The gardens are blooming, and summer is in full swing. Fire up the barbeque, turn on the sprinkler, and enjoy the celebrations of Midsummer! Also called Litha, this summer solstice Sabbat honors the longest day of the year. Take advantage of the extra hours of daylight and spend as much time as you can outdoors. While you're planning your celebrations, though, you may want to take a minute to read up on:
Rituals and Ceremonies
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. 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 you may want to think about trying -- and remember, any of them can be adapted for either a solitary practitioner or a small group, with just a little planning ahead.
- Midsummer Night's Fire Ritual
- Amergin Nature Meditation
- Celebrate Fathers
- Tool Recharging Ritual
- Prayers for Litha
- Ten Great Ways to Celebrate Litha
Traditions and Trends
Interested in learning about some of the history behind Litha? Here's some background on Midsummer celebrations - learn who the gods and goddesses of summer are, how they've been honored throughout the centuries, and about the magic of stone circles!
- Deities of the Summer Solstice
- Litha Folklore and Customs
- Setting up Your Litha Altar
- Litha Altar Photo Gallery
- The Oak King vs. the Holly King
- Germanic Pagans and Aerra Litha
- The Romans Honor Juno and Vesta
- The Vestalia Celebration
- Ra, the Sun God
- Sun Worship
- The Sun Dance
- Stone Circles
- Sacred Springs and Holy Wells
- Wildcrafting Herbs
Handfasting Season is Here!
June is a traditional time for weddings, but if you're Pagan or Wiccan, a Handfasting ceremony may be more appropriate. Read on to find out the origins of this custom, how you can have a fantastic ceremony, selecting a cake, and some great ideas on gifts for your guests!
- Handfasting History: An Old Tradition Made New
- How to Have a Magical Ceremony
- Handfasting Favors: Magical Gifts for Your Guests
- Deities of Love and Marriage
- Basic Handfasting Ceremony
- Jumping the Broom: Besom Weddings
- Selecting a Handfasting Cake
- Handfasting Bonfire Safety
- Check Out Our Readers' Handfasting Photos!
Crafts and Creations
As Litha approaches, you can decorate your home (and keep your kids entertained) with a number of easy craft projects. Celebrate the sun's energy with an elemental garden, a fiery incense blend, and a magic staff to use in ritual!
- Create an Elemental Garden
- Midsummer fire incense
- Handfasting Basket (13 Blessings)
- Make a Set of Ogham Staves
- Make a Magic Staff
- Stone Circle Sundial
- Lavender Dream Pillow
- Litha Blessing Besom
Feasting and Food
No Pagan celebration is complete without a meal to go along with it. For Litha, celebrate with foods that honor the fire and energy of the sun. Enjoy light summery snack wraps, some fiery grilled salmon, spicy and sweet candied ginger, and more.