Litha is the time of the summer solstice, the time of the longest day & shortest night of the year. Harvests are full & ready. Foods are abundant the harvest of grains, fruits, berries, vegetables & flowers. Time of beaming life when the God is now the father & the Holly King is returning. The Goddess is pregnant with the bounty of the earth she is the Mother Gaia.
The Beltane Altar
- Decorate with the colours present in nature at this time
- Place flowers (we use silk ones to save the promise of new life in the seeds flowers produce)
- Sunflowers are symbolic of the summer season of this time
- Use Gold & Yellow Candles
- Watch the sun rise & sun set.
- Collect items that are on the ground in nature (pine cones, leaves, stones)
- Harvest herbs at high noon (rosemary, white sage, lavender)
- Create smudging bundles with these herbs
- Create a wicker man (from herbs harvested)
- Offer the natural spirits sweets & crystals
- Create a herbal home protection blend with the harvested herbs
- Craft cinnamon stick bundles
- Tie ribbons to trees for Air Spells
- Build a bird house
- Create a Gods Eye
- Have a picnic
- Create a dream pillow & fill with lavender & rosemary
- Renew any protection spell on the home property
- Red Sandalwood
Mix all dried plant parts together and burn small amounts on coal tablets. Be warned that plant material smells very different when burnt and is sometimes not as pleasant as you might expect. If you don't want to burn them place them in a small wooden bowl and use as an altar or table decoration.
Always use true essential oils and essential oil mixes when working with energies as these carry the right vibration for the purpose. Fragrant oils won't work as well & can be very harsh.
To make a simple Litha mix put two drops each of the following in 10ml of carrier oil (Jojoba, grapeseed, olive oil) then shake well.
- Sweet Orange
You Will Need:
- Dark Green Candle
- God & Goddess Statues or Candles to Represent Them
- A Bell
- Cinnamon sticks & pine cones
- Wicker man (made out of lavender & other herbs harvested)
- Cauldron with rain water or distilled water
- Candles to represent the Holly & Oak Kings
The below is only a short version of the festival, it is the way our household celebrates Litha, there are many more formal & longer versions of rituals that can be performed for this festival. Check out the Helpful Links for books that might be helpful.
You Are Ready:
- We usually hold our ritual after the children arrive home from school, during the mid afternoon.
- We prepare a feast (as with all festivals food is an integral part).
- When this is done have everyone gather round the altar or the feast table.
- Make your craft projects.
- Clear the table & set the feast.
- Perform the ritual of casting the circle.
- Have the incense burning in the background.
- Place the candles, wicker man, cauldron of water, God & Goddess representations on the altar/table.
- Ring a bell.
- Light the candles.
- Recite: Welcome to the season of Litha, the time of high summer, the summer solstice. Time of joyous bounty in the promised harvest. The God/Sun is now at his peak in the sky, Goddess/Gaia pregnant we celebrate here the light of tomorrow as the God wanes into the deep night. The time for the Oak King/Youthful Sun to pass to the Holly King/Wise Old Sun as the seasons must change so this must be done.
- Blow out one of the candles (representative of the Oak King)
- Ring the bell once.
- Recite: Through the mysteries of birth, death & rebirth we are reminded of the promise of the seasons, the ever turning circle, the wheel of the seasons, the wheel of life.
- Ask everyone to anoint themselves with the water in the cauldron.
- Recite: Cleanse us with these waters, bring to us your grace, bless us in this sacred space.
- Take a ribbon each & tie it to the wicker man as they think & infuse the ribbon with the energy of something that they have finished with in their lives.
- Close the circle with the closing part of the casting circle ritual.
- Begin the feast