The summer time solstice, also called midsummer, or Litha within the pagan custom, is the longest and lightest day of the yr within the Northern Hemisphere. That’s as a result of it’s the purpose when the solar reaches its northernmost level within the sky within the constellation of Most cancers. Whereas there may be some annual variability, it most frequently happens on June twenty first, which can also be the primary day of Most cancers season.
A couple of years in the past, I used to be lucky sufficient to rejoice the summer time solstice method up in Reykjavik, Iceland. I’ll always remember the expertise of strolling alone across the marina at midnight, the large transport boats bathed in a wealthy, golden mild. The ensuing vitality of a lot solar is huge and bountiful, and the collective spirits are typically excessive as individuals come collectively and benefit from the sunshine, seasonal meals, and nature.
11 Summer time Solstice Rituals To Attempt
Including in just a few particular practices or rituals will be an effective way to tune in to the distinctive vitality of the season and honor the heat, mild, abundance, and camaraderie that the day brings. Listed here are just a few straightforward methods to remodel this yr’s solstice right into a particular summer time celebration:
1. Have a ritual tub
Run a lukewarm tub (particularly if it’s a sizzling evening), mild a circle of candles round it in honor of the height photo voltaic vitality, sprinkle in some flower petals from in-season blooms round you, and add just a few drops of your brightest important oils (suppose: jasmine, geranium, rose, lavender, bergamot, or clary sage).
After your enjoyable soak, stand within the water and scrub your physique down with a do-it-yourself honey and salt scrub made by merely combining 3 tablespoons of honey with 3 tablespoons of sea salt in a small container (this rose honey scrub is nice for the face should you’d desire!). Rinse it off whereas visualizing any undesirable heaviness or caught energies being scrubbed and washed away.
As you drain the bathtub and blow out your candles, take a second to replicate in gratitude on the sweetness and abundance you have already got in your life to create a vibration that welcomes in much more.
2. Collect flowers
Probably the most conventional methods to honor midsummer is to assemble flowers and set them out in an ample show. You probably have flowers (and even fantastically flowering weeds!) in your backyard, you may use these, or drop by your native florist and select blooms which can be each native and in season.
—Smaller flowers will be woven right into a garland or crown.
—Bigger stems will be labored right into a wreath on your door or a centerpiece for the desk.
—Set some contemporary flowers in your altar (you probably have one).
—Separating flower from a big bouquet into smaller bunches and putting them in numerous locations round your house so as to add to the bountiful feeling.
3. Feast exterior
Consuming exterior, whether or not which means heading out for a picnic, having a BBQ, or just shifting your desk open air, is an effective way to rejoice the brightest evening of the yr. Select a menu based mostly on native, seasonal fruit and veggies, which within the Northern Hemisphere would possibly embody strawberries, peaches, plums, cherries, inexperienced beans, dandelion, corn, eggplant, cucumbers, tomatoes, and melons.
Add within the seasonal herbs, too, particularly you probably have them rising in your yard or porch pots. Nothing says summer time like contemporary inexperienced herbs!
4. Brew a backyard mix iced tea
Another excuse I like to develop my very own herbs and flowers is that I can make my very own teas (they’re nice for cocktails, too!) In peak summer time, among the most strong crops in my backyard additionally make one of the best brews.
Select no matter you may have available, comparable to lavender, rose hips, chamomile, mint (develop this one in a pot—it spreads like a weed!), lemon balm, echinacea, lemon verbena, or dandelion root, and mix them collectively as you want. Pour 1 liter of boiling water over 1 cup of herbs and permit them to set for 3 to five minutes, then pressure by way of a sieve.
After the brewed tea has had time to chill, chill it within the fridge, and sweeten with honey for a wonderfully refreshing summer time drink.
5. Mild a bonfire
Making bonfires to rejoice the summer time solstice is a long-established pagan custom. Why not deliver collectively family and friends for an enormous hearth, and rejoice the longest evening of the yr together with your nearest and dearest?
For the normal Litha rituals in Eire, celebrants used to carry a stone of their pocket and stroll across the hearth thrice considering of a want. Then they’d toss the stone into the flames, keen it to be granted. Fireplace is a robust manifesting factor, and on an evening with such huge solar energy, this can be a fantastic technique to work with it.
6. Bake with honey
Honey is a sweetener utilized in many pagan traditions of the summer time (usually in mead and candy breads), and these summer time solstice honey cookies lined in herbs and flowers make an ideal dessert or snack. This rustic honey cake additionally hits the mark!
7. Solar energy your wardrobe
Within the Wiccan custom, that is the day to deliver out your brightest, sunniest clothes. Gown up in reds, oranges, and yellows, adorn your self with wild florals, placed on any warming yellow gold jewellery, and if potential, go away your sneakers inside. Strolling barefoot in nature is a robust technique to join with the grounding vitality of the earth [source].
8. Do a tarot unfold
I really like utilizing important seasonal markers as a chance to carry a dialog with my playing cards. Since there are six months between the height mild of summer time solstice and the longest evening of winter, why not work with the playing cards to take a look at the potential for progress that lies forward throughout that point?
Set the stage on your studying with flowers and light-weight a candle, shuffle your playing cards, and lay three on the desk in entrance of you:
—the first card symbolizes the vitality you might be being requested to embody and embrace over the approaching months
—the second card speaks to the vitality you might be being requested to shed and launch as a way to flourish into the autumn and winter season
—the third card symbolizes the primary lesson you might be being requested to be taught and combine as you progress into the months to return.
Journal whereas diving into the impressions and insights you might be getting from the playing cards, and are available again round to it in winter to replicate in your progress.
9. Follow yoga or meditation
Each summer time solstice, I maintain a collective observe of 108 solar salutations for my native yoga group. We come collectively (or stream remotely) and observe in a big circle. I set 9 clusters of 12 small pebbles forward of my mat, and after the completion of every solar salutation, drag one of many pebbles into the middle.
After every set of 9, we take a short break to stretch and drink water after which preserve going till we’ve accomplished our full cycle of 108. Whereas this can be a sacred quantity within the Vedic custom—the variety of beads on a mala—you’ll be able to at all times observe as many as you’ll be able to whereas contemplating the heat and interior hearth you might be creating together with your physique to be an providing.
If meditation is extra your factor, think about working towards a strolling silent meditation in nature. Discover a quiet outside spot (ideally grassy). And if it’s protected so that you can be barefoot, stroll with one sluggish, acutely aware footstep at a time in a big circle, every step slowly lifting the foot on the inhalation and reducing it forward of you on the exhalation.
You may maintain your arms together with your elbows barely bent and fingers resting close to your low stomach, or allow them to relaxation at your sides. Set a timer, if wanted, in order that you’ll be able to transfer extra deeply into the meditative nature of the motion with out worrying about time.
10. Serve your native surroundings
Environmental stewardship is an effective way to honor the solstice, because it displays not solely a deep respect for the land we’re so lucky to reside on however makes a distinction in your area people as effectively. Collect along with a bunch of households or mates to choose up litter in close by parks or gardens (at all times put on gloves!), and calm down with some solstice treats afterward!
11. Lay it on the road
Whereas that is actually a summer time tip generally, I’m including it in right here as a result of it brings me a lot pleasure! If you’re blessed with a sizzling, sunny day this solstice, why not wash up the sheets within the morning, tie up a laundry line, and air dry your bedding within the sunshine?
I promise you, the rewards that evening might be nice, as there may be nothing fairly like sliding right into a mattress that smells so extremely contemporary and clear…and the photo voltaic vitality additionally helps to kill any residual micro organism which may be lingering within the fibers.
Irrespective of which solstice practices, rituals, or traditions you select to include, they’ll all assist to set this big day aside, marking the purpose the place the sunshine begins its shift towards the yin, quiet, introspective nature of winter’s Yuletide as soon as once more. Could your longest day be crammed with laughter, pleasure, celebration, household, mates, and nature!