It’s 5:30 in the morning on this sunny summery Monday morning. But today isn’t any ordinary day. No, today is a very special day and one that I love celebrating. Or at least – I used to. Back when I was younger, healthier, in better shape and had more energy to do all the things I wanted to do. Like when I first started my journey on the Wiccan path.
Is that I’m calling it now? I guess I am. For now it’s a good label – and you all know how much I detest labels and having to fit myself into one tiny checkbox.
It’s Summer Solstice – one of my favorite spiritual celebrations. It’s celebrated by people from around the world of all religions or practices and has been for thousands of years. I’ve already written a long post about it that I shared last year.
My spiritual path began at an early age I suppose you could say. I’ve always been obsessed with the darker things in life. Horror movies. Horror novels. Even playing spooky games. The darker themed – the better. But as I got older, I realized – the darker life got – the more darkness followed me everywhere I went.
Even in my last condo, it never felt like home. I had zero privacy as I could hear everything my neighbours did. And they could hear everything I did. That’s the trouble with living in the city. I’m not meant for this life. My heart longs to be out in the country or on an acreage close to the mountains. But as long as I’m single, and while my dad is still alive – it’s the city life for me.
Darkness vs. the light.
Isn’t that the epitome of all religions and spiritual practice? I think it’s the one thing most of us have in common. It’s not a battle between good and evil. It’s a battle of light and dark. This is why we celebrate Summer Solstice. It’s the longest day of the year. The light beats the darkness for a few more hours.
I know I’ve talked a lot about the Danish side of my family over the years in running this blog. But did I ever mention my mother’s side of the family? No? Well – you’re in for a ride here.
My mother was born in London, England. I believe her mother was English as well. Her nickname was Tupsey. I never got to meet her as she died a year after my mom and dad got married. On “Tupsey’s” side of the family, she had French, a little tiny bit of Indian. That’s according to my mom anyway. My sister had a DNA test done about ten years ago and was stunned to learn that we had 2% German in our blood. And also, 2% Neanderthal. That actually explains a lot. There was no Indian in the DNA – so I’m not sure how accurate that is about the Indian background.
Now on my grandfather’s side of the family – we have strong ties to Ireland. Which I think explains my love for all things Celtic. I can’t get enough of movies like Lord of the Rings, Ever After, etc. And I listen to Celtic music. A lot. Like, a lot. Even my mom or rather, “mum”, had a zest for Irish drinking songs and would make up her own lyrics for family events that would get the party started. Songs like Irish Rover and my grandfather’s favorite to sing, Danny Boy.
I mean, this lady is pure magic. We even drove one year for three hours to see her perform in Calgary.
My grandfather John, once told me that we had a family member named “Dulac” who was beheaded during the French Revolution. I really wish I had asked him more questions about this. Because trying to find someone in the 1700’s by the name of Dulac, is like trying to find someone named Smith in the US today. It’s an impossible feat. And sadly, there’s no one left in the family to ask. I wish I had asked my mum all these questions before she died – but you never think of these things when it’s important.
I feel strong ties to the Irish side. I feel like maybe, in another life, I might have even lived in Ireland. That’s a story for another day. I’ve had vivid dreams of having long flowing red hair, wearing a green dress and dancing in a barn around a fire with a boy named – James. Yes. The same James that I dated off and on for 20 years. Was it just a dream? I don’t know. But it FELT real.
Ireland is a place I’ve always wanted to visit. It’s on my bucket list of places to see. And Celtic music. I can’t begin to describe what I feel when I listen to the Celtic harp and flute. It feels like “home” to me. Isn’t that strange? For a country or place you’ve never been to? And it can feel more like home, than where home actually is?
Why is this all important and what does it have to do with Summer Solstice? I think last night was a turning point for me and I made a real break through in my spiritual journey. I’ve struggled for a long time with sticking to one practice or one belief system. I liked to “bounce” around. Or as James called it, “the nomad life”. I hated labels and wanted to learn as much as I could about various practices and religions.
Over the years, but more so in my early twenties, I read everything I could get my hands on at the time. I bought all kinds of books on Wicca, Witchcraft and Shamanism. While I really love the principles of Shamanism, with all the things happening around the residential schools – I feel like maybe I should learn more about my heritage and cultural ties to the spiritual world.
I really detest labels – so last night, while thinking of things to do for Summer Solstice celebrations – I made a list of all the things I love about each practice. I thought about how I could combine them all into one. Or maybe I could just take aspects of all three and keep on with what I’m doing? There is so much to consider.
I found some great videos on YouTube from younger witches who reminded me this:
Forget the labels. Practice what you feel drawn to. Learn as much as you can about it. Meditate often. And remember karma. What you put it out into the world, comes back at you. If you are constantly dwelling in negative and dark thoughts, then you’ll attract only darkness in return.
That was a lightbulb moment for me – and I literally went – A-ha!
That’s why things are always spiraling for me. And so, I spent the night doing all the things I love doing and have missed doing. Why? Because I was so afraid of what my family or coworkers would think of me if I openly practiced “the craft.” They had mocked me in the past for wearing crystals and gasp, a Pentagram. That one caused a lot of stirs at family events.
I even got a “you know the Devil believes in you” talk from my family doctor, which I thought was really inappropriate.
But the crazy thing was, other people like me – would nod, wink and say, “Nice,” because they knew who I was – and what I was into.
And now I realize that the reason I always feel at war with myself – is because I am. And I need to fix that. I need to become — “whole again”.
For the record, the pentagram isn’t evil. It’s a symbol. It’s a star. It represents the five elements of the earth. Much like the Indigenous medicine wheel. North, east, south, west. Earth, air, fire, water. Wicca is a very spiritual practice and can focus a lot on earth magic. Working with natural elements to achieve — whatever your heart’s desire. Usually through meditations, prayer, and manifestations.
Yes, there are some people who abuse the craft and give it a bad name. Hollywood embellishes things and ridicules what they do not know.
For me – the craft is meditation, creating music, exercising and getting healthy, working with crystals, using herbs like in teas and cooking, getting out more in nature and helping others on their spiritual paths as well.
I need to find some way to combine my love for herbs, crystals, divination, writing, music and everything – with my Celtic heritage. And so, today marks a new beginning. A new journey. A new chapter in my life.
One that I’ll call – The Celtic Path.
Summer Solstice Rituals
And so, I tried a bunch of new things last night to ring in Summer Solstice. Today, I feel – lighter. Happier. At peace almost. It’s a serene sort of feeling. I feel renewed. Energized. I know the universe has been sending me all these messages but maybe now I’m finally listening to them.
I started the night off by watching a few newer videos on YouTube. While doing that, I made some really pretty crystal decorations to hang in my window. Working with gems or crystals can help to brighten up your home and ward off negative energy. I am hoping to hit flea markets this year to stock up on crystals to keep around the house too. I have a few – but they’re just so beautiful. (pictures to come – they’re “charging” right now)
I’m also charging some water which I’ve put out on the balcony. This is new to me. You are supposed to let the water sit in a bottle or jar and charge in the sun for 24 hours. Today is important, because it’s the longest day of the year. The most sunlight. And that’s true, because I saw the sunrise at 4:15 am this morning.
I sat outside and it was so cold. One of the best things you can do on this day is to go out and connect with nature. Go for a drive in the country. Go for a hike. Go for a swim in the ocean. Or just meditate in your backyard.
I just sat on my bench and listened to the birds chirp. And the world was quiet for just a few moments before traffic started up again.
Summer Solstice or Midsommer (the Danish way) – is often celebrated with a large bonfire, some tasty meade, hearty food, fruits, vegetables, music and fellowship.
If you don’t have these things – then simply light a few candles. Or go outside and do some gardening, pick some herbs, bake some blueberry bread or a honey cake.
Get together with your close friends. Your family. Your tribe.
Today is a day for celebration. And I’m so glad I could share this with you all.
“Merry meet and merry part, bright the cheeks and warm the heart”
There aren’t many recorded celebrations that I can find — so here’s an enjoyable video of a Druid Ceremony. I think I just added another item to my never ending bucket list.