Open Circle for Lughnasadh on Wednesday!
Yesterday we had a surprise waiting for us at the shop. Two youngsters from Job Corps. No call, no warning, then just showed up. We had a very short class, kinda an intro, and then they headed back out.
The shop was busy. We had one spate where 24 people were in the shop! I did a reading in the middle of the afternoon, but the rest of the time was spent sewing, mostly. We did get one of Marius’ pincushions made and did some block printing very late in the day.
Today I want to get a little more sewing done. I’m supposed to be at the shop by myself so that Tempus can get some errands run. I also hope that I can get the calendar special set up for the year, so we can start that next weekend. It depends a little on how much time I get to work on what.
Today’s Feast is that of Domhnach Chrom Dubh, a facet of the dying/rising harvest god that is associated with sacred wells. The Crooked Dark One, is the flip side of Lugh, the god of light. He was pretty scary from the sound of it. There’s only a little online about him. A few bits are here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/St_Brigid%27s_Well and here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cuim%C3%ADn_of_Kilcummin Picture from https://36.media.tumblr.com/tumblr_lp7jdrVSUI1qepg91o1_r1_400.jpg
Today’s Plant is Miner’s Lettuce, (aka winter purslane, or Indian lettuce). It’s a plant native to our area, growing and blooming in our soggy spring and drying out and dying back in the summer. I’ve seen in re-bloom in the fall. It’s a leaf vegetable that can be eaten raw or cooked like spinach. It’s really choice in salads and very high in vitamin C. It got the name because the Gold Rush miners ate it to prevent scurvy, since they really weren’t eating right. Like any lettuce or most of the salad greens it’s Feminine and Water, but as any high Vitamin C food, its planet correspondence is the Sun. – Sprinkling it inside the home brings happiness, so it’s good in floor washes or new home blessings. Carry it with you for luck and to protect from violence. Put it into sleep pillows or add to a dream catcher to keep away nightmares. I’ve actually slipped it between the mattress and sheets for this purpose. More here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Miner%27s_lettuceMore on the genus here:http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Claytonia
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Love & Light,
Waxing Moon Magick – The waxing moon is for constructive magick, such as love, wealth, success, courage, friendship, luck or healthy, protection, divination. Any working that needs extra power, such as help finding a new job or healings for serious conditions, can be done now. Also, love, knowledge, legal undertakings, money and dreams. Phase ends at the Tide Change on 7/31 at 3:43am. Waxing Gibbous Moon – From seven to fourteen days after the new moon. For spells that need concentrated work over a ¼ moon cycle this is the best time for constructive workings. Aim to do the last working on the day of the Full moon, before the turn. Keywords for the Gibbous phase are: analyze, prepare, trust. It is the time in a cycle to process the results of the actions taken during the First Quarter. During this phase you are gathering information. Give up making judgments; it will only lead to worry. Your knowledge is incomplete. Laugh. Analyze and filter. LOOK WITHIN. God/dess aspect: Maiden/Youth, but in the uncommitted phase, the Warriors – Associated God/desses: Dion, Dionysius, Venus, Thor. Phase ends at the Full on 7/29 at 3:43pm.
Altair shines high in the southeast after nightfall. Just above it, by a finger-width at arm’s length, is little orange Tarazed. A bit more than a fist-width to Altair’s left, look for Delphinus, the Dolphin, leaping leftward.
Mars is deep in the glow of dawn.
Goddess Month of Kerea runs from 7/11 – 8/8
Celtic Tree Month of Tinne/Holly, Jul 8 – Aug 4
Runic half-month of Uruz/ Ur, 7/14-28 According to Pennick Ur represents primal strength, a time of collective action. A good time for beginnings! Pennick, Nigel, The Pagan Book of Days, Destiny Books, Rochester, Vermont, USA, 1992 Runic half-month of Thurisaz/ Thorn/Thunor, 7/29-8/12 – Northern Tradition honors the god known to the Anglo-Saxons as Thunor and to the Norse as Thor. The time of Thorn is one of ascendant powers and orderliness. This day also honors the sainted Norwegian king, Olaf, slain around Lammas Day. Its traditional calendar symbol is an axe.
©2015 M. Bartlett, Some parts separately copyright.
Celtic Tree Month of Tinne/Holly, Jul 8 – Aug 4, Tinne (CHIN-yuh), holly – The holly (Ilex aquifolium L.) is a shrub growing to 10 m (35 feet) in open woodlands and along clearings in forests. Hollies are evergreen, and stand out in winter among the bare branches of the deciduous forest trees that surround them. Hollies form red berries before Samhain which last until the birds finish eating them, often after Imbolc. The typical “holly leaf” is found on smaller plants, but toward the tops of taller plants the leaves have fewer spiny teeth. Hollies are members of the Holly family (Aquifoliaceae). The common holly is often cultivated in North America, as are hybrids between it and Asiatic holly species.
Graves (1966) and others are of the opinion that the original tinne was not the holly, but rather the holm oak, or holly oak (Quercus ilex L.). This is an evergreen oak of southern Europe that grows as a shrub, or as a tree to 25 m (80 feet). Like the holly, the holm oak has spiny-edged leaves on young growth. It does not have red berries, but it does have red leaf “galls” caused by the kermes scale insect; these are the source of natural scarlet dye. Holm oaks are occasionally cultivated in North America.
Tinne – Holly Ogam letter correspondences
Color: Dark Grey
Meaning: Energy and guidance for problems to come
to study this month – Ioho – Yew Ogam letter correspondences
Color: Dark Green
Letter: I, J, Y
Meaning: Complete change in life-direction or attitude.
Tides for Alsea Bay
Day High Tide Height Sunrise Moon Time % Moon
~ /Low Time Feet Sunset Visible
M 27 Low 4:20 AM 0.3 5:58 AM Set 2:26 AM 75
~ 27 High 10:42 AM 5.0 8:47 PM Rise 5:27 PM
~ 27 Low 3:50 PM 2.8
~ 27 High 9:56 PM 7.4
Affirmation/Thought for the Day – I manifest from abundance. With the consciousness of abundance, I give. With the consciousness of abundance, I receive.
~ Delays breed dangers. – John Lily
Some griefs are medicinable. – William Shakespeare, Cymbeline, 3.2
It’s not who you are that holds you back, it’s who you think you’re not. – author unknown
~ Any idea, plan, or purpose may be placed in the mind through repetition of thought. – Napoleon Hill
To see a world in a grain of sand,
And a heaven in a wild flower,
Hold infinity in the palm of your hand,
And eternity in an hour. William Blake from Auguries of Innocence
Seasons of the Witch – Ancient Holidays – And some not so ancient too!
The Celts celebrate this festival from sunset August 1 until sunset August 2 and call it Lughnasad after the God Lugh. It is the wake of Lugh, the Sun-King, whose light begins to dwindle after the summer solstice. The Saxon holiday of Lammas celebrates the harvesting of the grain. The first sheaf of wheat is ceremonially reaped, threshed, milled and baked into a loaf. The grain dies so that the people might live. Eating this bread, the bread of the Gods, gives us life. If all this sounds vaguely Christian, it is. In the sacrament of Communion, bread is blessed, becomes the body of God and is eaten to nourish the faithful. This Christian Mystery echoes the pagan Mystery of the Grain God.
Grain has always been associated with Gods who are killed and dismembered and then resurrected from the Underworld by the Goddess-Gods like Tammuz, Osiris and Adonis. The story of Demeter and Persephone is a story about the cycle of death and rebirth associated with grain. Demeter, the fertility Goddess, will not allow anything to grow until she finds her daughter who has been carried off to the Underworld. The Eleusinian Mysteries, celebrated around the Autumn Equinox, culminated in the revelation of a single ear of corn, a symbol to the initiate of the cyclical nature of life, for the corn is both seed and fruit, promise and fulfillment.
You can adapt the themes of Lughnasad and Lammas to create your own ceremony for honoring the passing of the light and the reaping of the grain.
Honoring the Grain God or Goddess
Bake a loaf of bread on Lammas. If you’ve never made bread before, this is a good time to start. Honor the source of the flour as you work with it: remember it was once a plant growing on the mother Earth. If you have a garden, add something you’ve harvested–herbs or onion or corn–to your bread. If you don’t feel up to making wheat bread, make corn bread. Or gingerbread people. Or popcorn. What’s most important is intention. All that is necessary to enter sacred time is an awareness of the meaning of your actions.
Shape the dough in the figure of a man or a woman and give your grain-person a name. If he’s a man, you could call him Lugh, the Sun-King, or John Barleycorn, or the Pillsbury Dough Boy, or Adonis or Osiris or Tammuz. Pauline Campanelli in The Wheel of the Year suggests names for female figures: She of the Corn, She of the Threshing Floor, She of the Seed, She of the Great Loaf (these come from the Cyclades where they are the names of fertility figures), Freya (the Anglo-Saxon and Norse fertility Goddess who is, also called the Lady and the Giver of the Loaf), the Bride (Celtic) and Ziva or Siva (the Grain Goddess of, the Ukraine, Hungary, Yugoslavia and Czechoslovakia).
Like all holidays, Lammas calls for a feast. When your dough figure is baked and ready to eat, tear him or her apart with your fingers. You might want to start the feast with the Lord’s Prayer, emphasizing the words “Give us this day our daily bread.” The next part of the ceremony is best done with others. Feed each other hunks of bread (or gingerbread people or popcorn), putting the food in the other person’s mouth with words like “May you never go hungry,” “May you always be nourished,” “Eat of the bread of life” or “May you live forever.” Offer each other drinks of water or wine with similar words. As if you were at a wake, make toasts to the passing summer, recalling the best moments of the year so far.
Another way to honor the Grain Goddess is to make a corn doll. This is a fun project to do with kids. Take dried-out corn husks and tie them together in the shape of a woman. She’s your visual representation of the harvest. As you work on her, think about what you harvested this year. Give your corn dolly a name, perhaps one of the names of the Grain Goddess or one that symbolizes your personal harvest. Dress her in a skirt, apron and bonnet and give her a special place in your house. She is all yours till the spring when you will plant her with the new corn, returning to the Earth that which She has given to you.
Food for Thought
Lammas is a festival of regrets and farewells, of harvest and preserves. Reflect on these topics alone in the privacy of your journal or share them with others around a fire. Lughnasad is one of the great Celtic fire-festivals, so if at all possible, have your feast around a bonfire. While you’re sitting around the fire, you might want to tell stories. Look up the myths of any of the grain Gods and Goddesses mentioned above and try re-telling them in your own words.
Regrets: Think of the things you meant to do this summer or this year that are not coming to fruition. You can project your regrets onto natural objects like pine cones and throw them into the fire, releasing them. Or you can write them on dried corn husks (as suggested by Nancy Brady Cunningham in Feeding the Spirit) or on a piece of paper and burn them.
Farewells: What is passing from your life? What is over? Say good-bye to it. As with regrets, you can find visual symbols and throw them into the fire, the lake or the ocean. You can also bury them in the ground, perhaps in the form of bulbs which will manifest in a new form in spring.
Harvest: What have you harvested this year? What seeds have your planted that are sprouting? Find a visual way to represent these, perhaps creating a decoration in your house or altar which represents the harvest to you. Or you could make a corn dolly or learn to weave wheat. Look for classes in your area which can teach you how to weave wheat into wall pieces, which were made by early grain farmers as a resting place for the harvest spirits.
Preserves: This is also a good time for making preserves, either literally or symbolically. As you turn the summer’s fruit into jams, jellies and chutneys for winter, think about the fruits that you have gathered this year and how you can hold onto them. How can you keep them sweet in the store of your memory?
School of the Seasons – http://www.schooloftheseasons.com/lammas.html
Feast of Old Greek Deities Aphrodite and Eros–Day to honor love and passion – 8/1 eve to 8/2 eve
For More Lammas Info – Click Here – http://www.wilsonsalmanac.com/lammas.html
Remember the ancient ways and keep them sacred