I wanted to celebrate the First Harvest as Lughnasadh on August 1st… but my schedule got crazy and it just didn’t happen. Also, I just didn’t feel it. I mean, I do have Scottish blood (and Welsh, and English… pretty much the whole British Isles)… but that doesn’t make me Celtic.
I have some Norwegian in there too (uff da!), but that doesn’t make me Norse. Someone suggested that I might even have some Native American in me because of some genetics stuff that I’m doubtful about, but even if that were true, I wasn’t raised in that culture. Don’t get me wrong, I believe in learning about and appreciating one’s ancestry. I just don’t think it gives me a pass to say, “Oh yes, the blood of the Celts runs through me, thats why I’m sooooo much more of a Druid than so-and-so…”
I, on the other hand, was born in California… I’ve lived in the Bay Area my whole life. My whole life I’ve eaten food grown in the soil here, climbed its trees, fished in its deltas, breathed in its salty-sea air, and danced in its fog at sunset. For better or worse, its part of me. If I’m “native” anything, it’s this.
I decided to celebrate my way. For one, I waited until it felt right instead of a calendar date – even though its been super warm lately, I could taste a hint of autumn. I improvised an altar as best I could. The simple offering I came up with was some bread with butter and honey (yum!), and me and the spirits split a beer. 🙂
I sat for awhile, thinking about life and death, about how nothing thrives without loss and sacrifice. I sang for awhile, meditated a little, recited a few poems and prayers. I praised the setting sun, and the earth that will soon be sleeping. I thanked the seasons themselves, and the forces behind them whose names I don’t know. I also thanked the Bee Queen for her recent aid in my meditations. It was nice to just be still and grateful for awhile, to just be. When I was ready, I wished for the spirits to accept my thanks, and continue to guard and guide me and mine in the coming darkness. I left the offerings out for a bit and then took them outside so the birds and squirrels and such could take them to their destinations.
I am fed, healthy, sheltered, safe, loved, and very grateful. I am content, both with the giving and the taking.
Unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains just a single grain; but if it dies, it bears much fruit.
~ John 12:24