Mar 202012

Lammas, also known as Lughnasad (Loo-nahs-ah) or Lughnasadh, is an ancient pagan festival that is still celebrated today on July 31st, August 1st, or 2nd. It is the time of year when the gifts of summer begin to fade. Fruit drops from trees as their leaves begin to change colors. Flowers begin to wither away. In ancient times, it was believed the Gods would begin to lose their strength.

Lammas literally translates as “Loaf Mass” an Anglo-Saxon name given to this festival. Lunasa is Irish Gaelic for August. It follows that Lammas is the Feast of Bread in August. It is a time of appreciation for nature, Mother Earth and her harvests. The festival is named for the Celtic god Lugh, “the shining one”. An ancient Celtic grain god that was sacrificed then resurrected to honor the Earth Mother Agusta, patron goddess of games and festivals.

Lammas festivals and fairs are still popular although the ritualistic practices are generally left for the individual rather than at community gatherings. At these fairs people sell their produce, crafts are displayed and sold, and games are played (just like your local county fair). Ballycastle in Northern Ireland celebrates the Oul’ Lammas Fair, chartered in 1606. Activities vary from the sale of sheep and cattle to fortune telling. In Hungary, it is customary to have fresh baked bread from the new harvest with a glass of wine. A feast featuring the harvest is served with oven-baked bread, berries, grapes, nuts, apples, corn, and grain products. Planting the seeds from the fruits of the meal are considered to bring continued prosperity.

Set a table for Lammas much as you would for Thanksgiving with colors of pumpkin orange, sunny yellow, muted brown, and sage green. Use woven wheat placements and make a centerpiece of brilliant sunflowers, assorted nuts, and crabapples. In addition, agates and moonstones will bring good fortune and joy on Lammas.

A Chant for Lammas
Start the chant in a whisper, growing louder as the chant progresses.

Ashes to ashes, dust to dust,
We shall go as we can and do as we must.
The body may die but the Spirit is free
To do greater wonders, so mote it be.

Ashes to ashes, clay to clay,
We shall seek for our center and find our own way.
The flesh may be blind but the Spirit can see,
The gods within all, so mote it be.

Ashes to ashes, sand to sand,
We will use all our talents to heal our great land.
The flesh may be weak, but the Spirit’s in me
Is full with her blessings, so mote it be.

Herbs and flowers: all grains, grapes, heather, blackberries, sunflowers, nuts, and crabapples

Incense: sandalwood and rose

Colors: orange, yellow, brown, and green

Gemstones: agates and moonstones

Decorations: corn dollies, wheat weavings, and grain

Foods: breads, apple cider, blackberries, pies, rice, and herbal teas

Use the navigation area on the left to find crafts and recipes for Lammas.

Lammas products from Zazzle

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 March 20, 2012  Posted by at 11:39 am Celebrations Tagged with: , , ,