We come together to celebrate the Sun’s heat, the Sun’s radiance. We come together to honor the Gods and to celebrate life’s bounty and our ability to produce abundance and share. We come together to honor the animals who labor for us – the bees, the goats, the horses; and the animals we learn patience from – the snake, the turtle. On this holiday of Lammas, “loaf-mass” we celebrate the harvesting of the grain. The first sheaf of wheat is ceremonially reaped, threshed, milled and baked into a loaf. The grain dies so that the people might live. Eating this bread, the bread of the Gods, gives us life. Grain has always been associated with Gods who are killed and dismembered and then resurrected from the Underworld. In this way we honor the cyclical nature of life, for the wheat, the corn, the barley are both seed and fruit, promise and fulfillment.
Lammas is the pivot point between fear and hope. There is more to do to bring in a good harvest that will sustain us through the winter. And we need the animals’ labor and the crops to live. We humans cannot thrive without them. There is no culture without Nature. And yet storms come and they can leave devastation in their wake. A drought could kill the crops we depend on. Still, how do you want to see the world? To you look upon the world as full of promise? Do you feel held? Or do you fear what tomorrow may bring? Faith can sustain you when there is lack. But you cannot go it alone. Faith alone won’t work. To truly thrive, live and love in community. Together we are stronger! And I am not just talking about the town you live in or the friends you surround yourself with; I am also talking about the plants and animals you share space with; the Land you live on. To move from fear to hope, trust in the arms of community. For even if one cannot hold you, another can. And you will do the same. Lammas Blessings!
Call in the Lord: Lugh, Guardian of the wild and cultivated crops, with every lightning strike of Summer You go into the Grain infusing it with Your potency. You help us on our journey and You aid us with clear communication that we may be successful in life. We honor Your life and Your sacrifice, for with every death there is new life.
It’s so hot! Yet we light the fires anyway.
we feed the flames of Lugh
corn husk dolls and loaves of grain.
Our dreams and hopes alight
and we wait
on prayers and sweat and dancing sparks
of a good fall harvest yet to come.
lightning unites earth and sky
rain kisses the ground
bonfires are lit
drums beat in tune with the thunder
and people dance
for love and toil and tears
and for the promise that
even in darkness there is light
even in drought there is an oasis
even in famine there is a feast
even in sacrifice there is reward
even in death there is new life.
Copyright 2012, Arianna Alexsandra Collins