specifically held in June to mark the anniversary of the Stonewall Rebellion, which happened in New York City on June 28, 1969.

Similarly, in the social spectrum, June 19 marks the formal end of slavery in the U.S. and is often called Juneteenth or Emancipation Day. While it is not widely celebrated, the holiday is reportedly becoming more popular and gaining ground in cities and local venues. The day is currently marked as an official state holiday in Texas.

While those celebrations mentioned above are all examples of secular-based traditions, there are just as many religious-based holidays that occur at this time, many of which are honored by modern Pagans, Heathens and polytheists.  As already noted, there is the celebration of Litha or Midsummer, or conversely Yule and Midwinter.

The Fires of St. John festival, a Christian-holiday, is also held at this time in many countries and is closely associated with the older midsummer solstice’s traditions, including bonfires and feasts. Similar celebrations are found in many European countries, often known by different names.

In Vodun, Lucumi and other African diaspora religions, there are a number of feast days celebrated around this time, including the Feast of Ochossi and Feast of Eleggua.

In modern Hellenic reconstruction, the festival of Promethea occurs on June 21. One of the traditions is to eat fennel, which this is what Prometheos used to smuggle fire to man.

Solstice Fire at Pagan Spirit Gathering

Solstice Fire at Pagan Spirit Gathering [Courtesy Photo]

Here are some thoughts on the season:

“Litha or Midsummer, a time of bonfires, mugwort, mythical beings, nights and days of mischief and love. The veil is thin. The Celts, the Norse and the Slavs believed that there were three ‘spirit nights’ in the year when magic ran amok and the Otherworld was near. The first was Halloween, the second was May Eve and the third was Midsummer Eve. All sorts of enchantments are in the air now and Spirits and Fairies abound.” –  Danette Wilson, “Outside the Circle: The Bad Fairies of Litha

*    *    *

“As we honor the solstice we may reach out to the sun, but while doing so we will also reach out to those that have been lost. We will grieve for them and we will grieve with them. Hopefully the energy we raise in their remembrance will inspire us to help bring about the change that will make for better tomorrows. This Midsummer will be a somber sabbat, but that’s what it should be.” – Jason Mankey, “A Somber Solstice

*    *    *

“There’s a powerful juxtaposing of realities going on right now: one is the world as we know it, with an ethos of fear and scarcity, and an ugly underbelly that’s so evident in the horrific news of recent weeks; and the other is a life-centered ethos revealed in Nature’s emerging summertime landscape of stunning beauty and overflowing abundance.” – Karen Clark, “Three Lessons from the Summer Solstice

*    *    *

“If we shadows have offended,
Think but this, and all is mended,
That you have but slumbered here
While these visions did appear.” –  Shakespeare, A Midsummer Night’s Dream.

*    *    *

However you choose to celebrate the season, a very happy solstice to everyone!

The strawberry full moon makes this summer solstice a super rare thing

This year the heavenly bodies seem to have conspired to sweeten the pot with an event we haven’t seen in 70 years.

The summer solstice isn’t a rare event, a full moon even less so. But they’re both special, and when they just so happen to occur on the same day, as they will this year? That’s once-in-a-lifetime special.

The 2016 North American summer solstice happens on June 20, 2016 at 6:34 PM EDT. That’s the very moment when, essentially, the sun stands still at its northernmost point as seen from Earth. Its zenith doesn’t yearn north or south, but waits patiently at the Tropic of Cancer before switching directions and heading south again. This is where the word solstice comes from; the Latin solstitium, from sol (sun) and stitium (to stop).

For the rest of this article please click on this link http://www.treehugger.com/natural-sciences/strawberry-full-moon-makes-summer-solstice-super-rare-thing.html

It’s Time to Celebrate the Solstice! – Litha

Litha Rites & Rituals

Depending on your individual spiritual path, there are many different ways you can celebrate Litha, but the focus is nearly always on celebrating the power of the sun. Litha, the summer solstice, falls around June 21 in the northern hemisphere, and around December 21 below the equator. It’s the time of year when the crops are growing heartily and the earth has warmed up. We can spend long sunny afternoons enjoying the outdoors, and getting back to nature under the long daylight hours. Here are a few rituals that can be adapted for either a solitary practitioner or a small group.

Setting Up Your Litha Altar

Litha is a time of celebrating the sun, and spending as much time as you can outdoors. Try to set up your Midsummer altar outside if at all possible. If you can’t, that’s okay — but try to find a spot near a window where the sun will shine in and brighten your altar setup with its rays. Set Up Your Litha Altar More »

Hold a Backyard Barbecue Ritual for Litha

Litha falls in the middle of summer, right before things start to get unbearably hot in most parts of the world, so it’s a perfect time to celebrate by having friends and family over for a cookout. Why not take advantage of this get-together and turn it into a fun celebration of the summer solstice? After all, if summer is about having fun with the people you love, a Litha backyard barbecue is the perfect way to mark the season! Hold a Backyard Barbecue Ritual More »

Hold a Sun Ritual for Midsummer

Midsummer is the time of the summer solstice, theLitha sabbat, and it’s the longest day of the year. Falling around June 21 in the northern hemisphere, and around December 21 below the equator, this is a time to celebrate the warmth and power of the sun. It’s a great time of year to get outside, enjoy the extra hours of daylight, and celebrate the season with family and friends. You can do this ritual as a group or adapt it to perform as a solitary practitioner. Hold a Sun Ritual for Midsummer More »

Midsummer Night’s Fire Ritual

Although this particular Midsummer ritual isn’t ancient, it is inspired by the traditions and legends of the Celts of the British Isles. Take advantage of the long hours of daylight to celebrate Litha, or Alban Heruin, and honor the solstice outdoors under the skies. If you’re interested in Celtic lore, or wish to honor the Triple Goddess, this might be the perfect ritual for you. Midsummer Night’s Fire Ritual More »

To read more ideas by Patti Wigington please click on this link http://paganwiccan.about.com/od/LithaRituals/tp/Litha-Rites-amp-Rituals.htm?utm_content=20160617&utm_medium=email&utm_source=exp_nl&utm_campaign=list_paganwiccan&utm_term=list_paganwiccan

 

 

 

 

Summer Solstice/Litha/Midsummer

Chapter 10 ~ A MIDSUMMER SPELL FOR DIRECTION AND RESOLUTION This is a ritual designed to help you find direction, solutions to problems and the determination to see it through. At Midsummer, around June 21st, the Holly King vanquishes the Oak King and the daylight hours begin to shorten. We need to make a decision and a commitment to embrace change before the long, hot, lazy days of summer slow us down and weaken our willpower. QUICK SPELL Find a quiet, comfortable place where you will not be disturbed. You will need the following items: one gold candle, vervain oil and rosemary incense. Use the oil to anoint the candle and your forehead. Light the candle and the incense and sit silently for a few moments, then ask the Goddess Diana to guide your meditation. Perform the following meditation: Half the year is now over. It is time to face any problems or dilemmas that require immediate attention. No matter how insignificant a situation may seem, if it comes to mind now, a solution is worth pursuing! Relax and breathe deeply. Imagine that you are an archer on horseback. Picture yourself riding at breakneck speed through an ancient forest. See the brilliant sun flickering through the cool green canopy of trees. Smell the mossy aroma,

feel the leaves and branches brushing against you and hear the pounding of the horse’s hooves hitting the hard, damp earth. While you are acutely aware of your surroundings, you are also searching for a solution to a troubling dilemma. Suddenly, you come to a clearing and your steed slows down. Ahead, you see a spiral target. You sense that this is your opportunity for resolution, if you are quick enough to take it. You steady your horse and slowly and deliberately pull an arrow from your quiver. Once it is set in your bow, you aim and let it fly. As it hits the centre of the target, it bursts into flames. You have hit the mark perfectly. After this happens, say: I am the hunter, strong and bold with all the courage a heart can hold. Show me the path that I must take, give me direction – my soul awaits. Recall any problems you are currently facing. Write a word or two about them in your Book of Shadows, along with the above affirmation. When you are finished, give thanks for your blessings. After the quick spell, resolve to immediately tackle any outstanding issues. Consult your Book of Shadows for inspiration. FULL CEREMONY You may choose to complete the full ceremony below. Performing the entire ritual around an altar may help to focus your energies in a more powerful way, but remember, the most important part of any spell is your intent.

 

THE RITUAL 1: Set your altar as usual with the appropriate cleansed and charged tools plus one gold festival candle, vervain or Summer Solstice oil and rosemary incense. You will create a festival talisman, using a philtre made in advance from the list of correspondences below. Bring it, plus a pen, paper, one 9” x 9” (23 cm x 23 cm) piece of yellow, orange or gold fabric and string or ribbon, to the altar. Carve the gold festival candle with the Rune symbol for Warrior. Anoint your forehead and the other candles with the oil. Light the candles and the incense. 2: If necessary, the High Priestess begins the introductions. 3: Walk anticlockwise at least 3 times around the altar to close the circle. Meditate and chant: May the power of Midsummer bring success to our spellwork, or something similar in your own words. 4: The circle is now closed. Summon the Four Elements and the Goddess Diana, the Hunter, as follows: Facing east, raise the blade and say: We greet thee East, manifest as air and the blade. Grace this circle with your knowledge and inspiration. Join us now. Blessed be! Facing south, raise the wand and say: We greet thee South, manifest as fire and the wand. Empower this circle with your energy and courage. Join us now. Blessed be! Facing west, raise the cup and say: We greet thee West, manifest as water and the chalice. Fill this circle with your love and enlightenment. Join us now. Blessed be!

Facing north, raise the pentacle and say: We greet thee North, manifest as earth and the pentacle. Strengthen this circle with your wisdom and initiative. Join us now. Blessed be! Face the altar and say: The circle is one. We are one with the circle. Goddess Diana, join us now. Blessed be! 5: Raise energy by toning, humming or using the sound “Ohmm.” When you feel the energy peak, stop chanting and hold the power within the circle. You are ready to begin your spell. 6: Give thanks for the blessings from the last festival. The theme for Midsummer is to find direction and resolution. 7: Read the following meditation: Half the year is now over. It is time to face any problems or dilemmas that require immediate attention. No matter how insignificant a situation may seem, if it comes to mind now, a solution is worth pursuing! Relax and breathe deeply. Close your eyes and imagine that you are an archer on horseback. Picture yourself riding at breakneck speed through an ancient forest. See the brilliant sun flickering through the cool green canopy of trees. Smell the mossy aroma, feel the leaves and branches brushing against you and hear the pounding of the horse’s hooves hitting the hard, damp earth. While you are acutely aware of your surroundings, you are also searching for a solution to a troubling dilemma. Suddenly, you come to a clearing and your

steed slows down. Ahead, you see a spiral target. You sense that this is your opportunity for resolution, if you are quick enough to take it. You steady your horse and slowly and deliberately pull an arrow from your quiver. Once it is set in your bow, you aim and let it fly. As it hits the centre of the target, it bursts into flames. You have hit the mark perfectly. After this happens, say: I am the hunter, strong and bold with all the courage a heart can hold. Show me the path that I must take, give me direction – my soul awaits. Recall any problems you are currently facing. Write a word or two about their resolution on your parchment, along with the above affirmation. Wrap it around your Midsummer philtre and tie it in your talisman pouch along with any appropriate stones or secrets. Cleanse the talisman by holding it over the incense and saying: I cleanse thee by the power of Midsummer. So mote it be. Then charge it by touching it with the blade, saying: I charge thee by the power of Midsummer. So mote it be. 8 & 9: Food and drink break to revitalize the group and/ or any additional spellwork or requests. 10: When you are ready, say farewell and thanks to the Goddess and the four elements. Facing center: Goddess, we give thanks for your blessings. Facing north: North, we give thanks for your blessings.

Facing west: West, we give thanks for your blessings. Facing south: South, we give thanks for your blessings. Facing east: East, we give thanks for your blessings. 11: Unwind the circle by walking clockwise at least 3 times. The circle is now open. Extinguish the candles or let them burn down safely. AFTER THE SPELL Keep the talisman close to you and recall your vision twice daily. A solution will appear before the next festival. May your resolution be swift and satisfying. Blessed be! MIDSUMMER /SUMMER SOLSTICE CORRESPONDENCES THEME: strength, reward, confidence, decision making, shorter days COLOURS: yellow, red, orange, gold OIL: lavender, vervain, elder (cedar) PHILTRE: elder blossoms, mugwort, vervain, st. john’s wort, rosemary, rue, oak bark CANDLES: red, yellow, orange FLOWERS: honeysuckle, lavender, roses, rue, vervain, any red, yellow & orange flowers INCENSE: rosemary STONES: agate, pearl, moonstone FOOD & DRINK: elderflower wine or mead, tomato soup*, cucumber salad, pesto pasta*, edible flower cookies*

Zurich, Holly. Simple Wiccan Magick Spells and Ritual Ceremony (Kindle Locations 1117-1132). Amazon.com. Kindle Edition.

This book is available for $0.99 USD on Amazon.com https://www.amazon.com/Simple-Wiccan-Magick-Spells-Ceremony-ebook/dp/B004OR1UH2/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1465907328&sr=8-1&keywords=Zurich%2C+Holly.+Simple+Wiccan+Magick+Spells+and+Ritual+Ceremony

If you do not have a Kindle reader you may get an app for your phone, computer or tablet free on Amazon.com.

Litha by Herne

Although the name Litha is not well attested, it may come from Saxon tradition — the opposite of Yule. On this longest day of the year, light and life are abundant. At mid-summer, the Sun God has reached the moment of his greatest strength. Seated on his greenwood throne, he is also lord of the forests, and his face is seen in church architecture peering from countless foliate masks.

The Christian religion converted this day of Jack-in-the-Green to the Feast of St. John the Baptist, often portraying him in rustic attire, sometimes with horns and cloven feet (like the Greek Demi-God Pan)

Midsummer Night’s Eve is also special for adherents of the Faerie faith. The alternative fixed calendar date of June 25 (Old Litha) is sometimes employed by Covens. The name Beltane is sometimes incorrectly assigned to this holiday by some modern traditions of Wicca, even though Beltane is the Gaelic word for May.

TTo read the rest of this article please click on this link: https://wicca.com/celtic/akasha/litha.htm

Summer Solstice/ Midsummer

20th – 23rd of June

Litha is the Summer Solstice, it is midsummer – the longest day and the shortest night of the year.

Solstice is a time to stand still, to stop and take stock of our lives and what we are doing, to celebrate what we have achieved and to acknowledge our failures, make sense of our actions and learn from them.

The Summer Solstice is a time to count our blessings, to celebrate life and pass on the spirit of generosity and goodwill.

The Earth is pregnant with the coming harvest and the Sun is at His peak.

~SYMBOLS~

Fire, Sun, Oak Trees, Sun Wheels, Flowers, Sunflowers, Fruit, Faeries, Sickles, Seashells and Circles.

~IN THE GARDEN~

The Summer Solstice is an excellent time to harvest herbs for drying, to use in magical works. Herbs collected on the eve of midsummer or early in the morning, have a special kind of energy. Remember to keep dead heading the flowers as this as this will encourage new ones. Save the flower heads and dry them to use the petals for incense  and magical workings.

~HERBS~

Chamomile, Rose, Honeysuckle, Oak, Ivy, Lavender, Yarrow, Elder, Thyme, Carnation, Mugwort, Fennel, Ginger, Lemon, Basil and St John’s Wort.

~COLOURS~

Yellow, Gold, Green, Blue, Orange, White and Red.

~SPELL WORKINGS~

Abundance, Wishes, Love, Healing and Prosperity.

This is a small portion from a wise Priestess and I highly recommend this book to all Witches, be they New path or Crone.  It is full of meditations, correspondences, magical workings and even a bit of Hoodoo plus so much more.

From: High Priestess Rachel Patterson

Grimoire of a Kitchen Witch

Brightest Blessings Sisters and Brothers,

SunRay Sorceress

 

10 Things About the December Solstice

In most time zones, December 22, 2015 is the shortest day of the year in the Northern Hemisphere. Here are 10 things about the December Solstice you might not know:

Illustration image
The December solstice in the Northern Hemisphere.

©bigstockphoto.com/Yanika

1. Both Winter and Summer Solstice
The December Solstice is the winter solstice in the Northern Hemisphere, where it is the shortest day of the year.

Sunrise, Sunset & Daylength in Your City
In the Southern Hemisphere, it is opposite, where it is the longest day of the year, the summer solstice. In the Northern Hemisphere, in terms of sunlight.

2. Second Solstice of the Year
Solstices happen twice a year – once around June 21 and then again around December 21. On the June Solstice, the Sun is directly overhead the Tropic of Cancer in the Northern Hemisphere, while on the December Solstice, the Sun shines directly over the Tropic of Capricorn in the Southern Hemisphere.

For the rest of this article click on the following link: http://www.timeanddate.com/calendar/ten-things-december-solstice.html