(This is written for the Northern Hemisphere in 2004. The date of August 7th is wrong for 2022 the Southern or Northern Hemisphere)
Lammas is the first of the harvest festivals, a celebration of ripening grains and grapes. If you celebrate traditionally on the second, the planetary energies offer a for great creative energy, drama, and joy. If you celebrate on the astrologically on August 7 at 15 degrees of Leo, the Moon will aid a ceremony with great magic and mystery.
The Sun is wanning, but still holding sway in the sky. A day of circle dances and foot races will honor the Sun; be certain the music encourages exuberant joy. If you planted wheat in a pot or plot, this is the day to ritually harvest it. Use some to make a Brigid’s cross; save a few stalks to return to the earth as compost next spring and lend continuity from harvest to sowing to harvest.
If corn is your grain of choice, bring ripe ears to the altar and use the husks to make corn dollies for use at Imbolc. Indian corn can be dried, ground, and used in corn bread. Make a fiery incense with dragon’s blood and hot herbs like ginger or galangal. Do a ritual at a sacred spot — a well or tree or sacred hill. Use the colors of green and gold and orange for your altar, and encourage everyone to wear them. The harvest has just begun.
Copyright By K. D. Spitzer in Llewellyn’s Witches’ Datebook 2004 Page 89
Daylight hours are gradually lengthening, and the Earth is beginning to stir. Although she is still in the middle of her winter’s rest, our planet subtly begins to plan. It’s appropriate that this period is represented by Aquarius, an air sign, since all change begins first in the mind. Every new thought or idea is full of raw potential as the Earth is now,nailing for the touch of fire to ignite her new growth period. Uranus is the ruler of Aquarius, and the planet best known for its jurisdiction over the future. This electric energy only looks forward, never back. It is during Imbolc, in fact, as the Sun is passing through Aquarius, that many ideas are born. As we prepare for the upcoming Equinox, then, it’s important to be sure that we’re looking ahead, as Uranus does, with all the electric enthusiasm and genius of Aquarius. Honor the potential of the coming spring by uncovering your gift of prophecy. Whether you use a crystal ball, a dream journal, or another type of predictive tool, prepare for the Equinox in your heart, by understanding how much is possible now.
©️ By Kim Rogers-Gallagher Llewellyn’s Witches’ Datebook 2000 Page 95
At Lammas, the Sun is at the very peak of Leo, the sign this planet loves above all others. Our star’s warmth is at its most powerful now in the Northern Hemisphere, as it appears directly overhead. At this time, life too, ia at its peak—as are the crops. The ancients celebrated this festival by giving thanks for their first harvest, most especially the grain harvest, even as they accepted the beginning of the God’s descent into the underworld. The myth of the asteroid-Goddess Ceres (Demeter), giver of the grain, also relates to this season. It was now when she would bid her daughter Farwell, since Persephone was obligated to return to the Underworld to rejoin Hades (Pluto). So bereaved was Ceres to see her daughter leave her, she refused to all the Earth to produce grain until her return. At this time,nothing, modern practitioners should be remind of both astrological principles: the fullness of life the Sun brings, and the necessity for rest, as signified by the coming fall.
©️ By Kim Rogers-Gallagher Llewellyn’s Witches’ Datebook 2000 Page 95
I had a busy second half of 2020 and most of 2021 with moving and huge changes in my personal life. I also want to be totally honest here part of the reason I was not holding gatherings and open chats is I was allowing my anxiety disorder as a wall to hide behind and an excuse not to do what I should be doing not only for those who study witchcraft with me but all of you as well. The only huge thing happening this year is my regular wedding on May 13th and then our Handfasting on November 28th. Giving me more time to devote to all the fingers of WOTC that I run completely on my own. Any donations to help with cost of keeping WOTC going would be greatly appreciated as the hours I put in per week is equivalent to a full-time job. Even reading more posts per day would help raise the small amount, around $100.00 USD, I receive from PayPal for the ads that appear on all the different posts. As you can tell I am doing this as a labor of love and wanting to bust the stereotypes history and mass media has given us all to endure. To help people realize that a witch could be their likeable, next-door neighbor, a kind and giving person. Instead of thinking we all do animal scarifies, curse and/or hex people, and as you know the stereotype goes on and on and on.
Besides all the daily posts which take me about five hours every day I will be publishing a mini magazine every month and get back to having either a Sabbath (on whatever day it falls on and includes a ritual for the southern and northern hemispheres) or Esbats (on a Saturday or Sunday whenever the date falls within 3 days of the date of the full or new Moon) open (coven) gatherings monthly, and also a monthly open chat on the 3rd Saturday of every month starting Saturday, February 19,2022 . If anyone knows of a reasonably priced chatroom website that I can set up a private chat room in, please let me know as soon as possible. I plan on us being able to gather on Wednesday, February 1, 2022, for the Imbolc/Lammas Sabbat. Time to be announced as soon as I figure out a good time for our sisters and brothers from Australia and Europe to be able to join us. I get confused sometimes with the 17 hours plus international date line for Australia time and 7 hours difference for Europe. I tell my fiancée it is no wonder I cannot keep straight what day it is with working with 6 different time zones and the international dateline every day…lol. Writing a new ritual for every Sabbat or Esbat takes me between 2 to 3 hours as I test how easy or hard it is to do with only having a typed page of instructions. What would think of me videotaping the ritual in advance and posting it a day or two before the gathering, so you have something else to follow for it? I should let you know I will be recording it via my cellphone because I have no other way to do it, so it will be a learning curve for me to do this. Adding even more time to my work schedule but that is fine if at least 10 people think it would help them to follow the ritual on the night of the gathering.
I will be restarting WOTC School of Witchcraft with courses starting on February 3rd and August 3rd. I will start the novice and adept courses twice a year and every lesson will have a specific due date. Of course, if there is an illness in your family or another emergency arises, I will work with you on extending your current lessons due date by 7 days. Always remember your health, well-being and family are more important than sticking to a due date for a lesson. Besides getting lessons in on time the other two most important things to do are to check in with me weekly, a simple “Hi” is all that you would need to email me, and to read 1 post 4 days a week including leaving a comment on it, so I know you read the post.
The novice course includes 18 lessons, all gatherings, and 1 on 1 help from me if needed. The novice course is to be completed within 1 year and 1 day which starts when you receive a reply from your first lesson. The cost for this course is $30.00 USD. The next novice course will begin on February 3, 2022.
The adept/intermediate course includes for the first year 10 written lessons, all gatherings, you will be responsible for writing and leading one Esbats and one Sabbaths gathering. You will also be the moderator for 4 open chats and 1 one 1 help from me. Your second year is a time we will explore the pagan/witchcraft/spiritual path that you want to walk. This course is 2 years and 1 day long and starts when your novice course time is through. I do accept students entering at this level of study after the person fills out a questionnaire so I can gage your level of knowledge. The cost for this course is $50.00 USD.
For more information about either course please email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Please put “School” in the subject line. I will be posting an outline for the lessons in each course by the evening of Sunday, January 12th.
To receive a copy of the new mini-magazine, Life in The Craft, go to the Daily Posts and look for ‘Free ‘Life in The Craft’ Monthly Mini-Magazine Coming Straight to Your Emails Inbox’, for all the information about it. I am figuring out this is going to add at least 5 more hours a week to my work for WOTC. I want to give a huge thank Kari for volunteering to edit Life in The Craft. She is a professional editor so I know the things I write for the mini magazine will come to you easier to read without all my oops in it.
Any questions or comments about anything in this post please put it in the Comments section below because someone else might be wondering about the same thing you are. Thank you!
Until we meet again soon blessed be dear Sisters, brothers, and guests.
Imbolc is an important day of purification and initiation; on the Sun’s day, February 2, the energies are very airy. This Sabbat is a good day for coven work, with an emotionally detached masculine Moon and Sun on the Sun’s day.
Dress yourself and your altar in white, while serving white beverages or any dairy food to honor the calving season. Spread the top of a one-pound round Camembert or Bire cheese with raspberry preserves. Cut a circle of puff pastry large enough to cover the cheese, wrap it, tucking the ends of the pastry under. Use scraps to decorate the top with goddess symbols. Brush with beaten egg yolk. Bake at 425 degrees until golden, and serve hot and melting on crackers. During this ritual, bless and dedicate all candles you will need for other ritual work throughout the year. A good way to start the ceremony is to light candles in the darkened room with chanting to encourage the lengthening days.
©️ By K. D. Spitzer Llewellyn’s Witches’ Datebook 2002 Page 41
IMPORTANT NOTE for the Southern Hemisphere Imbolc falls on August 1st.
Lammas is the first of the harvest festivals and this year despite the fiery Sun, it has a strong, sensual feel of cardinal earth. Mars lends a masculine energy to the Sun this week to help with the organizing for this bread festival. Round cornbread as a solar disk is an apt and easy choice for the altar, but if you plan several days ahead, you can sprout a small amount (1/4 cup) of wheat or barely for kitchen witchery. Add this to your other grains to your own bread from scratch; or buy frozen bread dough, thaw, pat into a rectangle, and sprinkle the sprouted grains. Roll up your dough like a jelly roll and place in a greased bread pan into which you have sprinkled Irish oats. You can use a sharp knife to crave goddess symbols into the loaf before baking.
©️ By K. D. Spitzer Llewellyn’s Witches’ Datebook 2002 Page 93
The Lughnasadh and Lammas Pagan holidays celebrates the Wheel of the Year and the arrival of the late summer season!
The days are sticky hot and you spend your time finding ways to cool down. Gardens and farmlands are ripe with veggies in shades of dark green and yellow. This is the beginning of the first harvest and primarily involves grain and corn. Although the sun is strong and hot, you’ll notice the days are beginning to shorten.
This season is lush and abundant, but Nature is already beginning to sense the coming of colder Winter days. So begins the days of preparation: gathering seeds to plant next Spring, harvesting herbs, canning jams and jellies, and baking bread to store for those cold days ahead.
It’s important to also understand that there is so much more to Lughnasadh and not just the literal interpretation of harvesting because you may not be farming your own fields.
This is a time for gratitude, personal growth, and renewal. The energy and intentions of Lughnasadh are still prevalent in the day to day lives of those who live a nature spirituality based life.
Many Pagans, Witches, and those interested in Nature Spirituality celebrate the seasonal cycles. Sometimes referred to as the Wheel of the Year, and consisting of eight celebrations. Four of these festivals (Imbolc, Beltane, Lughnasadh, and Samhain) are rooted in Celtic history and origins. The other four (Spring Equinox, Summer Solstice, Autumn Equinox, and Winter Solstice) represent the sun’s location. I created a complete guide to each season, including history, traditions, symbols, correspondences, ritual ideas, and how you can celebrate.
Table of Contents
- When is Lughnasadh or Lammas?
- What is the Difference Between Pagan Holidays Lammas and Lughnasadh?
- Lammas Meaning, Traditions, and Why We Celebrate Pagan Holidays
- How To Celebrate Lammas and Lughnasadh
- Simple Ritual Ideas For Lughnasadh and Lammas Pagan Holidays
- Lughnasadh and Lammas Correspondences
- Lughnasadh and Lammas Pagan Holidays Journal Prompt Ideas
This song is short but sweet.
Beltane honours Life. It represents the peak of Spring and the beginning of Summer. Earth energies are at their strongest and most active. All of life is bursting with potent fertility and at this point in the Wheel of the Year, the potential becomes conception. On May Eve the sexuality of life and the earth is at its peak. Abundant fertility, on all levels, is the central theme. The Maiden goddess has reached her fullness. She is the manifestation of growth and renewal, Flora, the Goddess of Spring, the May Queen, the May Bride. The Young Oak King, as Jack-In-The-Green, as the Green Man, falls in love with her and wins her hand. The union is consummated and the May Queen becomes pregnant. Together the May Queen and the May King are symbols of the Sacred Marriage (or Heiros Gamos), the union of Earth and Sky, and this union has merrily been re-enacted by humans throughout the centuries. For this is the night of the Greenwood Marriage. It is about sexuality and sensuality, passion, vitality and joy. And about conception. A brilliant moment in the Wheel of the Year to bring ideas, hopes and dreams into action. And have some fun…..
Traditions of Beltane
Beltane is a Fire Festival. The word ‘Beltane’ originates from the Celtic God ‘Bel’, meaning ‘the bright one’ and the Gaelic word ‘teine’ meaning fire. Together they make ‘Bright Fire’, or ‘Goodly Fire’ and traditionally bonfires were lit to honour the Sun and encourage the support of Bel and the Sun’s light to nurture the emerging future harvest and protect the community. Bel had to be won over through human effort. Traditionally all fires in the community were put out and a special fire was kindled for Beltane. “This was the Tein-eigen, the need fire. People jumped the fire to purify, cleanse and to bring fertility. Couples jumped the fire together to pledge themselves to each other. Cattle and other animals were driven through the smoke as a protection from disease and to bring fertility. At the end of the evening, the villagers would take some of the Teineigen to start their fires anew.” (From Sacred Celebrations by Glennie Kindred) Green Man – Beltane