Litha: First Thoughts

First thoughts on Litha, a celebration of the Summer Solstice

Litha is usually celebrated between 20th and 23rd of June.  It is the Midsummer festival, celebrating the longest day of the year.  The specific solar event of the Summer Solstice happens in a moment of time and this year 2020, it falls on Saturday 20th June at 22:43 BST.  That is the precise time that the hours of daylight and night-time are equal.  After that we in the northern hemisphere begin a slow descent into shorter days and longer nights, although the hottest part of the year is still to come. 

Diagram showing the Summer and Winter Solstices and Spring and Autumn Equinoxes
Diagram showing the Solstices and Equinoxes

The Solstice is a pivotal time of stillness and balance, when day and night, sun and moon, the physical and spiritual blend together and is one of three ‘Spirit Nights’ (with Beltane, Samhain). The boundaries are blurred; otherworld beings, spirits and the fae visit; leave offerings of milk and honey to prevent mischief!

Agriculturally, crops are in full growth. They are reaching the pinnacles of maturity and coming closer to the harvest time. Most wild herbs are fully mature by Midsummer and this is the traditional time for gathering magickal and medicinal plants to dry and store for winter use. In Wales, Midsummer is called Gathering Day in honour of this practice.

St John's Wort, traditional harvested at Midsummer
St John’s Wort, traditional harvested at Midsummer

How can you have better balance in your life?  Do you have clear or blurred boundaries?  How are you enjoying the peak of your powers?  What have you grown to maturity?

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