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Here I feature ways to mark and celebrate The Wheel Of The Year. Read how the most primal and ancient traditions still connect to our 21st Century lives

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June 21st 2022

Here in the Northern Hemisphere, the Summer Solstice of June 21st-also known as the Festival of Litha- is the longest day and shortest night of the year. On this day the Sun is at fullest power! 

From this day onward, the sunlight will wane. Each day after Solstice marks the receding of the Sun- until the time of  rebirth after Winter Solstice on December 21st, which marks the shortest day and the longest night.

When we mark these points on the Wheel of The Year, we’re embracing death and re birth, the eternal cycle of life and our inclusion in this. We also commemorate the legendary ‘battle’ between the Oak and the Holly Kings. The two ‘Kings’ fight to rule over the seasons as the Wheel of the Year turns.

The Oak King reigns until The Summer Solstice when once again the Holly King returns to reign over the darker days to come- until The Winter Solstice when the Oak King will in turn vanquish the Holly King again. This battle symbolises the eternal cycle of life and the duality of Light and Darkness. We acknowledge and embrace that they co exist and battle for our Earth, We also acknowledge that they co exist and do battle within ourselves.

We Are All Part Of The Wheel of The Year

Marking, observing and paying homage to changes between the seasons attunes us to this eternal cycle- and reminds us that we are part of it. I feel that in this particular time, it’s more important than ever that we acknowledge that life is a cycle. Whilst outer events shape our world, the rhythms of nature are eternal...

We simply have to realise The Earth is not some separate entity from us. We don’t just live on The Earth – we live with The Earth.

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Summer Solstice Celebrations

We’ve marked the Summer Solstice with ritual since ancient times and we continue to do so today. Traditionally, the most prominent part of Solstice rituals focus on the exact point of the sunrise on this day. Here in The British Isles, we’ve always been blessed to be able gather at our powerful sacred sites to mark the Summer Solstice and the other festivals of the Wheel of the Year.


Two of the most powerful are the world famous Stonehenge in Wiltshire and Glastonbury Tor in Somerset. Legends have grown up around The Tor- such as it being the resting place of The Holy Grail, it’s associations with King Arthur and as a portal to another dimension. It’s claimed as the home of Gwynn Ap Nudd, who rules the Otherworld of The Fair Folk and who leads their Wild Hunt across the land,,

Even if it’s not possible to be at a sacred site or to gather in groups do try to greet the rising of The Sun outside if you can. Feel the land beneath your feet to ground yourself and connect to The Earth as you raise your arms to salute The Sun!  Feel the energy of The Sun and The Earth connecting with you at the same time Remember, you’re not just observing this. You’re part of this

A Summer Solstice Ritual For You

As this is a festival of Sun and Fire, I like to work with the fire at Litha to ‘let go’ of what’s no longer needed or wanted in my life. I take small pieces of paper and write on them exactly what I’m asking the Universe to help me with. These can be things like life lessons I’ve completed or things that have now run their course in my life. All of these are to be consigned to the flames at dawn in order to let them go...

Some of you may be at places where there are larger communal fires, some of you may be at home and have a fireplace, or you may only have a small bowl of flame or a golden candle. As you cast your pieces of paper into the flame, focus on the power of the Sun and of the transformation of the seasons. Be aware that as the Oak King’s power fades into the darker days toward The Winter Solstice and the growing power of the Holly King- so the things you’ve written down and offered to the flames will also fade from your life ..

As mentioned, this day is the height of the Oak King’s power, Even if you don't leave your home, you may want to decorate it. You can light golden or yellow candles around your home to represent The Sun. Any candles you light before dawn can be extinguished and re lit later if you’re able to go outside for the sunrise, I like to burn the ‘warmer’ essential oils to fragrance my home on this day. Orange, bergamot and benzoin help you to bring the feeling of ‘sun energy’ into your house or you can burn protective oils like rosemary or frankincense. Whatever you decide-embrace and celebrate the warmth and power of The Sun...

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