Online Ritual for Lughnasadh / Lammas

I was inspired by the Full Moon and Total Lunar Eclipse yesterday, and today after doing the initial setup for the Spirit’s Edge Lughnasadh Ritual & Salon tonight, to write a new online ritual to share with everyone. This is different than our ritual tonight, though of course there are consistent themes with the First Harvest.

So, if you’re coming tonight, you can do this ritual later and have a completely new experience! And if you’re not local to St. Louis, this gives you a way to celebrate Lammas with us!

Lammas / Lughnasadh

Lammas or Lughnasadh is one of eight modern day pagan sabbat festivals. Lammas is the First Harvest, the first of three harvest festivals. It is a Celtic harvest festival of grains. One of the mythos for this sacred time of year is that of John Barleycorn.

The bounty of nature in the fields and in our gardens belies that we have actually entered the dying season of the year. The peak of the crops in the field and the baskets of vegetables and fruits from our gardens actually means that things are transforming, they are dying. The plants we eat nourish us and their remains will become fertilizer for the Earth, fertilizer for our hopes and dreams, for our next planting season in spring. We give our gratitude for this bounty and to all of Nature.

At this time, we reap the harvest that we planted this spring. We take stock of our stores,  we prepare for the winter to come, and we begin to fertilize the Earth and our seeds for the planting season to come in spring. We can feel a subtle shift in the air as the summer begins its gentle turning towards the Autumn Equinox. The days are growing shorter, and at the Autumn Equinox, we will again be in a time of equal light and equal dark, with the nights beginning to grow even longer.

As the Sun continues to wane towards the Autumn Equinox, now is the time to partner with the energies of Lammas, combined with this Waning Full Moon / post-Total Lunar Eclipse energy, and the power of Mars to revisit, release and let go all things that are weighing down upon our soul. We free up space on our soul’s journey, making room for our next harvest. We look back in gratitude at the Work we have put in this year and honor the path we have traveled.

We may be entering the dark half of the year, yet we carry the Light, the Torch with us, within our souls. We hold that eternal light of the Sun within our Hearts and Souls, fueling our passions and providing balance, peace and Light in any darkness.

This online ritual is for your private, personal use only, and all rights are reserved. The text of this blog post / online ritual may not be copied or shared. You are of course welcome – and encouraged! – to share the link to this blog post so that others may enjoy the ritual!

Online Lughnasadh / Waning Moon Ritual

Timing:

Any time between now and the New Moon on August 11 would be the best timing to perform this ritual. We are tapping into the Waning Full Moon after the Total Lunar Eclipse yesterday. This all leads into the Partial Solar Eclipse and New Moon on August 11. We are also partnering with the energy of Mars, and our Spirit’s Edge Samhain Ritual in the fall will place a lovely end-cap on this Mars related Work. I shared many links about all of these events on my Shea Morgan Facebook page.  Annie Bones’ Celestial Forecaster is simply the best, and you may click HERE for her Facebook page. Also, here is one other astrological link.

What you will need:

  1. An image or representation of Corn
  2. A stone or a stick (may be found on the Earth, such as going for a walk / a walking meditation with the intention of finding a stick or stone for this working)
  3. An image or representation of the Moon
  4. A candle for the Corn Mother (you may use tea lights or any type of candle) 
  5. A candle for the Corn God (you may use tea lights or any type of candle) 
  6. Your journal or something to write on and a pen.
  7. Music to play for meditation or perhaps your own drum or rattle, and anything else you use during meditations such as a pillow, blanket, shawl, etc.

You are welcome to share any photos or comments about your experience on our Spirit’s Edge: A Seeker’s Salon group page – all are welcome to join! Also, later we will likely offer tokens for sale from our Temple’s Lughnasadh Ritual on that same group page.

Prepare the Altar and Yourself:

Prepare the altar with the items as noted above. You may add any other seasonal items or tools that call to you.

You may wish to take an Epson &/or sea salt bath. You may wish to smudge with incense or a purifying spray.

I have written a Circle Casting and Quarter calls below. You may use these or prepare your space according to your preference.

Please note that the quarter calls below utilize the Alchemical Orientation with Fire in the East and Air in the South to create a tension or crossroads for this working. If you prefer, you may switch the orientation, making appropriate adjustments to the language.

Cast the Circle

I cast this circle in Love and Light
I cast this circle with the Gods’ Might
I cast this circle for Magick that be
in the best way possible for me.
This circle is cast. I am between the worlds.
So mote it be.

Call the Quarters/Directions

North /Earth

Hail Guardian of the Watchtower of the North!
Element of Earth, Divine solidifying force of all of Nature
Majestic and solid Oak, Axis of the World.
World Tree reaching into the Earth and upward to the Heavens.
I invite you to attend my circle this magickal Lammas night.
Hail and Welcome!

East/Fire

Hail Guardian of the Watchtower of the East!
Element of Fire, Fueling the power of all of Nature
Beautiful Alder, fire dancing in your branches.
Lighting the way so that I may see.
I invite you to attend my circle this magickal Lammas night.
Hail and Welcome!

South/Air

Hail Guardian of the Watchtower of the South!
Element of Air, Divine inspiration flowing through all of Nature
Wise Apple, gifting me Wisdom on my path.
Providing the sweetness of Awen through your fruit and branches
I invite you to attend my circle this magickal Lammas night.
Hail and Welcome!

West/Water

Hail Guardian of the Watchtower of the West!
Element of Water, Creative force flowing through all of Nature,
Elegant Willow, Whispers of the Divine shared by your branches
I invite you to attend my circle this magickal Lammas night.
Hail and Welcome!

Honor the Celestials

Oh, Glorious Moon, so full and bright
Your waning path I journey tonight
Help me gently release all that does not serve
Towards the New Moon, Solar Eclipse do I curve,
Let my working tonight be done with harm to None.
With the power of Mars, by my Will, this Work is done.
I thank and honor you for your illumination and your gifts.
I walk in balance and peace under your gaze and in your midst.
Blessed be!

Call the Detiies

Corn Mother

Oh Beautiful and Kind Corn Mother,
Hear my call!
Apron full of Corn and Nature’s bounty,
I call on you to bring forth your prosperous blessings,
Sharing them with me as I celebrate this first harvest
And help me prepare for the planting season to come.
Join my circle this magickal Lammas night.
Hail and Welcome!

Light Her candle.

Corn God

Oh Wise and Winsome Corn God,
Hear my call!
Stalwart God of bravery and steadfastness,
I call on you to share your gifts of the harvest with me,
Bringing prosperity, illuminating my path with Love and Light
While you fertilize the Earth for the planting season to come.
Join my circle this magickal Lammas night.
Hail and Welcome!

Light His candle.

Alignment

Hold the stone or stick from nature as you read the Ballad of John Barleycorn aloud three times (3x). Also hold it during your meditation. All of this will charge your stone or stick with the power of your working.

There were three men come from the West
Their fortunes for to try,
And these three made a solemn vow:
“John Barleycorn must die.”
They plowed, they sowed, they harrowed him in,
Threw clods upon his head,
‘Til these three men were satisfied
John Barleycorn was dead.

They let him lie for a very long time,
‘Til the rains from heaven did fall,
When little Sir John raised up his head
And so amazed them all.

They let him stand ’til Mid-Summer’s Day
When he looked both pale and wan;
Then little Sir John grew a long, long beard
And so became a man.

They hired men with their scythes so sharp
To cut him off at the knee;
They rolled him and tied him around the waist,
And served him barbarously.

They hired men with their sharp pitchforks
To pierce him to the heart,
But the loader did serve him worse than that,
For he bound him to the cart.

They wheeled him ’round and around the field
‘Til they came unto a barn,
And there they took a solemn oath
On poor John Barleycorn.

They hired men with their crab-tree sticks
To split him skin from bone,
But the miller did serve him worse than that,
For he ground him between two stones.

There’s little Sir John in the nut-brown bowl,
And there’s brandy in the glass,
And little Sir John in the nut-brown bowl
Proved the strongest man at last.

The huntsman cannot hunt the fox
Nor loudly blow his horn
And the tinker cannot mend his pots
Without John Barleycorn.

Collected by Robert Burns
There was three kings into the east,
Three kings both great and high,
And they hae sworn a solemn oath
John Barleycorn should die.

They took a plough and plough’d him down,
Put clods upon his head,
And they hae sworn a solemn oath
John Barleycorn was dead.

But the cheerful Spring came kindly on’
And show’rs began to fall;
John Barleycorn got up again,
And sore surpris’d them all.

The sultry suns of Summer came,
And he grew thick and strong:
His head weel arm’d wi pointed spears,
That no one should him wrong.

The sober Autumn enter’d mild,
When he grew wan and pale;
His bendin joints and drooping head
Show’d he began to fail.

His colour sicken’d more and more,
He faded into age;
And then his enemies began
To show their deadly rage.

They’ve taen a weapon, long and sharp,
And cut him by the knee;
They ty’d him fast upon a cart,
Like a rogue for forgerie.

They laid him down upon his back,
And cudgell’d him full sore.
They hung him up before the storm,
And turn’d him o’er and o’er.

They filled up a darksome pit
With water to the brim,
They heav’d in John Barleycorn-
There, let him sink or swim!

They laid him upon the floor,
To work him farther woe;
And still, as signs of life appear’d,
They toss’d him to and fro.

They wasted o’er a scorching flame
The marrow of his bones;
But a miller us’d him worst of all,
For he crush’d him between two atones.

And they hae taen his very hero blood
And drank it round and round;
And still the more and more they drank,
Their joy did more abound.

John Barleycorn was a hero bold,
Of noble enterprise;
For if you do but taste his blood,
‘Twill make your courage rise.

‘Twill make a man forget his woe;
‘Twill heighten all his joy:
‘Twill make the widow’s heart to sing,
Tho the tear were in her eye.

Then let us toast John Barleycorn,
Each man a glass in hand;
And may his great posterity
Ne’er fail in old Scotland!

(the above version from harvestfestivals.net; there are many variations of this common text online and in books)

Working / Meditation

Meditate on the power of the Mythos of John Barleycorn. Ponder the implications of this story and its archetypal energy on your own life and soul’s journey.

Turn on your music and/or rattle or drum. Get into a comfortable meditative position.

Hold your stone or stick, as a touchstone (or if you’re drumming you may place it in your lap or on your altar), and mentally hold the Intent to journey through the Great World Tree, down through its roots, into your inner sacred space, where you may commune with the deities or other spirits. All here happens in the best way possible or you.

From there, you could have the Intent to see which guide or deity approaches and communes with you. You may wish to meditate with the Corn Mother and Corn God and seek them out for their wisdom. You may wish to journey to commune with the Moon for further illumination.

Send energy into your stone or stick.

Journal on all you have experienced and learned.

Ground yourself as needed by sitting on the ground or placing your hands on the ground to release any excess energy.

Closing the Ritual:

At this time, you may choose to speak words of love and gratitude to the Corn Mother and Corn God, the Moon and to Mars. When you feel you are finished, thank the spirits for their presence in your space and wish them farewell.

You may perform a release of the Gods, the Celestials and the Quarters, by doing them in reverse order, using the initial “calls”, but just switching/tweaking them to “Hail and Farewell!”.

Then release the circle by saying.

I release this Circle as a symbol of my working tonight
For the highest good of all, I manifest my Intent in this Light.
So mote it be.

Place your stone or stick in a sacred place, such as on your altar. Or you may return it to the land as a gift or offering.

Be sure to journal your experience and to pay close attention to your dreams, synchronicities and omens that you may receive over the next few weeks in answer to your working of this rite.

Wishing you all the prosperous abundance of the First Harvest!

Blessed be! xo, Shea

Written by Shea Morgan, Spirit’s Edge Shamonial Temple Founder & High Priestess, with Love and Magick!

Our Lammas Newsletter, where you may also click to subscribe is HERE.

copyright 2018; all rights reserved … This ritual was written by Temple High Priestess Shea Morgan, unless noted otherwise, and all rights are reserved. It may be used for your personal/private use only. If you wish to use this or a variation for a group in the future, please contact Shea Morgan for the Spirit’s Edge Shamonial Temple at ravins52252@mypacks.net for permission; this ritual may not be published or used publicly elsewhere without prior written permission and attribution.

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