The Wheel of the Year: Summer Solstice

According to Janet and Stewart Farrar, the Sabbats are “seasonal festivals which mark key points in the natural year”.  Since Wiccans believe in being one with nature, these seasonal festivals allow us to celebrate nature in all its glory.  The eight Sabbats are Samhain, Winter Solstice, Imbolg, Spring Equinox, Beltane, Summer Solstice, Lammas and Fall Equinox.

The Summer Solstice is also a festival of fertility.  The Goddess is pregnant.  The God has reached his peak.  This is the festival of fire and balefires are lit throughout the night.

This festival represents the fertility of the Goddess and the land.  It is a time when the crops are going and getting ready to be harvested, just as the Goddess is pregnant and getting ready to birth her child.  It is the festival of fire where fire where evil is driven out and purity reigns.  It is the festival of high summer and the longest day of the year.

The Summer Solstice ritual takes place outdoors if it can.  A balefire is lit the night before and stays lit until sunset of the Summer Solstice.  Festivals, dances and rituals are done all day long in celebration of the Goddess and the harvest.  This is also the Sabbat to celebrate success and high points.

Summer Solstice rituals are done all day long and are completed with the sunset.  Once the ritual is complete, it is time to begin preparing for the harvest.

Correspondences

Date: 22nd June

Other Names: Midsummer, Litha

Meanings: fire, energy, socialization, vitality, relationship magic, magical herbalism

Colors: red, gold, white-blue

Elements: fire

Symbols: tribal fire, light, fruits, flowers

Aromas: cinnamon

The Wheel of the Year: Beltane

According to Janet and Stewart Farrar, the Sabbats are “seasonal festivals which mark key points in the natural year”.  Since Wiccans believe in being one with nature, these seasonal festivals allow us to celebrate nature in all its glory.  The eight Sabbats are Samhain, Winter Solstice, Imbolg, Spring Equinox, Beltane, Summer Solstice, Lammas and Fall Equinox.

Beltane, also known as May Day, is the festival of fertility.  It is the marriage of the Goddess and the God.  This is the traditional time of handfasting.

This festival represents sexuality of the Goddess and the land.  It is the festival where we reap what we have sown.  It starts the second half of the year and the time of harvest.

The Beltane ritual is a ritual where the Goddess and God come together in maturity, love and fertility.  This is also the Sabbat where a young man or woman comes of age, becoming an adult and is allowed to participate in the adult rituals and spells.

Once the ritual is done, couples retire together to become one.  (While this a ritual of the Goddess and God coming together, it doesn’t necessarily make it a heterosexual ritual.  This is a joining of the masculine and feminine qualities of life, which could be heterosexual, homosexual or bisexual.  This is a personal preference.)

Correspondences

Date: 1st May

Other Names: May Day

Meanings: fertility, rebirth, male-female energies, fate, luck, fairy kinship

Colors: green, blue, yellow, pink

Elements: air, fire

Symbols: braided ribbons, maypole

Aromas: frankincense