Lammas or Lugnasadh- Is one better?
The First Harvest on the Wheel of the Year is just around the corner. The beginning of August marks the beginning of the harvest season and the first of three harvest related sabbats for many a pagan. I have hear most commonly Lammas and Lughnasadh used for the names of this sabbat. I don’t think one is more correct than the other, I think it all depends on your intentions, and your own prefernece. I myself use both. Lughnasadh is the Irish Celtic name for not only this sabbat but it is connected directly to the month of August as well. There are various spelling of the name in Irish, Scottish, Manx and so on. The main take away point for using Lughnasadh is that the day is celebrate in ways similar to how the Celts celebrated the day.
For the Irish Celts, this day was a day celebrating warrior strength but also celebrating Motherhood, as it is said that the day was begun by the god Lugh himself, in honor of his foster mother, Tailtiu. He held a great funerary feast in her honor where games of strength were put on and celebrated. Tailtiu died of exhaustion after tilling the plains of Ireland to be ready for agricultural use, a grain. crop connection if ever there was one.
That this was the beginning of the harvest season was also of import, the first grains are ready to be harvested at this time. For many, this is the focus of this sabbat, Bread, the product of harvest grains, the sustainer of life through long winter months to come, now is the time to harvest and prepare the grain to sustain the community through the winter. This aspect became commonly known as Loaf mass or feast of bread. While there are some Christian connections to this day, these connections originated in Anglo Saxon tribes and are a clear carry over of earlier traditions being embraced.
Whatever you focus your First Harvest on, this was and still is a time of hand fastings and marriages, a vestige of Trial marriages performed at this time of year when villages would come together for the first harvest of the season. Much of the grand displays, offerings, trading and celebrating of these times gone by has become what we commonly know as county fairs and family reunions. This was the time of year for folks to come togehter from afar and share, meet and comingle together under a banner of peace and good will in preparation for the hard work of the harvesting to be done for winter survival.
So call it what you want, focus how you wish on this first harvest of the Wheel of the Year- find a way to connect with where you are in your life, this year, this cycle around the year- what have you harvested or what are you ready to harvest within yourself to help you meet your goals? Something to ponder on as we live in our modern world…. You sowed some seed in the spring, now that the earth is burgeoning with life, what are you harvesting?
Merry Meet! I am first and foremost a writer. When I am writing I am in my element! Much of what I write about, and do in my life is centered around a pagan spiritual base. I have been studying various paths and topics, working with energies, deities, and the elements for 15 years plus. I am the High Priestess of Spiral Grove an eclectic study coven. I say I was given this coven as a gift because that is what it truly is. Spiral Grove would not be what it is without the members who make it whole.