Traditional Lúnasa arrives at sunset tonight, as does Imbolg, for those in the Southern Hemisphere!
In the Celtic Wheel of the Year, we celebrate not just one Autumn Festival but three: the First Harvest (aka First Fruit) of Lúnasa, traditionally celebrated on August 1st; the Second Harvest at the Autumn Equinox (aka Fómhar, Mabon and Alban Elfed) on September 22; and the Third Harvest of Samhain, traditionally celebrated on November 1st. In Celtic tradition, the day begins at sunset … so Lúnasa begins this evening!
Lúnasa marks the celebration of the first fruits and grains: wheat, corn, soft fruits, and many other herbs, grains, and vegetables. Perhaps you are already starting to see those changes, those harvests, and signs that autumn is approaching with the now slightly shorter days.
And even though the traditional date for this celebration is August 1st, our ancestors celebrated first harvest ON the first harvest (or the Sunday closest to it). In your locale, the timing may be different, so celebrate when it’s right for you.
The alternative name for this festival, Lammas, originated during the Christian era. The name comes from the Old English hlaf-mæse, meaning “loaf mass”. At Lammas, loaves made from the first harvested grains were taken to the local church at a special mass, for blessing and consecrating by the village priest. I now follow this tradition, using it as a bread protection spell or blessing.
Lúnasa is a time to honour and celebrate the partnership of the Divine Feminine and the Divine Masculine and what that partnership manifests: the abundance and harvest of Mama Earth, the partnership of the Sun and Earth and its people, and the Divine Feminine and Divine Masculine within us all.
In the words of Henry David Thoreau pictured above: “The true harvest of my daily life is somewhat as intangible and indescribable as the tints of morning or evening. It is a little star-dust caught, a segment of the rainbow which I have clutched.”
A Lammas Bread Protection Spell – Blessing
|A Lammas Loaf could be a simple loaf of bread you have baked or purchased, or one you create in the image of a god or goddess. Call on your gods, goddesses and other allies as you break the baked bread into four pieces with your hands. |
As you bury the pieces in the four corners of your land (or home… garden….field) voice your blessing, either one you create yourself or this simple and traditional blessing:
I call on the Spirits of East, South, West and North; the elements of Air, Fire, Water and Earth; and the gods and goddess of the harvest. Protect this place of home and hearth, of plants and animals, of those I love. So mote it be.
This spell / blessing can be offered not just to your physical home but to your spiritual home, your tribe, your community, your country. Blessed be!
Join us to explore the season from Lúnasa through to the Autumn Equinox on September 22nd, with celebrations and soul work to honour the abundance of the first harvest, our connection to the Land, and the shift from the Fire energies of Summer toward the Water energies of Autumn.
We will explore Lúnasa season using the framework of the Celtic cosmology of Land, Sea and Sky — which exists in both the physical and spiritual realms — including traditions, practices, history, lore, deities such as Lugh, animal allies such as Crane (associated with Lugh), rituals, divination, goddesses in other traditions such as Diana aka Artemis and the Lúnasa-Imbolg energetic connection. We will also look at other Sky traditions, such as the Lion’s Gate 8:8 Portal on August 8th.