This dance is an embodiment of the the Summer Solstice in honor of the Goddess, Litha and the Egyptian New Year. On the Wheel of the Year, the Summer Solstice is the turning point, the point at which we begin to head into the darker half of the year. After the solstice, the days will grow shorter and the nights longer until Midwinter.

During midsummers past, the ancient Romans celebrated the hearth goddess Vesta and her own festival, Vestalia. The ancient Egyptians welcomed the renewal of the land as the star of Sirius rose above the horizon, emerging once more from the underworld and heralding the much-anticipated annual flooding of the Nile. At the highest point in their villages, the Scandinavians mimicked the retreat of the sun by setting large wheels on fire and rolling down hills into bodies of water. 

Although Midsummer is not one of the Celtic fire festivals, fire is an important component of the holiday, and hilltop bonfires on Midsummer’s Eve are common even in modern celebrations. These sacred fires were thought to help the Sun reach its highest point as it teetered on the turn of the celestial wheel. Although the holidays of Midsummer and Beltane share the pagan traditions of may-pole dancing, handfasting, flower crowns, fertility rites, and faerires, Midsummer has a distinct farewell feeling to its celebrations. The growth cycle has almost completed, and the harvest is just around the corner. There is a bit of an urgency during Midsummer to relish that which what will soon retreat – to enjoy the long, languid days that will give way to endless hours of back-breaking work and the early arrival of nightfall. With winter preparations imminent, Midsummer stirs up a bit of carpe diem amongst young and old alike.

During this time, we honor the Sun at its peak; we ask for healing, illumination, and one last joyful summer romp before dipping into darkness.

The song I have chosen is called Earth Women Dub by Illuminertia off of his latest album  – Arcturian Dream which features incredible vocals by women who are personal friends of mine and formed a local choir here in Portland known as Earth Women founded by Taffy Urban AKA Chakaara Bliss and Ayla Realta. You can find Earth Women on instagram. I absolutely love what they are doing. Props to my lady Emily Ra for merging with their project and seeing to it that this track was recorded with her partner Eric of Illuminertia. You can really feel the love of the local community in this track!

Linik to track: