As the dog days of summer are still upon us, it’s strange to realize that so is the first of the pagan harvest festivals, Lammas…aka Lughnasadgh. Summer will soon be winding down, and August is the transition that will carry us into autumn. As we celebrate the first harvest of wheat, let’s also celebrate the changing of seasons, the transparency of time, and the miracle of continuity.
Herbs: rosemary, jasmine, lilac, violet, calamus
Stones: bronzite, peridot, green sapphire
Scents: frankincense, heliotrope
Colors: yellow, gold, green
Trees: hazel, alder, cedar
Deities: Ganesha, Hathor, Hecate, Nemesis
Astrological Signs: Leo, Virgo
Crafting Your Magic:
The Barley Moon is the time to reap the harvest of magic cast at the beginning of the summer season. It’s a time for the powerful assertive energy of Leo to give way to the calmer vibrations of Virgo. Do magic at this time to cleanse before the winter, cleansing not only your personal space, but intangible aspects as well. Clear out unwanted rubbish, whether it be inertia, conflict, indecisiveness, or some other personal weakness. As the summer winds down and wildlife begins to prepare itself for the dark months to come, this is where the heart of your magic lay as well.
August 1: Lammas
(also known as Lughnasadgh)
Traditions: celebration of first harvest/grain harvest, celebration of the Feast of Bread, weather magic, gathering bilberries as a symbol of abundance, games showcasing athletic ability
Lugh…Lughnasadh celebrates the Irish god, Lugh, a god of strength and athletic prowess. Tradition has it that Lugh’s mother Tailtia passed to the Summerland while working in the fields preparing for the planting season.
This is the first of the harvest festivals, and in the ancient world this was indeed a time of celebration. A successful harvest would mean survival in the harsh winter months to come. In the northern countries this was a celebration of the first harvest of wheat and grain, thus bread is featured in the celebration of Lughnasadh, also known as Lammas. Freshly baked loaves of aromatic bread are the main feature found upon pagan alters for this holiday.
As modern-day Pagans celebrate the festival of Lughnasadh, they will build roaring bonfires, feed each other a mouthful of bread, and with wine they will toast each other…”May you eat the bread of life”.
For more more information on Pagan Holidays, including videos and rituals, visit my website, The Witch’s Corner:
© “The Gray Witch’s Grimoire”
Amythyst Raine 2011