Ah, Midsummer, also known as Litha, St. John’s Day and the Summer Solstice. It falls on June 20th or 21st and has been celebrated around the globe and called by many names almost since the dawn of time. It is the longest day of the year and marks the official first day of summer. But alas, the modern witch may not have time to organize a bonfire and cook a feast or even make time for ritual magic if you have a job to go to on that day.
This year I have decided to keep the Summer Solstice super low key. I must admit that because of the oppressive heat in Southern Missouri this is hardly my favorite time of year to begin with. So, maybe that plays into my apathy a little as well. Either way, I will observe my own little rituals around the home that I keep for the changing of each season…replacing the Spring decor with more vibrant Summer things, switching out my Spring makeup for Summer (hello bronzer and lighter formulas!) and probably doing another purge of the clothes that Fox has outgrown. But these little rituals are mine, and I do like to do something with others on the Solstice, so it is lucky that two of my closest girlfriends and their families, along with mine, are planning a dinner out on Wednesday.
Now, let it be known that none of my friends in this particular group of people are Witches or even Pagan for that matter. Nope, we aren’t going to dinner for a Solstice celebration, but to get our husbands and children together in the same room because usually it is just us girls. But I AM a witch and even though my friends won’t be “celebrating” the same way I am, it is perfectly aligned with the old tradition. Families joining around the table to share food and connect with each other on this longest day of the year. We might end up eating at the chain pasta restaurant with plastic candles on the table instead of at a harvest table outdoors near a raging fire, but what is important is that we are together and laughing and checking in with one another and nurturing that web of support we created so long ago when we were just kids ourselves.
I think that with everything we are expected to keep up with in this modern world, it’s okay to cut ourselves some slack from time to time. Especially when it concerns Sabbats or Holy Days that most people don’t celebrate too. It makes you no less a witch if you don’t go out of your way to do something special for each Sabbat, just as it wouldn’t make someone less Christian if they didn’t put up a tree and wrap presents.
Being a “Witch” has become very fashionable again in the last few years and I think it is important to talk about what truly makes a witch and what is just optional ideology that has been adopted by neopaganism in recent decades. At the end of the day it is your magic (whatever version you adhere to) that really sets you apart as a witch.
Whatever your Summer Solstice ends up looking like this year remember that all you need to do to commemorate the day is to step outside for a moment and open your arms to Father Sun!
~ Blessed Be ~