D.E.V.A (Divine Expressions of Vital Alchemy)
Dance collaborative events :
(One who is playful & beautiful; To shine; The illuminated one;
Internal pleasure potency; Divine reality.)
Divine Expressions of Vital Alchemy
Facilitated by HazelAura G. & Debra Sawyer
“HARVEST HOME ”
Part of The LAKE STREET CHURCH Experience
“Rooted, Connected, Transformed”
607 Lake St. / Chicago Ave. Evanston
Sunday, August 3rd 2003
Hazel Aura G.
Lammas by ROWAN
Searing heat at the start of August
Sunlight shimmering in waves
off the fields of rippling golden sheaths
Sweat drips in salty streams
From laborers as they work
Gathering the 1st harvest of the grains
The smells on the slight breeze
reminiscent of the 1st loves to be baked
Threading through stalks of ripening corn
the air carries a taste of water ahead
A pound where swooping & hovering dragonflies
Draw attention to clouds
Rereflected on water the mirroring pool beckons
A deeper look to meaditate on visions
imagined on the cool surface
Creativity sparks, as the mind wanders in the sultry heat
Walking into the woods is refreshing & calm
Garnering an appreciation for the trees
How long have they grown here!
Weaving their roots under foot
All connected, a community
Sheltering life beneath their leaves
Surrounded by abundance
The fulfilled promise of spring
Gathering together on open ground
Voices braid & flow
A joyful celebration in thanks
For the things that have grown
Bright fires are lit
The low sun a brilliant hue
many feet start the dance to honor
The Barley Moon.
click for pics
To the agrarian societies of medieval Europe, early August signaled the beginning of the harvest season, the time when the first grains were harvested and many fruits and vegetables ripened, ready for picking. A quarter of the annual solar wheel had now turned since the celebration of Beltane, the time of planting crops and vegetable gardens. Those crops and gardens planted at Beltane, now poured forth their bounty proving early August a reason for celebration.
As the month of August begins, the rising and setting positions of the Sun move noticeably more southward each day. So too, the mid-day peak elevation of the solar orb begins dropping at a rate evident with the passing days. As the long, high-sun days of summer come to an end, August 1 signals the beginning of solar autumn.
Early August, usually the first, is one of the four annual cross-quarter days -- days at the midway point between the solstice and equinox. (The other cross-quarter days are known to us as Groundhog Day, May Day and Halloween but had more significant titles during pre-industrial times.)
In pagan cultures, the August cross-quarter day was the time to honor the mighty sun god and the gods of the grain by ritualistically sacrificing the first grains to ensure the continuity of life. In the British Isles, the Anglo-Saxon (Lammas), Celtic (Lughnasad), and Irish (Lughnassadh, (pronounced Lunasa) festivals honored Lugh, god of light, and John Barleycorn, personification of barley and other grains -- and the brews made from them.
There are many names by which this day is known, but the most common to the English-speaking world is Lammas. The name Lammas derives from "loaf mass" an early Anglo-Saxon feast celebrating the corn (i.e. grain) harvest through the ritual killing of the corn king. (Through the ritual re-enactment of the slaying and restoration of John Barleycorn, he became associated with beer and cider drinking.)
With the advent of Christianity in Britain, pagan rituals were officially replaced by a Mass in which the first harvested grains were baked into loaves of bread, taken to church, blessed and then offered as thanksgiving to God. Over the years as British society turned from its agricultural roots, the traditions of Lammas faded away across the kingdom. In 1843 at Morwenstow in Cornwall, England, the Reverend R. S. Hawker decided to revive the Harvest Festival, urging its celebration in schools and churches across the nation.
In many agrarian communities, the last harvested sheaf of grain was treated with special honor, for the farmers believed that with the cutting of the last sheaf, the corn spirit retreated into the soil. There in its underground refuge, the corn spirit slept throughout the Winter until Spring. In the Spring that last sheaf was returned to the fields when new seed was being sown, so that its spirit would awaken both seed and land.
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