The longest day of the year goes by many names. But whether you call June 21st Midsummer, Litha, or even Beltane (as some covens do), today is a fabulous day to celebrate.
For Wiccans, Litha is celebrated as the height of the Sun God’s strength. After Midsummer the god weakens and begins to die (to be reborn again at Yule), but today he is strong and powerful. We may light bonfires or candles to commemorate as sun sets and the shortest night begins. In lieu of bonfires, some people prefer decorate their home in sunflowers to represent the Sun God’s warmth.
Love and fertility are also important themes at Midsummer. Dropping a Chamomile sachet into a bath is a great way to cleanse negativity, while attracting love into your life. Some people also choose to jump over bonfires for purity and luck (which is totally dangerous. If you choose to be ridiculous and jump over a bonfire, don’t try to blame your burnt off eyebrows on me).
Even if you aren’t Pagan, Midsummer is still a magical time. The longest day of the year is a perfect time for Barbecues, hikes, and trips to the beach.
Stay safe out there, no matter how you choose to celebrate!
People tend to think of Friday the 13th as being bad luck, but for many Wiccans, it’s a blessed day.
Wiccans celebrate 13 Esbats (or lunar Sabbaths) every year. When the moon is full, we honor the Goddess by meditating, cleansing ourselves and our homes, and performing rituals. Because of these Esbats, the number 13 represents the Goddess.
Today is a great day to focus on everything the Goddess represents – healing, growth, unconditional love, strength, joy, grace, and intuition.
Because of the power of the full moon, rituals performed tonight will be especially effective. Especially those which focus on uplifting your spirit by embodying the qualities of the Goddess.
“One isn’t necessarily born with courage, but one is born with potential.”
“My mission in life is not merely to survive, but to thrive; and to do so with some passion, some compassion, some humor, and some style.”
“If you find it in your heart to care for somebody else, you will have succeeded.”
Maya Angelou taught us to live with joy and strength. She will be greatly missed.
All quotes found on Goodreads.com and Brainyquote.com and attributed to Maya Angelou.
Post originally constructed for The Brilliance Brainery.
I’m going to do something kind of unusual for this blog – I’m going to talk about a current event and my opinions regarding it.
Buckle up, friends.
On Friday, May 23rd, Elliot Rodger took his (legally-acquired) guns and began his self-titled “Day of Retribution”. This man killed six innocent people and injured a dozen more before finally taking his own life.
Rodger wrote a lengthy manifesto and uploaded several YouTube videos describing his plans. He blamed women for his unhappiness, and spoke extensively about women’s sense of entitlement and the evil of feminism.
This man had mental health issues. Literally. He was under a physician’s care for an undisclosed mental illness at the time of the attack. Though this in no way excuses his actions, Rodger was not well.
Unbelievably, there are actually people who SUPPORT Rodger and his actions.
After the Santa Barbara tragedy, several people (mostly men) took to social media to sympathize with the killer. They shared stories of rejection and “friend-zoning” and agreed that women, in general, deserve to be punished.
Outraged, women responded – and the #YesAllWomen movement began. (You can view #YesAllWomen tweets here.)
Under this hashtag, women (and men) share their stories and offer support to one another. The basic idea is that all women have been mistreated at some point in their lives – whether they were assaulted, threatened, or generally made to fear for their safety.
The goal of this movement is NOT to shame or blame men.
It’s definitely true that not all men are violent, not all men are sexist, and not all men see women as being less than themselves. However, ALL WOMEN have had to deal with the men who are this way.
I mean, hell, SOCIETY is this way.
When I started my freshman year of college, I had to sit though a lengthy campus safety seminar. Over the course of the hour, I was told how to best protect myself from harm.
Never set your drink down. Never go to a party alone. Tell your roommate what time you’ll be home. Never walk alone after dark. Always walk down well-lit roads. Never get into a car with someone you don’t know. Carry your keys in your hand.
The safety seminar was for all of the students in my co-ed dorm. Together, we were all taught how to avoid putting ourselves in harm’s way.
But at no point did anyone tell us not to hurt one another.
No one said “be kind to each other”. No one said “protect each other”.
As a society, we are not expected to care for one another.
Oh, sure, we praise those who do. When selfless heroes put themselves at risk to assist a stranger, we all commend their bravery. We all sit back and tell each other about that courageous soul who protected another from harm.
And we should.
But when someone ignores a crime, we are not appalled. We are not surprised.
What does it say about us as a society that children are taught to yell “fire” instead of “help” if they are assaulted?
Let’s face it – we’re all in this together.
We need to stop teaching our children to fear, and start teaching them to love, to protect.
How many people stay in abusive situations because they think there’s nowhere else to go? How many of these people think that they deserve this treatment? Or that everyone treats their so-called-loved-ones other this way?
How much good could be done just by saying to one another “you are valuable, you deserve to be treated with love”?
I’m not naive – I know that you can’t save everyone.
But I also know that a kind word from someone can turn your whole day around.
“Never, never be afraid to do what’s right, especially if the well-being of a person or animal is at stake. Society’s punishments are small compared to the wounds we inflict on our soul when we look the other way.” – Dr Martin Luther King, Jr.
“Be kind; everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle.” – Plato
“When the moon rides at her peak, then your heart’s desire seek”
May’s full moon is often called the Flower Moon. It the moon of creativity, beauty, and commitment.
All around us, Nature is erupting in colors and sounds as the warm weather begins in earnest. The Flower Moon reminds us that this is a time of renewal for us, as well as for Nature.
Tonight is a great time to charge crystals associated with creativity and determination (like amethyst) by laying them out in the full moon’s light. It’s also a great time to do spell work related to beauty and grace.
However you celebrate, be sure that you get outside to play in the moonlight!
The c&h website is LIVE!
Check it out here: http://www.candlesandherbs.com
And, if you’re able, consider hopping by the Community page to donate to Salem Friends of Felines.
Hopefully for good this time, friends.
Since my last post, I’ve done a lot of ridiculous things, made a lot of tasty foods, crafted tons of jewelry, and played outside frequently.
I’m also about to launch CandlesAndHerbs.com , which I’m totally excited about!
So stay tuned – there will be lots of new awesomeness coming to the blog soon!
Ps: sorry I was so lame there for awhile.