The Summer Solstice is a beautiful day to pause and soak in the abundant, warm and bright energy of the summer. Take time to connect more deeply with yourself, and the world around you. Below I will share with you a short ceremony you can do in your own time to honour and celebrate reaching this halfway point in the year. First thing in the morning or last thing at night are good times to do this and I would set yourself aside 40 - 60 minutes.
You will need
Rosemary and Mint leaves (Preferably fresh).
A basin or bucket to fill with warm water so you can soak your feet.
A steel tin or bowl for burning paper in (or over a clear kitchen sink is also okay).
Incense or some sort of smudge smoke stick.
Matches or a lighter.
A relaxing candle (you can light as many as you like).
Paper and pen for your personal refections, thoughts and feelings.
A mat or somewhere to lie down.
A chair or bed or couch to sit down.
A warm cup of your favourite tea or hot chocolate.
Set up your space and all you need somewhere you won't be disturbed.
Boil the kettle to make your tea and to fill your bucket with water.
Place the herbs into the basin and add more warm water or cool water as you feel.
Light your candle and incense
You can have your phone, tablet or laptop open to read from here, to set a timer and to listen to music but otherwise turn it to silent or do not disturb mode.
Begin by sipping on your tea and take your time to relax, you can then choose to sit on your yoga mat or lie down, play some calming music or listen to a guided meditation such as this one below. This will take about 15 minutes but if you are listening to your own music set a timer now for 15 minutes.
After this sit down on a chair or by your bedside, picking up your tea to drink, pen and paper and placing your feet into the basin of warm water. You can play some relaxing music as you do this clicking here
Keep your feet soaking in the water and on your paper, start to write down any emotions or feelings that came up for you during the 15 minutes, maybe it was frustration or sadness or peace. Write the words on the paper.
Now start to think about the last six months that have gone by and write down anything prominent that comes to your mind and how it makes you feel. First think of the world overall and then turn your attention to your personal life. You can stick with just words or elaborate on this if you like.
The Summer Solstice is also a time for letting go. Write down anything you would like to let go of. Things that no longer serve you. Again maybe these are words or names or thoughts.
Put what you have written to one side or tear the pages if you were writing in a notebook.
Now set some intentions for the next six months, writing down on a new page some things you would like to focus on, you can be as detailed as you want to be.
They could be intentions such as being kinder to yourself or maybe spending more time with certain people in your life, write down the things you will do to be kinder to yourself or where and when you will make more time for certain people. The focus could also be on something like a new job or saving to buy a house, write down how you see this. What type of job would you like or what does the house you dream of look like.
When you are finished writing, take your feet out of the basin and dry them with your towel, paying attention to how they feel.
Take the first batch of notes you wrote over to the tin bowl or the sink and light them with a match or lighter. Watch as the paper burns in flames and falls to ashes. Letting go of the past 6 months. The past is gone and as the paper burns try to let the light release any tension or stress you have been holding onto.
Fold up your notes with all your intentions for the next six months and place them in your diary or bedside table or stick them up somewhere you can see them everyday to be reminded of them.
Thank yourself for taking the time to honour the light within you during the Summer Solstice. You can wrap yourself in a blanket or jumper and sit or lie for another few minutes to take stock and let the ceremony settle before you finish.
Namaste :) Do let me know how you get on! You can take some pictures of your set up to send me if you like or tag me on @YogawithOrlaith online. I look forward to seeing you again in class.