But reverence for this day – the day that the Earth’s axial tilt is closest to the sun – came long before our modern scientific understanding of it. Early Europeans used to set large wheels on fire and roll them down a hill into a body of water. Midsummer is the period of time centered upon the summer solstice, and more specifically the northern European celebrations that accompany the actual solstice or take place on a day between June 19 and June 25 and the preceding evening.The exact dates vary among different cultures. Want to go wildcrafting? O'Gaea also explains that in Wiccan tradition, it is custom to wear bright colors such as red, orange, or yellow to signify the sun. Foods associated with Litha include berries, cheese, cake, honey, herbal tea, sunflower seeds, and lemonade. MacCulloch in The Religion of the Ancient Celts. Nov 3, 2014 - Explore Teri Ciacchi's board "Yule", followed by 189 people on Pinterest. Samhain Pagan Yule Mabon Happy Winter Solstice Summer Solstice Winter Solstice Quotes Solstice Festival Stonehenge Yule Traditions 12 Simple Prayers for the Winter Solstice Celebrate the winter solstice and the Yule season by reciting pagan prayers in honor of the earth and the deities of your tradition. The celebration predates Christianity, and existed under different names and traditions around the world. If there's no room for a tree, use a Yule Log instead. Cover the altar with a winter-themed altar cloth if possible, and in the center, three white candles in individual candleholders. Litha, also known as Midsummer or the summer solstice, takes place on June 21. Women would leave offerings for Vesta, hoping that she would bless their homes. This is a great time of year to get outdoors and gather your own herbs. Home Introduction > > > > > > > Contact ... celebration held at the summer solstice. The Pagan celebration of Winter Solstice (also known as Yule) is one of the oldest winter celebrations in the world. The most popular annual tradition sees druids, pagans and enthusiasts gather at Stonehenge to watch the sun rise. More from Delish: Summer Solstice Celebration. Swedish traditions include dancing around a maypole -- … Other celebratory foods might have included fruits like lemons, oranges, mangoes, peaches, or nectarines and vegetables like yellow squash, corn, and heirloom tomatoes. In ancient times, villages used to come together to celebrate the new season or holiday with lots of food, music, and dancing. The summer solstice is a celebration of the longest day of the year when Mother Earth’s orbit around the sun reaches its greatest distance from the equator. More from Delish: Cool Drinks for Hot Summer Days. As you feel the sun warm you, visualize it giving you strength and power that will stay with you throughout the rest of the season. Each Litha, the Oak King would defeat the Holly King and rule for another six months before fighting again at Yule, where the Holly King would win. If you can't be there in your white robes and bare feet to see the sun crest the top of the stone slabs, there are a few ways you can celebrate the Solstice, also known as Litha, Pagan-style. In fact, the word solstice comes from the Latin word solstitium, which means “sun stands still.” Ancient pagans believed that the sun god was at his most powerful at this time, and as such, the element of fire ruled. The date corresponds roughly to the Christian Feast … The Summer Solstice was one of eight sacred Celtic days where the Celts would take time to celebrate through a variety of customs. Midsummer is the Scandinavian holiday celebrating the summer solstice, which in 2019 falls on Friday, June 21. Honey was also a popular ingredient in Pagan customs - especially when used in the making of mead, a honeyed alcoholic beverage. The summer solstice is also associated with festivals such as the Vestalia, in ancient Rome, and with ancient structures like the stone circles found all over the world. Today Latvians still decorate natural fir trees with lighted candles and ornaments. According to tradition, it was said that the Oak King ruled over the warm months while the Holly King ruled over the colder months, and every solstice they would do battle for rulership. The summer solstice is one of four solar holidays, along with the autumnal equinox, the winter solstice and the vernal equinox. Festivities included a deosil (sunwise) dance around a fire or a pole accompanied by chanting and songs of praise for the Sun God, as folklorists at the turn of the 20th century believed. The summer solstice, otherwise known as midsummer, marks both the some pretty typical summer solstice celebrations, especially given the UK's pagan past.Top Summer Solstice Traditions from around the World Romance, celebrations, highlight of pagan calendar The hours of daylight are at their most plentiful and the sun is at its zenith in Northern Europe. Enjoy your treats under the sun. This Tuesday morning at 4:45 am GMT, a massive amount of revelers are expected to gather at Stonehenge as the sun rises over the British plains. At dawn on 21 June - the summer solstice - the central Altar stone aligns with the outer Heel stone and the rising sun. In fact, the word solstice comes from the Latin word solstitium, which means “sun stands still.” Ancient pagans believed that … If that’s not possible, wake up early and watch the sunrise outside. And "if anyone wants to wear garlands or ribbons in their hair, so much the better. Winter Solstice. It’s a great way to watch the sun and receive a spiritual experience. It was also believed that fairies were at their most prevalent during the Solstice. Today we honor the gods and goddesses of the sun. Midsummer and Midsummer’s Eve are very popular in Sweden. Midsummer-related holidays, traditions and celebrations are found in all the Germanic countries of Northern Europe. Celebrating the Seasons of Life: Betane to Mabon, 12 Sweet Popsicles to Keep You from Melting This Summer, Summer Fun for All: 25 Nonalcoholic Party Drinks, Lovable Liquids: 28 Summer Cocktails and Drinks, Sweet and Savory Homemade Summer Toppings, Berry Tasty Desserts: 14 Summer Fruit and Berry Pies. The summer solstice usually falls on June 21st or 22nd in the northern hemisphere. Litha was originally celebrated as the culmination of the summer but as time evolved so did the seasons. Midsummer or the summer solstice marks the longest day of the year and is one of eight festivals on the Wiccan Wheel of the Year. Women often wear flowers while men wear leaves of the mighty Oak tree. Sharing food, an important part of any celebration, is particularly meaningful during the solstice, as it represents faith in the return of the sun and the harvest. The date is called “Mid­summer” by some Neo-Pagans, though it is actually the beginning of summer in the northern hemisphere. A mystical tradition, honoured by the ancients across continents and cultures, particularly amongst pagans, the summer solstice is remarked as a celebration of the union between the heavens and earth. Before starting your stone circle, set an intention, and place your stones where the sun rays can reach them and keep them charged. Decorate it with lights and symbols of the season. Sirrý in our Stockholm office summed up her love of Sweden’s midsummer festival as follows: “happy people, white dresses, flowers in your hair, dancing around a pole, and so on!” Doesn’t that short description sound just dreamy? Summer solstice traditions from around the world From rock concerts to Stonehenge, people in the northern hemisphere have been celebrating the longest day of the year for centuries. Ancient Latvians integrated pagan rituals into Christianity, what resulted in new traditions like the decoration of firs on Winter Solstice. Rīga is recognised as the birthplace of the first Christmas tree, put up and decorated as early as 1510 by some accounts. From Yule until this day, the sun has been moving ever closer to the earth. The summer-setting holiday has a long (predominantly pagan) history of honoring brightness, abundance, magic, love, and—as usual—fire. The sun is the source of warmth and light around the world. So how can you celebrate the season? In Europe, they celebrated midsummer similarly to the way they celebrated Beltane—with lots of fire. See more ideas about yule, winter solstice, pagan yule. Today, at Litha, the summer solstice, we mark the longest day of the year. They sing traditional folk songs, enjoy beer, nibble at cheese and light fires. Litha is the longest day of the year, so it makes sense to soak up as much sun as you can. Dec 11, 2013 - Explore Rodney Baumer's board "Yule Blessings" on Pinterest. According to Celebrating the Seasons of Life: Betane to Mabon, by Ashleen O'Gaea, a bonfire was central to ancient solstice celebrations, and sometimes a "Summerpole," decorated with flowers and leafy branches, was erected. Midsummer celebration still occurs today. Find this year's date in the multifaith calendar. As we leave Beltane and the delights of spring, we have a new sabbath to look forward to: Litha. Swedish midsummer begins on the third Friday in … 13 Songs for Summer Solstice June 21, 2010 Star Foster Patheos Explore the world's faith through different perspectives on religion and spirituality! The month of June was named for her, a reason June is still a popular month for weddings. Those following Wiccan or Pagan beliefs traditionally leave out offerings of freshly harvested herbs such as lavender, fennel, chamomile, and rose petals for the fairies. In many Pagan traditions today, there’s a lot of emphasis on the magic and power of the moon. Cattle, houses and now even cars have decorations, often birch branches or leaves. The other major pagan holidays are Samhain, Imbolc, Beltane and Lughnasadh. Continue with this tradition by packing a picnic lunch for yourself or your friends. Pagan winter solstice traditions of Yule are decorating the Yule tree, burning the Yule log, exchanging of presents, kissing under the mistletoe, or caroling. Delish editors handpick every product we feature. Samhain Pagan Yule Mabon Happy Winter Solstice Summer Solstice Winter Solstice Quotes Solstice Festival Stonehenge Yule Traditions 12 Simple Prayers for the Winter Solstice Celebrate the winter solstice and the Yule season by reciting pagan prayers in honor of the earth and the deities of your tradition. Midsummer’s eve is considered the second greatest festival of the Germanic holy year, comparable only to the 12 days of Yule. Any food you provide should be Sun-colored, and perhaps round." Of course, you are allowed to save some of those herbs for yourself. Litha (the pagan name for the Summer Solstice) celebrates the longest day of the year. They used ‘Natural Time’ taking their lead from the Solstices and Equinoxes to determine the seasons. This was meant to represent the balance of fire and water during Litha. More Magical Summer Solstice Traditions from Around the World. The winter solstice is celebrated at this time in the northern hemisphere but it is now time to celebrate the summer solstice (Litha) in the southern hemisphere due to the seasonal differences. However, it’s important to remember that the moon isn’t the only heavenly body out there. In 2020, the first day of summer occurs on Saturday, June 20 at 5:43 PM EDT or 21:43 UTC. Some traditional foods involving such round, sun-colored fruits and vegetables include pumpernickel bread, mead, and grilled foods that use an open flame to represent the sun. The summer-setting holiday has a long (predominantly pagan) history of honoring brightness, abundance, magic, love, and—as usual—fire. Here are three simple ways to welcome summer. She was known to bless women with menstruation. You could meditate during this time, cast spells, do some yoga, or simply observe—just allow yourself to enjoy the moment. First, set up a Yule tree near the north side of your altar. You may be able to find more information about this and similar content at piano.io, Great-Tasting Keto Coffee Creamers Actually Exist, 21 Celebrity Alcohol Brands That You'll Love, 8 Things To Know Before Buying Booze At Costco, These 12 Food Trends Are Going To Be Huge In 2020, 14 Keto-Friendly Drinks You Can Order At Starbucks, All of Dunkin' Donuts' Iced Coffee Flavors, Ranked. 2 Minute Read In England, thousands gather to Stonehenge to celebrate the longest day of the year. Winter Solstice - Yule Lore and Traditions The date of this sabbat varies from December 20 to December 23 depending on the year in the Gregorian calendar. This feast usually falls around June 20-21. The sun itself – something we often take for granted, since it’s out there all the time – has been a source of myth, magic and legend for thousands of years. Wiccan Ceremony Midsummer/Summer Solstice – June 20, 2020. The solstice isn't just a weather phenomenon – it's celebrated around the world, and many cultures have their own solstice traditions dating back to ancient times. Swedenand Finland mark the height of summer with big celebrations and weekends soaking up the sun in the countryside, preferably alongside a lake or the sea. In 2014 and 2015 I wrote a series of rituals for those working alone on the Wheel of the Year. Litha is the longest day and the shortest night of the year, when the sun is at the highest point in the sky, ushering in the start of summer. How are you supposed to have a good Litha if your food is under seasoned? The summer solstice is one few times of the year that Stonehenge is open to the public and many people believe watching the sunlight center of the circle is a spiritual experience. The ancient Romans celebrated the summer solstice as a festival for Juno, the goddess of women and childbirth. It is the time of warmth and radiance. Ideally, the best way to mark Litha is by spending all day in the sunshine. Another popular tradition in Sweden is for girls and women place flowers under their pillows, inviting future partners to appear to them in their dreams. In Native American spirituality, the Sun Dance is an important part of ritual. This is in contrast to the Gregorian calendar that has been adopted today. You can set up your own stone circle outside or inside as your alter and using regular stones or crystals—we recommend using moonstone, amethyst, tiger eye, red jasper, citrine, fluorite, and agate as they commonly associated with Litha. Last year the BBC reported that 20,000 people were there to greet the sunrise. Litha is the longest day and the shortest night of the year, when the sun is at the highest point in the sky, ushering in the start of summer. Delish participates in various affiliate marketing programs, which means we may get paid commissions on editorially chosen products purchased through our links to retailer sites. The Pagan Journey. It has been theorized that one of the major uses of Stonehenge was for solstice rituals centering on the cycle of conception, the circle representing the womb. In some pagan traditions, Litha was a battle between the light and the dark. Litha: The Celtic Pagan Traditions of My Ancestors The longest day of the year, the Summer Solstice, is a day that scientists, astronomers, and meteorologists all observe with interest. Flowers are blooming, crops are growing, and life has returned once more. And if some of the Winter Solstice pagan customs and words (like yule, mistletoe, or decorating your home with greenery) sound familiar, it’s because they were later incorporated into what are now considered Christmas traditions. Charitable Pagan winter solstice traditions. Families and communities gather to dance around maypoles, make floral crowns and wreaths, and eat herring and boiled potatoes. One of the hallmarks of any pagan holiday is a feast. But a lot of Pagan activities for the Summer Solstice are designed for large groups. Our New Cookie Tins Are The Sweetest Gift, The 50 Most Iconic Holiday Cookies In America, FYI, This Sam's Club Wine Calendar Is On Sale, Dolly Parton Wears High Heels While Cooking, This content is created and maintained by a third party, and imported onto this page to help users provide their email addresses. See more ideas about Yule, Winter solstice, Pagan. Juno, the goddess of women and childbirth. Midsummer was also around the festival Vestalia, a festival honoring Vesta, the goddess of the hearth, held from June 7 to June 15. We may earn commission from the links on this page. More from Delish: Great Summer Fruit Dishes. "The livelier the dance, the better would be the harvest," according to J.A. 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