The Super Pagan Summer Event! Litha is almost here. For those who follow the Wheel of the Year, worship of the Sun began on Beltane (May day) and will end in Lammas (August 1st).
Litha or the Summer Solstice
Astronomically, the summer solstice (June 20, 2020) will happen when the sun reaches its highest point in the sky, marked by the longest day of the year. This is the peak of sunshine, when the power of the sun starts to wane and the days become shorter.
Refresh your memory by watching it again: The Wheel of the Year.
Litha is a celebration of light and abundance. Just like with Beltane, Fire is the ruling element of this Sabbat, so ceremonial fires are traditionally lit to evoke protection, fertility, and prosperity. There are many deities associated with this sabbat (see below) but the most important for Eclectic Wiccans is that of the Sun-God, who reaches the peak of his power on June 21st.
Litha is a great time for transformation because it represents a crucial moment of change in the yearly solar cycle. The Sun has reached its peak sending us its warmth, and now it must decline. We go back into the shadows until it reaches its weakest point, for then to come back stronger upon the winter solstice, in December (Yule Sabbat).
What does “Litha” mean?
“The name Litha (pronounced “LIH-tha”) comes from a very old document written by a monk named Bede called “De temporum ratione” (The Reckoning of Time). The document describes a lot of Anglo-Saxon Pagan ideas, including their names for the months. It is here where we get the term Litha in reference to this time of year. Litha means “gentle” or “navigable,” given because the breeze was very gentle and sailors could sail across a smooth sea.” -Source
What to Do During Litha?
There are many things pagans can do to be more in tune with the rhythm of this season.
Longer days and warm temperatures make summer the ideal time to go outside and enjoy nature. It is a good time to:
• Spend time outdoors (hike, bike, or work on your tan!)
Take off your shoes to feel the earth outside, sand and grass count too!
• Make a circle of stones.
• Hug a tree or read beneath its shade (the Oak tree is worshipped during this time. Read more about the Oak King worship)
• Attend parties, concerts, and social activities outdoors. Picnic anyone?
Traditionally, Litha is a time of purification. Pagans jump over a bonfire or a cauldron to ensure protection, fertility and health. Another custom is to burn herbs as symbols of fertility, calling upon good energies for the remain of the year.
Litha is an auspicious time for divinations Click here to see a Litha Divination with Playing cards
Take the ashes of the bonfire and use them in amulets, gardening, or place them in your shoes for protection.
Here’s a guided video celebration which includes an easy fire-jumping ritual and a Litha spell for solitary Witches to cast at home .
Litha Grimoire Pages
Decorate your Altar
Some Litha ideas to decorate the altar, bedroom, or home are:
• Seasonal coccons, buds and flowers.
• Wreaths and ribbons in red, yellow, orange and green.
• Tree branches (especially oak).
• Lots of candles.
• Food and drink offerings (see below).
• Plants and Herbs: Lavender, Chamomile, Roses, Daisies, Lily, Elder, Fennel, Sunflower, St. John’s Wort, Verbena.
• Incenses: Frankincense, Lemon, Rose, Rosemary, Lavender.
• Oils: Frankincense, Lemon, Rose, Lavender, Sunflower.
• Foods: Prepare an oatmeal cake or bread. Salads and fresh seasonal fruits (such as melon, bananas, pineapples, peaches, pears, tomatoes, strawberries).
• Drinks: Sunflower tea. Fresh juice from seasonal fruits, water, beer, white wine.
• Crystals: Amber, Jade, Tiger’s eye, Jasper, Peridot, Aventurine, Ruby, Emerald.
• Color correspondences: Red, orange, green, yellow, gold.
…and anything that evokes the power of the Sun! Symbols such as the equal-armed cross. ⊕
Deities associated with Litha
The Wiccan Sun-God and the solar Gods and Goddesses of different pantheons are worshipped during this time of the year. Some examples include:
- Áine from Irish mythology.
- Ceridwen from Welsh mythology,
- Ra from Egyptian mythology.
- Sol from Germanic mythology.
- Helios from Greek mythology.
- Inti from Incan mythology.
- Aurora from Roman mythology.
- Mithra from Persian mythology.
and many more.
Reap the fruits of this Summer! If you celebrate outside, pour one for Mother Earth!. Vibrate with the Sun, and activate your magic powers by doing your Witches Homework.
Happy Solstice and extra bright blessings!