Monday, August 2, 2010

The Sabbat of Lughnasadh or Lammas

Many of us around the world have been celebrating Lughnasadh or Lammas this last weekend. 

Here is a good summary of the holiday from Wiccapedia:

"Lughnasadh marked the beginning of the harvest season, the Harvest of Grain (Bread), the ripening of first fruits (usually berries), and was traditionally a time of community gatherings, market festivals, horse races and reunions with distant family and friends. Among the Irish it was a favored time for handfastings — trial marriages that would generally last a year and a day, with the option of ending the contract before the new year, or later formalizing it as a more permanent marriage

In Celtic mythology, the Lughnasadh festival is said to have been begun by the god Lugh, as a funeral feast and games commemorating his foster-mother, Tailtiu, who died of exhaustion after clearing the plains of Ireland for agriculture. The first location of the Áenach Tailteann gathering was at Telltown, located between Navan and Kells. Historically, the Áenach Tailteann was a time for contests of strength and skill, and a favored time for contracting marriages and winter lodgings. A peace was declared at the festival, and religious celebrations were also held. The festival survived as the Taillten Fair, and was revived for a period in the twentieth centry as the Telltown Games"  ...(Cont.)...

In Los Angeles, CA they had a number of celebrations as reported by Joanne Elliott of

"...Lammas or loaf mass day is the festival of the wheat harvest. Although most modern day Pagans are not growing wheat, they celebrate the cross-quarter holiday (a holiday between the solar holidays) by giving thanks for what they’ve grown in their lives, or by releasing something they no longer want. It’s also a time of bounty and a great time for doing prosperity rituals and spells.

In the Goddess Temple of Orange County ritual in Costa Mesa, the women celebrated each other. A Vanatru Lammas ritual celebrating the Vanir God Ing-Frey was held at El Toro Park in Lake Forest. Celebrants thanked the God and partook of a symbolic Lammas loaf. In Rancho Palos Verdes, the Iseum of Isis Paedusis began with ritual petitions to the Morrigan – Celtic goddess of reaping – regarding the letting go of something and then followed up with a prosperity ritual. Other events were held by Sage Onyxdragon, Circle of Aradia, and by Pan Pipes Magickal Marketplace."  ...(Cont.)...

Terry Smith a local Pagan in Pineville, Louisiana had this to say in his local paper:

"...Lammas harvest feasts include: tomatoes, peaches (cobbler), corn (popcorn), potatoes (hash browns), cabbage (sauerkraut or cole slaw), onions (h.b.), grains (feast breads, cornbread sticks, sourdough, or homemade brat buns), berries (especially blackberry pies in honor of the harvest), cider and barley soup.

We Americans celebrate the goddess Ceres with our "morning crunchies" or bran muffins." ...(Cont.)...

More on Lughnasadh or Lammas:
Lughnasadh - Overview by Christina
Lammas, Lughnasadh -Myth*ing Links
LUGHNASADH - Kathleen Dupree
LAMMAS The First Harvest by Mike Nichols
Irish Fire Festivals: Lughnasadh
Lugh, Samildánach - "Many-Gifted One"
Celebrating Lammas -Waverly Fitzgerald
The Harvest of the Grain
Lammas Ritual
The Celtic Cross-Quarter Day of Lughnasad
Lughnasadh Recipes
Celebration of the First Harvest Solitary Ritual
Inkubus Sukkubus Corn King
the wicker man - corn rigs