Celebrating Lughnasadh. Tips for making Lughnasadh an Enchanting celebration.
Many of us who live in harmony with nature and the seasons choose to celebrate festivals from the Old Ways. August 1st is the first harvest festival of the year, and is still celebrated in many places around the world. Many farmers still acknowledge this festival in some small way, even if they do not remember its roots.
In Pagan communities, this festival is generally called Lughnasadh. Some people prefer to call it by the name it was given when Christianity began to overtake Paganism, Lammas. Whatever your religious/spiritual views, it’s really lovely to acknowledge the changing of the seasons and express gratitude for Mother Earth and all the food she provides for us.
Here are some ways in which you can connect with nature and celebrate this first harvest festival of the year and begin to welcome the coming autumn season.
1. Throw a zero waste picnic. Ask each guest to bring their own plate, cup, bowl, and flatware. Share food made from seasonal, local produce. Ideas: Roasted corn on the cob, baby pumpkins, courgettes, watermelon, blackberries.
2. Light a bonfire and burn bay leaf wishes. Take a moment to express your gratitude for all this delicious food, for summer warmth, to think about all the wonderful things you did over the long summer days.
3. Create a nature table/altar with all of the food you harvested. If you don’t have access to a garden, try to get locally grown produce to put on your altar.
4. Create a nature mandala with lots of orange and yellow flowers to represent the sun.
5. Invite friends round for a midnight celebration to say farewell to summer and welcome the darker days. Place candles in jars and decorate your outdoor space for an added bit of magic. If you are lucky, you might even spot the last fireflies of the season.
6. Take a ritual bath with golden flowers and anoint yourself with essential oils of your choice.
7. Sit in a quiet place and meditate to meet the being that embodies the height of summer and warmth for you (The sun God Lugh, a solar deity, etc).
8. Plan an outing to a U-pick farm to gather any seasonal produce you desire. Then have a party and share this food with your loved ones.
9. Journal to describe what you are ready to release as you say farewell to summer and what you wish to accomplish during the autumn months.
I hope these ideas have sparked a plan for celebrating Lughnasadh! Your celebration can be simple or elaborate. Do what feels right for you. Happy harvest!
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