The Wheel of the Year spins onward, sluggishly in the heat of summer where I live. Leaves are dusty, grass is brown, even the ocean water is warm. The first harvest of vegetables and fruit is long past. It’s too early to think of autumn harvest, of golden wheat and abundant gardens, but there was a time, right after the last ice age, when August was the time of the first grain harvest.
To celebrate the August harvest, the ancient Celts honored the Sun God Lugh, (also thought to be a king adopted into the Celtic pantheon of the Tuatha De Danann) who was skilled in many crafts, including smithery, poetry, and sword-making. They named the holiday Lughnasadh. Another legend says Lugh himself created the holiday in honor of his foster mother. Later, the church tried to Christianize the holiday by renaming it Lammas, or “loaf mass.”
It’s interesting to note that in the Southern Hemisphere now is the holiday of Imbolc, honoring Brigit, goddess of smithery, fire, poetry, sacred wells and lambing. I love the balance, the yin/yang of the cycle of the seasons.
Most of all, the pagan harvest festivals remind us to offer gratitude for the gifts of abundance in our lives. I have so much for which I am grateful. Even as I write this, I am in air-conditioning, drinking iced tea, eating a tomato sandwich on really good bread, and watching butterflies, squirrels and birds take turns at the bird bath under a brilliant blue sky. It’s the little things.
I also am grateful that my website is finally up and running well again after many months of changes, transitions and crazy issues. So, welcome to my new and improved website!! You’ll find information easy to find, and ordering my available services is a piece of cake!
And, if you’re near Mystic Elements, join us on Wednesday, Aug. 3 at 6 pm for our FREE Lammas ritual. Bring a small candle and something small that represents the holiday.
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