Simple celebration and rituals are a way to bring awareness and gratitude to the seasons of the year. And Lughnasadh/Lammas if a fine celebration of all things bright and abundant!
On August 1st - The Celtic Wheel of the Year falls onto the celebration of Lughnasadh* (known as Lammas** to the Anglo Saxons) It is now high summer and the union of Sun and Earth has produced the First Harvest. Lughnasadh is the celebration of this first, grain harvest, it's a time for gathering in and giving thanks for abundance.
At the Autumn Equinox we'll take in the Second Harvest of Fruit, and Samhain is the third and Final Harvest of Nuts and Berries.
*Named after Lugh, the great Celtic Sun God. August is His sacred month, marked with feasting, fairs, dancing, weddings and games.
**The word 'Lammas' is derived from an Anglo-Saxon 'loaf mass' and is indicative of how central and honoured is the first grain and the first loaf of the harvesting cycle.
Simple Ritual/Celebration Ideas
Just as the ancient Celtic and Anglo Saxons did; celebrate this time by gathering friends, family for feasting and games!
Collect seeds for future harvests. A lovely activity to Involve children. Collect and dry them in the sun, ready for next year's planting. Seeds are such amazing things - each tiny seed contains within it the blueprint for the whole plant it will become.
Make a Corn Dolly. Go for a walk and see what you can find - stalks of wheat, oats, barley, rye often left growing on the edges of fields after harvesting. You can weave your dolly into being, or use coloured ribbons to tie her together. As you do so, give thanks for the gifts of Harvest. At Samhain, return the grain stalks to the earth, they contain the seeds of future harvest...
Lammas bread is traditionally made using the first harvested grain of the season; Ingredients: 3 mugs of strong white flour 500 ml of buttermilk 1 teaspoonful of bicarbonate of soda Sprouted seeds (you can get these in Whole Foods) 1 Lammas ribbon in either gold, orange or yellow Method: Pour the flour into a large bowl and make a small well in the centre. Add the bicarbonate of soda and a pinch of salt, then pour in the buttermilk. Mix with a wooden spoon and add in the sprouted seeds. Add more flour if the mixture is too sloppy before turning out onto a board dusted with flour. Fold the bread mix into a ball, patting it gently so it is slightly flat and cut a pentacle into the top with a knife for decoration. Put on a greased baking tray and bake for 20-25 minutes on medium heat. When ready it will turn a golden brown and sound hollow when tapped on the base. Turn out onto a wire rack and allow to cool before tying with the Lammas ribbon
Have Fun, Give Thanks and Celebrate!