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Happy Lughnasadh! The Beginning of Harvest Season

The Wheel of the Year keeps turning, and now it is time to honor the end of the summer months and welcome the harvest season! In the Northern Hemisphere, we celebrate on the first of August, in the Southern Hemisphere, on the first of February. It is the time of year when the fields are bursting with grain, and trees are laden with fruit, all ripe for harvesting. 

Lammas celebrates and gives thanks for the work done during the year to yield such a bountiful harvest. It is the first of the three Pagan harvest festivals, where grain, corn, and barley are harvested. For us, it means it's time to reap everything we have sewn in our personal lives and a time for reflection. 

While Lammas celebrates the harvest, Lughnasadh celebrates the god Lugh who is the Sun King and God of Light in the Celtic tradition. It's said that Lugh pours his life's energy into the grain to sustain it for the coming winter, so the people will have enough to eat - a cycle of rebirth. Lughnasadh is a celebration of that sacrifice! Lugh is also the god of craftspeople and people of many skills, such as artists, musicians, smiths, and carpenters. You can honor Lugh by honoring your skills and abilities and giving thanks for them. It's a time to feel good and recognize your capabilities and personal growth. 

Practices & Rituals 

You can celebrate Lammas in many ways, but journaling is a wonderful place to start. Reflect on how you've grown during the past year; what do the fruits of your labor look like? What have you done to get you where you are now? 

Lammas is a celebration of the harvest and of renewal to ensure the harvest continues next year. As we move into the fall months, reflect on what you want to cultivate and the seeds you can begin to sow in the coming time. 

Since this is a time to celebrate the bounty of the Earth, have a gathering of friends and family where you all bring a home-cooked meal and enjoy the last warm days of the year. Bonus points if you bring something harvested from your garden! Not sure what to bring? Corn is a harvest symbol that shows us it was planted, tended, and harvested - so try a new recipe involving corn. Traditionally, people would use the grains for baking the first loaf of bread to show thanks. Fun fact: Lammas derives from an Old English phrase that means Loaf Mass. 

Last but not least, go to a farmers market! Celebrate and support your local farmers who have worked so hard to grow food for everyone over the past year. Thank your local farmers and honor their harvest while enjoying some home-grown fruits and vegetables. Did someone say Potluck? 

Decorating an Altar 

Lammas is also the perfect time to redecorate your altar (or start one!) with colors and symbols that reflect the coming fall months and the end of summer. The colors of Lammas or Lughnasadh are gold, yellow, orange, red, green, and light brown. Use those colors on your altar along with fresh-picked flowers (sunflowers, dandelions, daisies, or honeysuckle), kernels of corn, bread, and sprigs of wheat or barley! Take some time to sit with your altar and give thanks to the symbols of bounty before you. Thank the Earth for all she provides for you, and express your wishes for the coming months. 

We wish you a happy Lughnasadh, and don't forget to honor and celebrate yourself for all the hard work you've accomplished this year!

 


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