summer solstice / \ midsummer
The time is upon us, summer solstice! This is one of the most magical and powerful days of the year, for stating intentions and preforming rituals.
The word solstice means "sun stops", when the sun pauses for three days, just before it begins to move southward in it's relationship to the earth's orbit. On these three days and nights the daylight hours are the longest, for those above the equator, before they begin to slowly decrease (at the rate of 2 min per day), until the winter solstice. This period of decreasing light is a time to go within, to be with and nurture the mystical sides of our nature. To get to know the shadow side of ourselves, to shine light into our darkness to transform it, to give it power.
We are on the threshold of major endings and beginnings. I don't know if you have felt this, but I sure have. Everything lately feels more intense, especially with the energy of all the eclipses and the supermoon. I feel major energies are shifting in the cosmos, in the planet and within myself. It's time to let go of old habits, ways of thinking, places, people, things that don't service us any more. When we let go we make room for something new to come in. We can learn to do this through the changing seasons, I am always trying to draw from their effortless transition in and out of the seasons. And today marks the beginning of summer, a happy and joyful time of year, reminding me that we always let go of something to make room to receive something better, more magical and beautiful.
These next three months are a season to be spending time with those you feel close to, your kin, your tribe: friends, family, loved ones. It's a time for enjoying the special relationships in your life, and taking part in activities that bring you joy: take a picnic to the beach, invite friends over for dinner, ride your bike, take a road trip. What ever it is, give yourself permission to do it, and enjoy it! In our culture we are in the work work work mindset. And while I love a good, hard days work, I think we often forget the importance of resting. And that for some of us we have to actively make time to do something fun and relax. But this time is so important, it is what creates balance in our lives. Allow yourself to have fun! Now is the time. Let's learn from the seasons, the seeds are planted, but it is not yet time to harvest, enjoy your life, in every way you can. We all have so much to be grateful for and there is so much to be celebrated.
The summer I was 13 I was in Sweden with a friend, staying with a family, for Midsummer. They have such wonderful traditions and celebrations for this day. It is a day that is celebrated all over the world in many different cultures, but I was introduced to it from the Swedes and I think their traditions are so lovely. For the Swedish people it is one of the most important days of the year, and the main celebration is dancing around a maypole. I also remember eating the first strawberries of the season. What I love and remember most is riding our bikes out to a wildflower field and picking daises and making flower crowns. Something I am planning on doing tonight!
Another ritual that I plan on doing is to pick a bouquet of seven or nine different flowers and put it under my pillow while I sleep. If you do this, it is said you will dream of your future spouse. I'll keep you posted!
Happy Summer Solstice and Midsummer!