Happy Lughnasadh! The sun’s heat intensifies as it offers its waning powers, the last sunburst before heading into the dark half of the year. Lughnasadh is the first of three harvests in the Autum, the celebration of first fruits from the growing season. As Autumn is ruled by water it is a time for self reflection. I like to ask myself what is ripe in my life? What has come to full maturity and/or conclusion? How can I be nourished by this harvest? What expression does gratitude take in this season?
This year I’m learning a valuable lesson about overplanting. It has been my custom to plant in abundance knowing not everything reaches maturity to harvest. But this year has been different, this year everything took off quickly and tending it burned me out. Having a fruitful life beyond my energy to tend resulted in overwhelm, longing for rest, and the need to reevaluate my priorities. It has challenged me to accept my limitations (ugh!), to alter some of the ways I’ve been working, and to be more mindful of timing. Many of my first fruits have been crowded out and lost as a result. But I remain hopeful as it is early yet in the harvest season. So I’m pruning back and allowing space for the full ripening of only those things that really draw my heart.
My 2017 Lughnasadh ritual:
I picked up my elk drum and began druming to the West, the direction of the waters. I asked the energies of Lughnasadh to reveal themselves. I became aware of the heat and activity of fire, the overwhelm and burn out I have been feeling, and a subtle shifting of energy. How soothing to feel the shift of my efforts and actions give way, surrendering to the water’s currents and tides. Intense radiance and outpouring morphing into peaceful surrender and receiving of gifts. I felt my heart open in receptivity. I could sense more clearly the presence of all the elements in the context of water, and I asked how each expressed themselves in this context.
Turning to the North I felt the material fruits of harvest and thought of my lesson of overplanting. I found myself focusing the energy I was feeling only into what I felt capable of generously tending to maturity. I prayed for alignment of my intentions with the energy of material abundance of the North.
Turning to the East I felt the air currents that reminded me of the waters at my back. How lovely it feels to have a heart opened to the flow of the waters in the West, behind. Feeling the current move through me, coming into fruition, water finds its expression in the East in words and writing. I prayed that the waters continue to inspire my heart’s voice in the telling of my tales.
Turning to the South, I felt the relief of fire’s intensity declining. I imagined smaller fires being ignited from the embers of the dwindling flame of summer. I imagined that each of these smaller fires were hearth fires for the desires and dreams that continue to grow in less conscious states. Guardian fires tending that which grows in the darkness as light wanes.
Finally, returning to the Western waters I offered gratitude for Lunasadh, the waters, and each element’s gifts in it’s liquid state.
I hope the sharing of my Lughnasadh story inspires you to connect with the Wheel of the Year and discover your own earth wisdom.