Lammas

  • At the height of summer, First day of August
  • The focus is typically on the early harvest or the celebration of the celtic god Lugh. It’s when the first grains are ready to be harvested, when apples and grapes are ripe, and pagans are grateful for the food on their tables. 
  • History: This is the time to harvest things like grain, wheat, oats, and more while apples are ripening, because of this grain is very important for this time and became associated with the cycle of death and rebirth because of the significance it had in a lot of societies.The Sumerian god Tammuz was slain and his lover grieved so heavily, production stopped and he eventually joined with him again in the Underworld, similar to Demeter and Persephone. And in Greek legend Adonis was the grain god and Aphrodite and Persephone fought for him until Zeus sent him to Persephone in the Underworld for 6 months and to Aphrodite for the other 6. In early Ireland it was a bad idea to harvest their grain until Lammas, it meant the previous year’s harvest has run out. But on August 1st the first sheaves of grain are cut by the farmer and their wife makes it into the first loaf by nightfall. In some Wiccan and modern Pagan Lammas is also a day to honor Lugh, the celtic craftsman god. 
  • Folklore/Legends: *In some countries Lammas is a time for warrior games and mock battles *Thor’s wife Sif had golden hair, until Loki cut it off and Thor was going to kill Loki but the dwarves spun new hair and Sif’s hair is associated with the harvest and golden grain *For many cultures, breaking bread is a sign of hospitality and peace *In some parts of Appalachia it was believed that if you miss a row while planting someone in your family will die before the end of the season *Also believed if you see corn kernels on the road you will have a visitor soon, and if you bury them it will be a stranger *Also believed that if the husks on your corn are far above the ear you will have a long winter *Also believed that burning husks, cobs, or kernels will cause a drought 
  • Decorate your altar yellows, oranges, and reds can be used again but to represent the changing fall leaves instead of the sun and browns and greens for the earth and harvested crops. This is a good time to try baking bread. Stalks of wheat, barley, or corn. Symbols of craft for Lugh.
  • Symbols include sickles, scythes, grapes, vines, dried grains (wheat, oats), corn dolls, early fall veggies (pumpkins, squashes), and late summer fruits (apples, plums, peaches. Iron, fall flowers, and straw braids. Root veggies (carrots, onions, etc)
  • Prayer to Honor Grain- Fields of gold, waves of grain, the summer comes to a close. The harvest is ready, ripe for threshing, as the sun fades into autumn. Flour will be milled, bread will be baked, and we shall eat for another winter.
  • Prayer for the Warrior Soul- The warrior soul, fighting in spirit, follows a code of honor and wisdom. Strength is found not in the arms, not in the knife, the gun or the sword, but in the mind and soul. I call upon the warriors of the past, those who would stand up and fight, those who would do what is needed, those who would make sacrifices on behalf of others, those who would die that others may live. I call upon them this night, to give me strength of heart, soul and spirit.
  • Honor Lugh, the Craftsman- Great Lugh! Master of artisans, leader of craftsmen, patron of smiths, I call upon you and honor you this day. You of the many skills and talents, I ask you to shine upon me and bless me with your gifts. Give me strength in skill, make my hands and mind deft, shine light upon my talents. O mighty Lugh, I thank you for your blessings.
  • To Gods of the Harvest- The fields are full, the orchards blooming, and the harvest has arrived. Hail to the gods who watch over the land! Hail to Ceres, goddess of the wheat! Hail Mercury, fleet of foot! Hail Pomona, and fruitful apples! Hail Attis, who dies and is reborn! Hail Demeter, bringing the dark of the year! Hail Bacchus, who fills the goblets with wine! We honor you all, in this time of harvest, and set our tables with your bounty.
  • Some recipes: https://www.learnreligions.com/recipes-for-the-lammas-sabbat-4140665 (Barley Mushroom Soup, Loaf of Lammas Bread, Roasted Garlic Corn, Colcannon, Fresh Basil Pesto, Lammas Fry Bread, Blackberry Cobbler, Butter Fried Chicken)

Lammas/Lughnassadh

Happy Lammas/Lughnassadh to all the southern hempsiphere witches today! (And happy Litha to the northern hemisphere witches). Did you plan anything today? I made wraps from scratch for lunch and plan to make a blackberry crumble for dessert.

I still have my corn dolly from last year’s Lammas altar.

I read somewhere, that if you burn it on Imbolc, and spread the ashes over your plants, they’ll grow better.

I really hope this is true.....my chives have been looking a bit half dead lately. 😕

Sabbat Birthday Superstitions

I thought it might be fun for Imbolc to gather some superstitions for anyone with a birthday on one of the Sabbats. I included dates for both Northern and Southern Hemisphere. These are all from a book called All One Wicca: A Study in the Universal Eclectic Tradition of Wicca by Kaatryn MacMorgan. I’m not necessarily saying that any of this is true or good, I’m just posting it for anyone who is interested. 

Yule (20-22 December or 20-22 June)

A child born on Yule is said to have the power of the Sun God, and the mother is said to be blessed too, of especial sacredness are infants with black hair, who are said to have the powers of the storms, and very pale children born on Yule are said to come from the womb of the Goddess and be great workers of Magick. Some say the gift child is often a changeling, and will die by spring, but bring great prosperity to the family, not my idea of a Blessing.

Imbolc (1-2 February or 1-2 August)

Children born on Imbolc are said to be the "first children of Spring" and will always be one step ahead of everyone else.

Ostara (19-21 March or 19-21 September)

Children born or conceived on Ostara are said to be healthy, strong, imaginative and "green thumbed."

Beltane (30 April -1 May or 30 October - 1 November)

Children, especially girls, born on Beltane are the "children of the Goddess," and children conceived on Beltane are said to have "luck and fortune beyond the world." 

Litha (20 - 22 June or 20 - 22 December)

Children born on the Summer Solstice are supposed to be fiery, smart, strong, temperamental and willful, red haired children born on the Solstice are said to be marked by the Sun King, and will receive special blessings.

Lughnasadh/Lammas (1 - 2 August or 1 - 2 February)

Children born on Lughnasa, like children born on Mabon, are said to be like the crop that is brought in.

Mabon (19 - 21 September or 19 - 21 March)

Children born at Mabon are generally compared to the harvest. If it was good, the child is said the "Grow tall and prosper like the grain," but a poor season usually boded badly for an infant, not because of his/her date of birth but because of the food supply, and the child was said to be lucky to survive past Yule.

Samhain (30 October - 1 November or 30 April - 1 May)

Children born on Samhain are said to be great in power but attracted to "necromancy, graveyards and other ghoulish things," and children conceived on Samhain were said to be the incarnations of unsettled dead, so sex on Samhain is fairly taboo.