The Summer Solstice is an annual astronomical occurrence that welcomes the longest day of the year and the first day of summer in the Northern Hemisphere. On the Summer Solstice, this top half of the Earth receives more sunlight than any other day of the year because of the North Pole’s positioning closest to the sun at this moment. The word solstice derives from the Latin meanings of sol (sun) and stare or sister (to stand or stop). Celebrated culturally, environmentally, and spiritually since ancient times, the Summer Solstice is globally recognized, holding sacred meaning for our communities, cultures, and planet.
Experienced through a spiritual and supernatural lens since ancient times, the Summer Solstice holds sacred space as both a beginning and an ending of the Solar cycle.
The Sun reaches its peak and radiates an electric energy of fire and passion, intimately reconnecting us to our deepest intentions and creative abilities. This season symbolizes a space of rebirth, a space where reflection and gratitude meet manifestation and expansion. This is a time to re-center and renew our way of being – within ourselves, within our relationships, and within the world as a whole.
Imagery / Tess Guinery
The Roots Within Ancient Cultures
Ancient cultures paid close attention to the seasons through astronomical events, such as the Solstices, as it directly impacted their behavior and therefore, their survival. Through the awareness and understanding of these environmental cycles, ancient communities were able to expand their knowledge about the resources and activities best suited for each season of growth. As one of the earliest astronomical observations, the Summer Solstice laid the foundation for teachings of mathematics, mechanics, astronomy, and history within prehistoric societies, as well as held sacred space within religious and mystical practices.
Almost every ancient culture has marked the Summer Solstice in some way, as well as held space for the commemoration of this moment through ritual, celebration, or creation. In ancient Greek culture, the Summer Solstice marked the beginning of the new year, being celebrated with an annual festival honoring the god Cronus. This festival was a gathering symbolizing equality, bringing together all freemen and slaves in communion with one another. The Mayas built an observatory to align with the Sun during the Solstices. The community would gather and view in amazement alongside their king. The Egyptians built the Great Pyramids so that the Sun would set perfectly between two of the Pyramids on the Summer Solstice, when viewed from the Sphinx. The Sioux held a magnificent ritual,The Sun Dance, performed each Summer Solstice. Every participant’s body was embellished with colors of red, blue, yellow, white, and black to symbolize the sunset, sky, lightning, light, and night. The raising of a tree during the Sun Dance was a physical representation of the Sioux’s Earthly connection to the cosmos.
Rituals to Welcome This Season
On June 20th, bask in the glow of the Sun and soak in the passionate, fiery energy filling your being. By entering this time with presence and mindfulness, we allow ourselves to openly welcome the opportunities available to us amongst the horizon. By surrendering to the energy and power of the season, we hold the space for inner alignment and flow.
- Go outside at the moment of the Summer Solstice and breathe. Allow yourself to inhale the unity and connection felt and exhale any anger, pain, and/or fear. As you breathe in the Sun’s electric energy, feel the interconnection that unifies you with all beings in this instant.
- Dedicate time to mindfulness and movement. Hold space for a meditation or yoga practice. Allow for clearing of old energy and attract more flow and alignment into the current moment.
- Spend time in the presence of plant life, in whatever form is accessible and feels aligned. Plants radiate beautiful energy and nutrients unique to the Summer Solstice season, making it a beautiful time for gathering local plants or birthing a garden.
- Take the time to ground within, through introspection and reflection. Through simple acts of practicing gratitude, free journaling, and creating intentions for the upcoming season.
- Connect with and honor Earth’s elements of fire and water. The Sun radiates fire within each moment as our world’s oceans, lakes, and rivers soak up these vibrations. To immerse into the Sun’s gifts, watch the sunrise, create a fire of your own, or go for a swim.
Welcome this space for being and becoming with love. Mindfulness, patience, and creativity will carry you in the days ahead; trust in this beautiful process and season.
Carter & The Monfefo Team