Lughnasadh 2012

harvest of gifts for Lughnasadh

In Ireland summer ends officially around August 15th and yields to the season of Lughnasadh. The festival of Lughnasadh, which in ancient times lasted for two weeks, marks the beginning of this season.

In earlier times in Ireland, Lughnasadh was a gathering time for communities and Meithals were common occurances as people gathered to save the harvest together. When the harvest was saved people gathered to celebrate the fruitfulness of the earth and the successful journey of the community with their land. During these gatherings people also shared their personal gifts and talents, especially those that had come to fruition over the previous year.  It was a time of gratitude and celebration for all that had been achieved during the period from Samhain (November) until Lughnasadh. It was a joyful time with much singing and dancing and fun.

As always life and death are never too far apart, so at Lughnasadh flowers were buried to indicate the end of summer and the death of fertility for that season.  For us modern humans, Lughnasadh is an opportunity for us to celebrate all that has come to fruition within ourselves, our gardens and our communities. Each Lughnasadh the harvest will be different and will be a consequence of our particular circumstances that year!

So take a moment to reflect on what you are harvestings this Lughnasadh. What new talents have you discovered and fostered?  What qualities are you honing this year? What friendships, what projects are you harvesting this Lughnasadh?

It was customary for the tribes to gather and reconnect at this time, so who and where are your tribe and how well are you connected with them? In the present world the tribe we belong to may not be limited to people who live around us. Our tribe may be a mixture of local and global  friends, people with whom we can be ourselves and with whom we feel comfortable. Connecting with our tribe supports us in our journey!

For me Lughnasadh is about gratitude for the abundance in our lives. Meister Eckhart, the  14th century Christian mystic, once remarked  that “if the only prayer you said in your life was thank you it would be enough.”

Gratitude opens the heart to receive more of the gifts given so freely by the universe to those open to receive!  How much abundance are you open to receive?

Le gra agus beannachtai