· By Payge Bellini
Celebrating Litha: The Magic of the Summer Solstice
History and Significance of Litha
Historically, Litha has been observed across a variety of cultures, from the ancient Celts and Romans to the Native American tribes. For Wiccans and witches, this sabbat represents the height of the Sun God's power, which in turn sparks the crop growth needed for survival. However, there's also an undertone of melancholy as we acknowledge the imminent waning of the sun's strength, with days gradually shortening until the Winter Solstice.
Traditional Litha Activities
Observances vary, but common activities often include bonfires, feasting, and spending time outdoors to honor the sun's radiant glory. You may wish to rise with the dawn and bask in the longest daylight of the year, lighting a candle to symbolize the sun's journey. Many witches also cast spells for growth and success, drawing on the heightened solar energy.
In witchcraft, Litha is strongly associated with fire and the sun, and its correspondences often echo these connections.
- Colors: Gold, yellow, red, and orange, representing the sun and fire
- Herbs: St. John’s Wort, lavender, oak, and rose
- Crystals: Sunstone, tiger's eye, and citrine
- Symbols: The sun, bonfires, and the mighty oak, which is symbolic of the god at full strength
A Simple Litha Ritual
Here's a simple spell for personal growth and renewal that you can perform on Litha:
1. Light a yellow or gold candle to represent the sun.
2. Hold a sunstone, and as you bask in the sunlight, visualize its rays infusing the crystal with energy.
3. Meditate on your goals for personal growth, picturing the sun's energy nurturing these seeds of intent.
4. Leave the sunstone in a sunny spot throughout the day to charge.
5. At dusk, hold the stone once more and reaffirm your commitment to your growth. Carry the stone with you or keep it on your altar as a tangible reminder of your goals.
A Beauty Recipe: Sun-Kissed Solstice Scrub
In honor of Litha, here's a simple, sun-themed beauty recipe:
- 1 cup of brown sugar
- 1/4 cup of coconut oil
- Zest of one lemon
- A few drops of lavender essential oil
Mix the ingredients together and store in an airtight jar. Use this scrub to rejuvenate your skin, invoking the sun's energy for a radiant summer glow.
A Festive Litha Drink: Solstice Sangria
- 1 bottle of white wine
- 1/4 cup brandy
- 2 cups fresh fruit (like peaches, berries, and citrus slices)
- 1-2 tablespoons sugar, optional
- 1 bottle sparkling water, chilled
- Fresh mint and edible flowers for garnish, optional
In a large pitcher, combine the wine and brandy. Add the fresh fruit and sugar, stirring until the sugar is dissolved. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours, then top with sparkling water just before serving. Serve over ice, garnished with fresh mint and edible flowers.
Embracing the Radiance of Litha
Litha is a time of celebration and enchantment, a day to honor the sun’s power, our own inner strength, and the magic that surrounds us. However you choose to celebrate Litha, let it be filled with joy, gratitude, and a deep appreciation for the sun's nurturing light. As we revel in the longest day of the year, let's embrace the powerful energy it brings, carrying it with us as we journey forward on our unique paths.