19 Ways to Celebrate Summer Solstice   Leave a comment

1–Keep a night-long vigil the night before the longest day. The company of friends, a fire, some music or reading, help a lot.

2–Take a bath in fresh herbs, including St. John’s wort [NIH info on St. John’s Wort and depression], long associated with summer — to bring the energy and healing of the season to your body in a physical way,

3–Pour a libation to a flourishing tree in your yard/block/region. (Avoid painful irony: check that the offering you pour won’t injure the living thing you’re celebrating.)

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Irises edging our driveway a few days ago.

4–Plant a tree in an area where you can tend and care for it until it’s well-established.

5–Celebrate with others. Check your local papers, TV, etc. for places and times. Live in a Christian area that discourages Pagan events? Celebrate St. John’s Day with Orthodox or Catholic communities. Or gather with a few friends. The sharing is the main point.

6–Erect a sundial. Wikipedia offers a particularly helpful and thorough article on sundials.

7–Take advantage of solar power. If you’re not able to add solar panels or pre-hot-water heating to your dwelling, consider investing in a local solar co-op that offers rebates, off-sets, etc. to your electric bill.

8–Give thanks for those things in your life growing and flourishing, in their prime, at or nearing their peak, etc.

9–Plant a second crop of quick-maturing vegetables like lettuce, chard, spinach, etc. Pot herbs and vegetables can be surprisingly productive, if you don’t have garden space but you do have a sunny spot to set the pot in. We’re growing peppers in pots because our neighborhood woodchuck ate them last year (!!) — this year we can move them at need.

10–Take advantage of the sun to dry grass and shrub clippings/remove excess nitrogen, then add them to your compost pile (the link lists things good and not good to compost). Don’t have one? Start one! Right next to your current garden, within reach of your garden hose, etc., where it’s easy to tend. No garden space? Start a worm bin for household scraps.

11–Make a flower crown and wear it for a day. If it might feel just a little out of place (or out of character) for the office, wait till the weekend and wear it at home.

12–Write a note thanking someone you’ve fallen out of touch with, or just letting them know you’re thinking of them — “bring light and sun in”. I did this with my high-school French teacher and got a lovely note in return — in French, of course — that detailed her life since retirement and recalled details from our class I’d forgotten.

13–Celebrate shade, too. Sit under a leafy tree and enjoy the coolness and relief if the day’s too warm. Find a pillbug (link to my previous post on armadillidium vulgare) under a board or stone and consider and bless the small lives that help clean and re-balance the land cycles.

14–Follow a link online to the opposite hemisphere, which now is approaching the winter solstice, and see what’s happening there. Or jump six months forward, and watch and listen to the classic Aussie Christmas carol, Six White Boomers (kangaroos!) — Christmas in the middle of the Southern Summer.

15–Fast from something you don’t really need or want anyway. Social media. A particular food. Soda. A habit you can alter — like the route you drive to work every day, the leg you first put into your pants, the side of your body you dry first when you step out of the shower. Anything that helps us notice things we do without noticing can be a place to discover, uncover and recover awareness and energy. You decide (that’s the whole point.)

16–Check out musical offerings in your area and choose where and when to celebrate with family. Make it special, especially if like many you have a limited budget for entertainment. It’s hard to beat a live performance of a musician or group you enjoy. Invite someone who wouldn’t normally go — especially go alone. Here is a link for some of what’s happening this summer in my home state of Vermont.

17–At this time of maximum light and energy, commit to a small change you desire — or simply one you want to try out. As I’ve written elsewhere, one of my strategies with making changes is to make them so small and so easy you almost can’t not do them. Do it for a week and it’s likely to stick. Then try a month.

18–Finish a project — or take another look at one you’ve laid aside — to see whether in this time of energy you have new insight, a different approach, a rekindling of the fires that launched you in the first place to start it. Or clear it away to make room for something new.

19–Make a prayer/dream stick. Include found feathers, twigs from trees whose energy you want to include, a leather thong holding a piece of quartz found on a walk, a bone whistle to blow each time you pick it up — anything to personalize it and incline you toward handling it, renewing the intention, the focus, the request, or the goal you carried in its making.

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Posted 11 June 2018 by adruidway in Druidry, earth spirituality, ritual, solstice

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