Happy Summer Solstice, Alban Heruin or Litha, in the Northern hemisphere

Illustration for summer and winter solstice

Happy Summer Solstice, Alban Heruin or Litha, in the Northern hemisphere. This year the actual Solstice falls on June 21 at 03.22(see http://www.timeanddate.com for the actual time in your region).

A hard cold twelve months for many since last we saw Midsummer, but as the sun reaches it full height it heralds a season of hope.

A time to reach out for your own power or maybe reclaim it at this sunshine festival of Michael, Archangel of the Sun. Make that leap of faith. You cannot fall or fail with Michael with you.

Be not sad, says the I Ching, be as the sun at midday and look forward in anticipation of good times and do not waste precious moments worrying that happiness or love may not last. If a day is grey, we can generate inner sunshine by spreading kindness, humour and optimism to all we meet. Make each day meaningful for yourself also by one small act to make yourself happy. Use the Midsummer impetus to forge the changes you desire so by Midwinter you are more secure and fulfilled and the world may have stopped spinning wildly on its axis.

Personal ways of celebrating the Summer Solstice

Candle illustration
  • Make sun water by leaving out water in a bowl covered with film or mesh from dawn till noon on Solstice morn(or for up to eight hours on a darker day). Add clear quartz or citrine crystals to the water when you put it out.
  • Alternatively set your water on the Solstice Eve to catch the first light on Solstice morn and remove the crystals at noon for extra power.
  • Use the water as an energiser in baths and drinks and to splash on the centre of your hairline to open and clear your Crown chakra energy centre and your aura the invisible empowering and protective force field surrounding you.
  • Make a circle of Solstice water drops around the photo of a relative or friend who is sick or estranged or a beloved ancestor.
  • Light a gold candle and circle small gold items of jewellery round it, if possible, in sunlight for a few hours on Solstice morn to transfer the power of the sun into your life as you wear the jewellery
  • On the Summer Solstice, greet the dawn by lighting a lantern lamp or using a torch, just before sunrise, facing the ascending light. Spend the day in the open air and then say farewell to the Sun as it fades, lighting your lantern, lamp or torch once more to give the sun power even as it descends.
  • Cast golden flowers or herbs into the air from a hill, a handful at a time, making empowerments for courage and achievement to the winds. Where they land and take root represents in the old tradition places of buried treasure. In the modern world it symbolises new or buried talents you can develop to realise your hidden potential.
  • Make a small sun wheel garden, either indoors or out using the flowering herbs of Midsummer vervain and St John’s Wort, Sun herbs such as chamomile, rosemary and saffron and yellow or golden flowers. Arrange them in the form of a wheel and fill in the centre with tiny golden crystals or glass nuggets. You can breathe in the golden light from your living sun wheel whenever you use the Solstice impetus.
  • Light sun oils, frankincense, juniper, rosemary, orange or benzoin or burn them as incense to bring the sun power into your home or workplace.

May your Solstice be blessed and may we all follow the sun to happier times

Happy Midwinter Solstice, or Alban Arthuran in the Southern hemisphere

Happy Midwinter Solstice, or Alban Arthuran in the Southern hemisphere, the rebirth of light and new hope for the world where so much has been shattered and needs recreating and rewriting anew. This year the Solstice falls on June 21 at 03.22 (see http://www.timeanddate.com for the time in your region).

The Grandmother or in some traditions three midwives of winter, helped the Sun Mother with the birthing of her shining son or daughter to emerge on the Solstice dawn after a night of labour. Even so we are reminded that as our new sun is reborn, not easily, we can see the glimmer and shimmer of those longer days and shorter nights just over the horizon. A time to plan how we will make that newborn world a better place for ourselves and others.

This Midwinter is close to the full moon in Capricorn on June 24 Compassionate gentle Gabriel, Archangel of the Moon joins with dynamic Michael Archangel of the Sun whose festival this is, to restore light to a kinder more thoughtful world, our Solstice gift.

Personal Ways of celebrating the Midwinter Solstice.

  • As Solstice Eve draws in, light a purple candle and in it burn threads or herbs to represent all you need to leave behind; at sunset light a gold candle from it, using a taper and then extinguish the purple candle. If you are working with friends or family, they can in turn light their candles from the golden Solstice candle, making wishes for the future.
  • Leave any remaining candles to burn as you plan or talk of the future dreams you can make come true.
  • Decorate a Solstice tree or silver painted branch with baubles, gold and silver ribbons and from it hang tiny gifts to be given to friends and family or left on doorsteps as surprise presents.
  • As darkness falls on Solstice night create a small fire outdoors or in a tiny metal pot and burn dried herbs such as eucalyptus, juniper, rosemary, pine and sage, herbs of the Solstice as an act of faith that life will continue to grow better than before.
  • As you toss on each fragrant handful, name someone who cannot be with you and those causes dear to your heart that will benefit from the renewed power of the sun. If you can’t make a fire, light a huge red candle embedded in soil or sand in a deep fireproof container.
  • Fill a metal bowl with water and either alone or with friends or family in the age-old tradition take it in turns to drip wax from e red wax candles on to the surface of the water. You will gain an image as the liquid wax swirls on the surface and a second more permanent image as the wax sets. The first will indicate an area that will bear fruit over the coming days and the second ways in which you can maximise the energies of the ascending light. Wash out the bowl between readings.

May you have a wonderful Solstice and renewed joy in the year ahead.

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