we are moving right along with the wheel of the year, and Midsummer marks the summer solstice in the northern hemisphere. Time for enjoying the outdoors and the longer day and night. It falls around June 19-22 it’s a celebration of the Sun God.
Litha (Midsummer, Gathering Day, Summer Solstice, Alban Heffyn, Feill-Sheathain)
Incense: Sage, mint, basil, Saint John’s Wort, sunflower, Lavender
Decorations: Dried herbs, potpourri, seashells, summer flowers, and fruits.
Colours: blue, green, and yellow
Midsummer or the Summer Solstice is the most powerful day of the year for the Sun God. Because this Sabbat glorifies the Sun God and the Sun, fire plays a very prominent role in this festival. The element of Fire is the most easily seen and immediately felt element of transformation. It can burn, consume, cook, shed light or purify and balefires still figure prominently at modern Midsummer rites.
Most cultures of the Northern Hemisphere mark Midsummer in some ritualised manner and from time immemorial people have acknowledged the rising of the sun on this day. At Stonehenge, the heelstone marks the midsummer sunrise as seen from the centre of the stone circle.
Since this sabbat revolves around the sun, a candle should be lit for the entire day, especially if it is cloudy or raining. The fire represents the sun and is a constant daily reminder of the power of the God. Rituals should be performed at noon, when the sun is highest in the sky. The best rituals to perform on Midsummer are those dealing with masculine issues, masculine energies, or issues dealing with solar influence.
Many pagans choose to make protective amulets, in the week before the Sabbat, which are later empowered over the Midsummer balefire. Some witches choose to bury their protective amulets each Midsummer’s eve and construct new ones. Rue, rowan and basil, tied together in a white or gold cloth, is a good protective trio that can be carried in your pocket year round.
Midsummer is the time to formalize any relationship and couples that have been together a year and a day since the previous Beltane can make their marriage final. This Sabbat is also an excellent time to re-new wedding vows.
Sage, mint, basil, Saint John’s Wort, sunflower, mistletoe (specifically the berries which represent semen), oak, rowan, and fir.
when you think of Litha think of the colors of fiery and the sun golds, yellows, oranges white.. “Use candles in bright sunny colors, or cover your altar with cloths that represent the solar aspect of the season. If you have the opportunity to do an outdoor altar, consider painting a piece of furniture, such as a table or cabinet, in bright colors to reflect the solar theme. Don’t forget the lights—candles, citronella lamps, and even twinkly string lights are available in every color, so bring that solar energy out even when it gets dark in the evening!” (https://www.learnreligions.com/setting-up-your-litha-altar-2562243) Use solar symbols to represent the sun and its energy it brings this time of year. “In some traditions, the sun rolls across the sky like a great wheel—consider using pinwheels or some other disc to represent the sun. Circles and discs are the most basic sun symbol of all, and are seen as far back as the tombs of ancient Egypt. Use sun masks or equal-armed crosses, such as the Brighid’s Cross, or even the swastika—remember, it was originally a good luck symbol to both the Hindus and Scandinavians before it became associated with the Nazis. The solstice is also a time seen as a battle between light and dark. Although the sun is strong now, in just six months the days will be short again. Much like the battle between the Oak King and the Holly King, light and dark must battle for supremacy. At this sabbat, darkness wins, and the days will begin to grow shorter once more. Decorate your altar with symbols of the triumph of darkness over light—and that includes using other opposites, such as fire and water, night and day, etc” ((https://www.learnreligions.com/setting-up-your-litha-altar-2562243)
Here are ten easy ways to celebrate Lith:
1) Hold a bonfire- Make an offering to our deity of chosen and celebrate the sun with just family or all family and friends..
2) Get back to Nature- Get out and enjoy the sun and soak up the warm rays by taking a hike in nature to reconnect to it’s energy.
3)Get Moving- Will need a large or group or small but a drum circle to get yourself moving and just enjoy the flow of the energy from it. Dance is very therapeutic and is so much fun you don’t even need fancy dance moves.
4)Do something For others- clean out your closet, pantry and garage and get rid of clutter it helps clear negative energy and is revitalizing for creating a better flow of energy in your home and land. Donate things to the food bank, or goodwill or salvation army.
5) Read- Everyone loves a good book take the evenings to unwind from life and enjoy a good book, let your imagination immerse yourself into the book your reading and let the creativity flow.
6)Family- Celebrate your family with a bbq or gathering and turn off the phones and have fun like some of us remember in the summer with us kids running around covered in watermelon or popsicles, or playing in the lake. Family is very important so don’t forget to enjoy the ones you have.
7) Clean- clean your house with warmer weather comes the summer breeze clean your house and open those windows in the evening to let that fresh air in, and clean to rid and negative energy that may have came stagnant there. But who doesn’t love a clean house I know I do..
8) Host a bbq- host a bbq invite friends and family for a good time and good meal. Talk, laugh, and have fun with the ones your close to.
9)Learn and Grow- this one is good take time to hone your practice learn from mistakes and grow into a fine tuned individual or master meditation, or learn a new skill let creativity take over and go with the flow.
10) Honor The Season- “Many ancient cultures marked the summer solstice with rites and rituals honoring the sun. Celebrate the significance of Midsummer with ritual and prayers that recognize the sun and its magnificent power. Set up your Litha altarwith symbols of the season—solar symbols, candles, midsummer fruits and vegetables, and more.”
So however you plan on enjoying the Summer Solstice do it with love, fun and safety always.