Fall equinox is upon us, and this enters my favorite season of the year. It's not too hot, it's not too cold, it's just right for humans to live. And unlike spring, which certainly has its charms, there's one big advantage of the fall season: Lots of food! Before modern transport and industry, this was the time of the year when everyone worked feverishly to collect as much food as they possibly could and preserve it, with the plan of having enough to last through roughly mid-June when the first leafy greens of the next year's crops begin to become edible. Whatever couldn't be preserved in any way other than fat around your belly had to be eaten now, so there was also a lot of feasting to do just that.
For the rite of Lughnassadh, my grove celebrates this in the Irish cultural style, and a key aspect of the Irish celebration of Lughnassadh was a major festival gathering across all of Ireland. The mythological story of this festival concerns its namesake, Lugh of the many skills, the hero who shows up just when the Tuatha de Danann think all is lost and are suffering under the oppression of their Fomorian enemies and defeats them in battle.
Midsummer is upon us, and that means that the crops are planted and growing, the sun is high, and I will be heading to my grove to celebrate in a Norse-focused ritual. Regardless of planned celebration, I take the season as the right time to honor the sun in all its glory as it has its greatest effect on our lives during this time.
It's time for another song! This one is focused on the Sidhe-folk, literally the people of the mounds. What they are is confusing at best to us humans, but they're a clearly important group of beings in Irish lore and thus worthy of honoring with song in this a season where they are traditionally given extra attention. Plus, I was seeking to capture a bit of the healthy fear involved in approaching these beings, since they aren't exactly friendly to most people.
This spring equinox, both I and the group I'm a part of have decided to focus on the wonderous Earth Mother in all her glory. Whatever you call her, this time of year is always a great time to think about her amazing beauty, especially as the plants start to wake up, and water, soil, and sun make their magic happen in the form of early spring flowers and seed germinating as we get ready for planting.