The sun shines bright upon us as it reaches the climactic stage of its progress above us (or we around it, to be more accurate). This will happen at 11:28 GMT on the 21st of this month, and is the longest day of our year.
Litha, Midsummers Eve, Summer Solstice, Ukon juhla- No matter what you call it, this day is a catalyst for celebrations everywhere. In honor of it, I have chosen yellow as the subject of this article.
Upon Litha, we celebrate the abundance of nature and the joys of summer in full bloom. This is considered an excellent time for divination, handfastings, and speaking with the spirits, as the veils are said to be thinner upon that night. There was a tradition that involved staying awake for a full 24 hours to see the Fae as dusk broke on Solstice Night.
Yellow represents the sun’s lifegiving force. Just as the Sun is the center of our solar system, the solar plexus chakra (also yellow or golden) falls directly in the middle of our bodies, right around the navel. This is called the Manipura. It is said to govern the realms of personal power as well as spiritual expansiveness and growth. In older stories of out of body experiences, this chakra (as well as the brow) was said to house the cord connecting one’s soul to their body.
It is the power center for the entire body as well as the place that food converts to energy, strictly physically speaking. It is experienced as the center where one’s fears take root, and if they are not cleared out, can slow or even stop not only physical processes such as proper digestion, but mental and emotional processes, too.
Following along the same line, there are some New Age traditionists that identify the color as Yellow Ray. This Ray is said to symbolize harmony through conflict.
Yellow invokes the long and short wavelength receptors in our eyes, with apparently no provocation to the short receptors. Our sun appears yellow due to its temperature- there are red suns, white suns, even blue.
Litha is a wonderful time to harness the energy of that powerhouse, the sun, upon its longest journey of the year above us. Once we’ve taken the time to meditate and clear out all miscellaneous thoughts, we can connect to the Earth with our base chakra and take time to center ourselves, opening all chakras and rotating the energy from the earth up through the crown, then back down again. Once we have established the energy rotation, we can focus on the Sun’s power, either drawing it directly into our solar plexus or filtering it through the crown and down with the rest, strengthening each chakra as we go. However, I would take special time to strengthen the solar plexus on Litha, as the benefits of such energy work will have more power (staying and otherwise).
As we commune with the Sun directly, we give thanks and blessings to it (or Him) in return, for without the sun none of us upon the Earth could exist. And upon closing the circle, we always give back whatever is not needed in our bodies to the Earth, so other life forms can benefit from the boost as well as the Earth Herself. She knows exactly where to put it all.
Calendula, a yellow flower, was traditionally picked on Litha night as a powerful charm to ward off evil. Great bonfires were lit to ward off the evil spirits that were said to arise to wander the earth as the sun begins to fade in power again. Some would take the embers from these fires to their hearths and light the home fires from them, that the power of their ritual would enter the home to stay.
So soak up the sun, enjoy the love energy that is freely given all around us, and celebrate the magical bounty and blessings that summer brings. Even in the midst of celebration, strength is needed at this troubled time in Earth’s history, so remember to stoke those fires, within and without. Keep them burning bright, and never fear, for all follow the Wheel of the Year in microcosm and macrocosm. Brightest Blessings.
Elements: Air, Fire
divination, Clairvoyance, Alertness, Growth, Prosperity, Learning, Changes, Harmony, Creativity, Confidence, Communication, Study, Travel, Leadership
Astrology: Sun, Leo, Sunday, Mercury, Wednesday
Herbs and Flowers: Calendula, Marigold, Buttercup, Monkeyflower, Chrysanthemums, Tulips, Goldenrod, Johnny Jump-ups, Echinacea, Dandelion, Sunflower, Tansy, Dock, Cumin, Ginger, Kaffir, Galingale, Fennel, Butterroot, Foxglove
Divinities: Ra, Orula, Orunmila, Oshoshi, Oshun, Shakti, Sun gods