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Evolutionary Spirituality

Lammas – (the Summer Thermstice, August 1)

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Lammas is the celebration of the early harvest, when the summer’s heat is still here, yet the days have shortened to what they were on Beltane. This holiday corresponds to mature adulthood, when you are still in the summer of your life, yet can begin to see the fruits of your labors as your children grow to be teens. This mirrors the earth, which has the beginnings of harvest, and the full summer heat at Lammas. Traditional colors are deep yellow, orange, tan and light brown.


In Deep Time history, Lammas can represent dinosaurs – extreme of summer heat (thermstice) fits with the extreme size, power and might of the dinosaurs. It also fits with the idea that this too, must pass, as the early harvest and waning daylight foreshadow the waning year. Time = from 200 million to 100 million years ago)


We celebrate Lammas by some kind of early harvesting, such as visiting a pick-your-own blueberry farm, wild raspberry picking, or such. To see the abundance of the earth, we’ll sometime spend time wandering (or even trying to run) in a mature cornfield. It’s one thing to say “Oh, yeah, the earth is producing a lot of growth”, but quite another indeed to be surrounded by it, blinding your sight and slowing your movement – that really shows the power of this Sabbat. We usually bake bread, perhaps in a woven Celtic knot, enjoying some of it during our ritual. The ritual is held during the afternoon’s heat, not at night. Most recently, in my family we've been using the name "Lunasa" for this Sabbat - "Lammas" is the old name for the "Mass" held in commemoration of the first grain or "loaf" - resulting in the name "Loaf-Mass", which became "Lammas", like Christmas or Candlemas. We've been using the simplified spelling of Lunasa (instead of Lughnasadh)to make it easier to explain to family and friends.

Some traditions that I’ve heard but haven’t done in our family include rolling a Catherine’s wheel (a large wheel enveloped by fire) downhill, or making kern-babies (cornstalk dolls).

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