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A Time of Harvesting and Reflection

Lammas; the first of the harvest festivals. I started writing this blog yesterday morning thinking about how gathering in gives us an opportunity for reflection. What are we harvesting? Gathering in? What have we grown? Remembering for anything to grow we need to nurture and nourish, yet also notice what needs clearing.


I decided to take this opportunity to reflect back on July. Time is often spent, wondering what have we done, where has time gone. I’ve had a trickly July emotionally. I see how I sometimes fall into the trap of doom scrolling on social media and believing that everyone is having a wonderful time, doing fabulous things, going places. The reality is that social media is but a snippet. Few show the reality of life. The down days, the sadness, we tend to chose what we post. Filtering our life in so many ways. The filter on the phone, the app, to make it seem even brighter and shinier. Filtering the good days from the bad days. The good pictures from the poor pictures.


At the end of July as we approach Lammas the energy begins to shift and change. I felt the shift as we moved from Sun in Cancer to Leo. The gentle change in the air, noticing a new scent carried upon the breeze as I stepped out in the mornings. Autumn gently beginning to nuzzle in. Rowan berries ripening, tinges of red appearing on Hawthorn berries. A reminder of the ever changing seasons and cycles. The turning of the wheel.


As we begin the gathering in, the harvesting, I’m also reminded of Menopause. The impact of the change, the stripping back, the surfacing, re-surfacing. Who am I? What am I? I think much of that has been what’s happening for me. A friend and I recently spoke about the importance of a time of solitude at Menopause. This led is into realising the need for taking time of solitude, time out at important times of transition in our life. The opportunity to reflect, to shed, to reshape, to emerge re-birthed. Reflection gives time for re surfacing, re-membering.


My deep connection with plants has been re-surfacing. My love of wild flowers began as a child. Saving pocket money, I began to buy The Jarrold Wild Flower Series of books. I took them on walks with me and on holidays. Over the years photos began to be taken. Conversations with flowers had started. Unfortunately, the books have been lost along the way, I moved several times between the ages of 18 and 24 hoping from bedsit to bedsit. Space was limited. My reflections took me to looking to see if the books are still available, just seeing the book covers on the screen was a portal of time travel! I’ve seen how the plants have been whispering to me in recently years, how their voices have become louder. They have been helped along the way. A dear friend in Sweden, an herbalist, knew it and encouraged me. One of my all-time favourite courses has to be Conversations with Plants with Carol Day in 2021.


Mugwort has been a friend of mine for several years now. I’ve gathered her in, sung lullabies to her and she has been dried for dream pillows and smoke cleansing blends. This year she was asking to be an oil. I’ve created oils with St John’s Wort and Calendula flowers, but this was new. Thanks to a herbal day with Bel, Yorkshire Herbalist at the beginning of July I went home and at July’s Full Moon made some. I shared the Mugwort oil with friends who are always willing and happy to try out my creations. One is having a tricky time at the moment with peri-menopause and has found massaging her womb and abdominal area with the oil so soothing. I felt filled with joy. I’d listened to Mugwort, gathered and created at Full Moon. As I remember this, I remember the July Full Moon being a time of great joy and happiness spending time gathering and creating dyes, tinctures and oils. Voice messaging a friend and telling her how happy I was. The simplicity of gathering under the morning sun, once the dew had dried, listening to the plants and hearing how they wished to be with me.


Plants are once more a regular part of my daily life. Clients are often greeted with flowers and greenery in pots around my therapy space. In the morning before a client arrives, I take a Ta Tydor (a walk taking in the signs) listening and watching. One morning the dog roses called out, I knew from both mine and the client’s preparation that heart medicine was needed. Just three were gathered and placed on heart centre. The shift in energy was incredibly beautiful.


At this August Full Lammas Moon, I invite you to take time for reflection. A time when we celebrate the Grain Mother, the Mother Goddess, the Mother Moon. A time of giving thanks to Mother Earth and her abundance. The fields turning golden, shimmering in the Full Moon light ready for harvesting, for corn dollies to be created filled with thanks, blessings and wishes. Although at the moment here in Yorkshire, there’s not much hay cutting happening, we have had days of rain, the river is full and fast, and the grass is sodden.


Harvesting the fruits of our labours not only in our gardens or fields but the whole of our life. A time to reflect, looking back at the seeds we planted in Spring, at Imbolc. A time when we sowed our seeds of intentions, our hopes, dreams and desires. We can pause, take a deep dive inwards. Which seeds of our own inner landscape have we nourished and nurtured? Those that have come to fruition and those that have fallen by the wayside.


I invite you today, under this Full Lammas Moon to take time out to reflect, to have a time of contemplation. Noticing the growth within you and around you. Noticing the seeds that haven’t grown, are they still dormant within awaiting their time to grow and flourish? Are these seeds of dreams to be envisioned fully and wholly; or are they no longer your heart’s desire? Are they to be released at this Full Moon creating space. Preparing you for the coming season of turning inwards and the Winter months for new dreams to be incubated. Lammas is traditionally a time of bread making. The repetitive kneading of dough, giving time to sink into a meditative contemplative space.


However, you decide to take time for your own Full Lammas Moon reflections I invite you to be gentle with yourself.; to give room to all of your seeds and dreams. The ones flourishing, the ones awaiting their time and the ones for whom time has changed and are to be no more.

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