Wow we are upto the third High Day preparation, sadly I was so behind on my blog that I hadn’t done this entry before I went to the High Day on Sunday, I’d only made some notes on it and what it means from a Heathen perspective. So for me here in the Southern Hemisphere we were celebrating Lughnassa/Lughnadsa/Lammas/Loaf-fest/Frayfaxi or whatever other name you want to give it. I have a friend who refers to this as ‘the bread one’, I guess the name isn’t that important so much as that we celebrate it.
This High Day is a harvest festival/celebration, the crops are being harvested and bread and ale are being made for the first time since the stores ran out. Offerings are made in the fields and waterways to appease the Spirits and to the Kindreds too, to celebrate the successful harvest and ward off damaging storms, blight and vermin from damaging the next one.
There are some sources that say in Heathen culture this day was celebrated with horse sports and could be better attributed to Freyr, Thor and Sif. The wights are also important in this celebration.
We make offereings from our crops as thanks, and grains, breads and ales are also a good choice at this time, especially if you make your own. At home I made offerings from my tomatoes which I have just been able to start harvesting from my garden, along with a wreath of herbs (parsley, sage, rosemary, thyme and mint)
This is definitely an agrarian holdiay, supposedly the away season had ended and the Vikings that had gone of raiding were back to help harvest the crops that had been growing in thier absence.
I love this holiday because it means the worst of summer is over and we can look forward to cooling nights, enjoying our crops that we harvest from the garden, cooking with produce we grew ourselves and storms to see in the close of summer. Despite having been baked for months by the harsh Australian sun the garden looks vibrant, many plants are flowering or just finishing and from now on we begin to prune in the garden.
The grove I attend tends to follow a Celtic path, so this time of year they celebrate Lugh and his getting into Tara. They have a tradition of skill sharing, whether it is reading a poem you have read, reciting a favourite part of a myth or tale, singing, dancing, cooking or other skills. I feed and watered my herbs and rhubarb profusely for weeks in preparation of this celebration as the skill I wanted to share was gardening. I took offerings of fresh herbs and rhubarb to the ritual, I had meant to take some seedlings too but forgot.
I think this season is growing in favor with me and now is up there with Yule for me as a favourite seasonal celebration/high day.
Anyway that is it for now, I’ll be writing about how the celebration went soon enough. 🙂