Celebrating the Summer Solstice


For Seekers – Practices for Soul & Spirit – Sanctuary – Seasonal Observances

Ancient sun, eternally young,

giver of life and source of energy,

In coal and oil, in plant and wind and tide,

in spiritual light and human embrace.

You kindle the heavens, you shine within us

(for we are suns with hearts afire –

we light the world as you light the sky

and find clouds within whose shadows are dark);

We give thanks for your rays and clouds your rays draw up,

for the sky route your travel faithfully as we traverse the globe,

For your journey of earth which draws us together,

For our journey of dreams which sustains us when apart. 

Congregation of Abraxas from Earth Prayers

The Summer Solstice comes at one moment in time (Wednesday, June 21 at 10:57am ET, time zone converter) here in the Northern Hemisphere but outward from that moment ripples a whole season influenced by the abundance of light and the life that it makes possible. Across time and cultures, people have observed the Summer Solstice with festivities and observances of this height of the sun’s light, including:

  • Standing in the sunlight at noon and revealing in its energy.
  • Planting or tending to a flower, herb, or tree.
  • Eating a fabulous meal of seasonal food.
  • Attending or creating (safely) a bonfire or fireworks show.
  • Dancing, singing, and celebrating with family and community.

Here are Soul Path Sanctuary we have found our way to some special practices.

Working with a Solstice Seed Card

At the Winter Solstice we select Solstice Seeds of the New. For most of us that is a Tarot card  or two pulled that day. We work with these Seeds through the whole solar year, from Solstice to Solstice letting the Seed evolve and grow to help us learn its lessons and about ourselves.

The Summer Solstice is the perfect time to check in with the Seed using practices such as: 

  • Taking the card for a Wisdom Wander.
  • Meeting the card through meditative practices such as Visio Divina.
  • Pulling Tarot or oracle cards in response to questions like: How is this Seed growing within me?  What is the Seed calling me to? How can I tend the Seed going forward? What can I harvest if I continue to learn the lessons of the Seed? 

If you don’t yet have a Solstice Seed, go ahead and find one on the Summer Solstice. You could ponder how it has already been growing in your life since the Winter Solstice. Or it might suggest a new Seed to be planted now. You might find that your soul is best served by Seed tending that stretches between Summer Solstices.

Harvesting and Storing Up the Fruits of the Season

A few years ago I began harvesting strawberries on the Summer Solstice, freezing them, and eating them on the Winter Solstice. The practice is as simple as it sounds, but last year I did write up some tips and suggestions for connecting oracular play to the practice that you can check out.  Strawberries are a particularly sweet treat but it could be done with any plant harvested on the Solstice and then stored through freezing of drying: kale, early herbs like dill, or linden flowers come to mind for the northeast of the United States where I live. What grows in profusion near you? What qualities would you like to carry from the abundance of summer into the fallow time of winter? Make a choice that reflects the weaving together of your soul needs and what is happening in the natural world where you live.

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