Lammas takes place on August 1st-2nd, marking the period between midsummer (first day of summer) and the first day of autumn! We are letting go of summer and welcoming the coming of fall.
Lammas is pronounced like “lom-us” and sort of sounds like you are saying “llamas.” It’s derived from “loaf-mass,” marking the first harvest of grains.
- Food / drink:
- Bread / grain
- Beer / cider
- Berries & apples
- Flowers / herbs:
- Clear quartz
- Cats eye
How to celebrate
You can observe Lammas by incorporating any of its correspondences into your day!
The best way to celebrate is to bake bread, and if not, at least eat a lot of good bread on this day. You can visit a bakery and load up on those grains!
Another great way is to drink beer or hard cider.
Some other ideas are baking pie, visiting a farm, making mint tea, planting sunflowers, and taking a walk or being outside in nature.
Besides these activities, there is also some inner work to think about during Lammas.
This is marks the time of beginning to let go. At this point, the year is more than halfway over.
Summer is coming to an end — what are the things you wanted to do this summer that you never got around to? This is your final chance. (I know, quarantine — there’s many things you just won’t be able to do this summer. But there’s other things, like did you spend enough time outside while it was still hot and sunny? Any other goals you were hoping to complete by now?)
But not only the end of summer, we are beginning to approach the end of the whole year. What happened to your new years resolutions? Where did you hope to see yourself by now, at the start of 2020?
We are transitioning from the “coming out” phase of the seasons, back into the “reflection” period of the seasons. This is the best time to put yourself out there and take those risks while you still can. Very soon, the days are going to become darker, your energy levels will fall and your mood may fall too. The time to act is now!
- Demeter — Greek Goddess of agriculture, fertility, harvest, and grains. She is also associated with life and death.
- Demeter’s virgin daughter Persephone was abducted by Hades, God of the underworld. Struck with grief and preoccupied trying to find her daughter, the plants and trees began to die, as she could no longer tend to them. To prevent the extinction of Earth, Zeus had to intervene by sending messenger god Hermes to bring her daughter back. Hades cooperated, only under the condition that Persephone was bound to him for one-third of the year. This story explains the yearly “death” of nature.
- Ceres is the Roman equivalent of Demeter.
- Demeter & Ceres essentially share the same story with different names. Her daughter is Proserpine, God of the underworld is Pluto, and Zeus is Jupiter.
- Ceres was one of the rare goddesses who intervened with human affairs on a daily basis in order to help them. Most other gods and goddesses involved themselves with humans on few occasions.
- Norse gods Freyr and Thor.
The feast of drunkenness
In ancient Egyptian tradition, Lammas is associated with the “Wagy-Djehutet” festival.
This festivals honors Osiris, God of the underworld. They would give offerings to the deceased on this day — specifically food and water. The feast also honors Djehutet (Thoth,) God of writing.
The following day is known as “the feast of Tekhy” or “the feast of drunkenness.”
Therefore — Lammas can also be celebrated by remembering those you have lost, doing some writing, and getting (responsibly) drunk that night.