Lughnasadh Ritual

Cast circle as usual. On the altar is a large, unlit candle, a small vessel of oil, a crystal or stone, plus bread and wine (or substitutes) for communion. If working outdoors, you can use the traditional bonfire instead of the Sun Candle.

Tonight we celebrate Lughnasadh, the beginning of the harvest.

The union of the Goddess and God that culminated at Beltane now brings forth its fruit as the crops ripen in the fields and the first fruits of summer are gathered. At the same time, the Sun God diminishes in his power as the season turns towards autumn; his strength and energy now lie in the ripening crop. As the first sheaves of wheat are gathered, the spirit of the Corn King is housed in woven homes of corn, to be reborn next Spring in the Imbolc fire.

We celebrate the life energy that the Sun God has given by his sacrifice, and the creation that his union with the Goddess has brought forth. At the same time, we give thanks for what we have achieved ourselves this year, for the spiritual advancement we have gained, even as we recognise that, like the Sun and the Earth, we too cannot stand still, but must continue to change and to grow.

A few minutes' silence for trance; meditate on the bounty of the harvest and all that which we have achieved in this year, and on that which we have still to achieve.

We dance in thanks for the summer's fruits
Even as the Sun's might wanes
We dance in thanks for the fruits of our lives
Even as we too change.

Priestess and co-celebrants dance round the centre, chanting:

All: The Sun shall wane, the crops remain.

Priestess earths the energy raised into the unlit candle.

I light this candle to the Sun.

Priestess lights the candle (or fire).

May the life-giving light of the Sun God shine forth and ripen the crops. For it is only by the fruits of Mother Earth that we live, and only by Her health can we too be healthy and grow. May the Sun shine His last brilliance down upon Her and bring His blessings to all that lives, and bring strength and enlightenment into our spiritual lives.

All: So mote it be.

Priestess holds up vessel of oil at the altar, saying:

I dedicate this oil to the Sun, fruit of Mother Earth, an essence of life and of magic.

Priestess passes vessel through the flame of the Lughnasadh candle or fire, saying:

As the Lughnasadh fire burns and the Sun God pours his blessing upon Mother Earth, may the crops ripen and the harvest be plentiful. So too may we bring the fire of our beliefs and our love to heal the Earth from mankind's excesses and depredations, and show our fellow humans that a better way of living is possible.

All: So mote it be.

Priestess visualises healing energy into the oil, carries it once deosil around the circle and touches it to the crystal; after the ritual it is poured onto the Earth as a libation. Priestess then holds up communion bread and wine, saying,

In this communion we share in the riches of the year's harvest.
By the Sun God's sacrifice and Mother Earth's bounty we have food to eat and wine to drink.
He is life itself; and as He wanes and pours His strength into the Mother, his life is reborn into our crops.
We eat the Bread of Life that all on Earth might be fed;
Though everything must die in its due season, in this Communion we share in rebirth.
From season to season we change, from year to year our spirits are reborn;
But never are we truly separate; never are we alone.

Priestess gives communion to co-celebrants and takes communion herself, then holds up wine, and makes the traditional toast:

To the Old Ones: Merry meet and merry part, and merry meet again.

A few minutes silence for meditation, then dispel circle as usual.

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