With summer officially upon us, I couldn't help but notice a handful of my friends and followers wishing people a Happy Litha/Summer Solstice. Familiar with some of the basic practices due to my time living in Europe when I was younger and having many friends who are of the ancient beliefs, I had posted on my Facebook “I would like to wish my followers a happy Summer Solstice, if you celebrate. What Midsummer art or festivities do you enjoy? Go ahead and share!” At that same moment I found myself wondering if I could share a look at what others around the world do for their Midsummer celebrations.
|'Kupala Night' by lemon66|
Lemon66.deviantart.com (Poland) has a wonderful photo of a midsummer celebration that he took in 2011 for Kupala Night which is celebrated in the Ukraine, Belarus, Poland and Russia. It originally started off as a pagan fertility rite which later was accepted into the Orthodox Christian calendar. Due to the fact that some of the blending of the ancient rites and Slavic religious belief, the use of water during the celebration was connected with fertility and ritual purification.
|'Wizard of Midsummer Night' by Tiania|
Tiaina.deviantart.com (Finland) proudly shows off her pyre from 2008 for her Midsummer celebration. Looking into it, I discovered that it is very common to have a bonfire burning at lakesides and by the sea along with having 2 young birch trees on either side of the front door of the home to welcome visitors. For them, the celebration is named after the god Ukko who was the god of the sky, weather, harvest and thunder.
Pagan-live-style.deviantart.com (Netherlands) has a wonderful collection of photos from 2011 of a Midsummer festival that was near the village of Aolphen a/d Rijn in the Netherlands. He ends up explaining to his viewers how the Summer Solstice is celebrated in various parts of the world in the description of the photos.
|'MZF 2011 21' by pagan-live-style|
So with that said, I offer you this chance to tell me what you do to celebrate Midsummer and the Summer Solstice (however you know it as since depending on your location, it's called by different names). Is there any art that you find represents the holiday? Feel free to let me know since for me, this is a wonderful way of being inspired for future pieces.
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