Unlike many holidays, nearly every culture that experiences a summer celebrates The Summer Solstice. As a holiday, it isn’t based on ancient myths or ideological beliefs – it’s simply a fact of nature that the earth rotates on its diagonal axis, which creates the longest (and shortest) day.
Most cultures that experience a Summer Solstice recognize it as a sacred time, commemorated by our ancestors through fire and ceremony, and honoring the sun as it peaks and stretches the day into the longest of the year.
The Summer Solstice is a very potent time for birthing new energy, new beginnings, manifesting, and welcoming in abundance. It’s also a prime season to find a renewed sense of purpose or a (re)connection to a greater calling.
How can we harness the natural gifts of the solstice energy?
When it comes to the seasons, the Summer is the time of Yang (light/fire, masculine) energy. Long, sunny days and hot weather all reflect the Yang energy that is vibrant and full. Within the summer months, the Summer Solstice is the day of “maximum Yang”.
It marks the season of doing and accomplishing. It’s when your energy is at its peak, making it easier to finish tasks throughout your long, light-filled days. Ideas, inspiration, and flowers are blooming. There’s an overflow of radiance, vitality, and energy that you can channel in service to your own becoming.
The Summer Solstice is a time to reflect on the highest intention (or bigger meaning) of your life and where you’d like to focus your energy and refine your attention.
Because it’s an energetically charged day, setting intentions today (or tomorrow) and releasing what’s no longer serving you is an especially potent way to experience the day.
You might also wish to create powerful “I am” statements that reflect the qualities of your intentions as well as “reception” statements that open you up to receiving the energies available today. For example, “I am open to taking daily inspired action toward my life’s highest vision and receiving guidance in service to my growth.”
The Summer Solstice is also a great time for celebrating the passion in your life because the fire element is connected to the heart – your source of love, passion, and joy. You can do this by spending time with loved ones to cultivate the love shared or reconnecting to a cause or purpose you’re passionate about. These passionate acts light your internal flame which allows the fire (Yang) element to flourish, bringing loving joy to all parts of your being.
When you are resonating in a state of passion, love or joy, your connections to the world around you are more alive and vibrant. And, when you prioritize and spend time doing what most uplifts you, your entire being is nourished and so elevates – in turn elevating and uplifting others.
Because Yang energy creates action, this is also when you want to be pouring your efforts into making things happen. You will be bolstered by the natural energy of this part of the annual cycle. This is a good time to reconnect to the goals and agendas that you set earlier (perhaps at the Winter Solstice, on New Year’s for those who set resolutions, or the Equinox). How are they going? What will it take to bring them to completion? And what can you do to ensure these intentions/goals will be ready to harvest by Fall?
A gentle caution.
Without getting into the cyclical differences between men’s and women’s bodies, your human body as a whole works in harmony with the Earth’s daily, monthly, and yearly cycles and you’re healthiest when you can live in lockstep with this natural cycle. The most basic rule is – active during the day and sleeping at night. During the summer’s increase of Yang energy and sunlight, you may find yourself waking up earlier and staying up later, and enjoying a more active and social experience. While completely normal, it’s also important to invite some Yin balance into the Yang-fire energy by slowing down and creating space for self-care, stillness, and meaningful connection with others.
When you can dance the delicate balance between the outward and inward, the doing and the BE-ing, you thrive and flow with the vibrant energies of the summer while mitigating the risk of your energy or health waning in late summer or Fall.
HOW CAN YOU HONOR & CELEBRATE THE SUMMER SOLSTICE?
Here are some of my favorite ways to align with the energy of the summer solstice.
- BE in the energetic radiance of the sun.
- Dive into a fresh body of natural water like the ocean, lake, or river.
- Walk barefoot to the ground into the Earth and mindfully stroll through nature (aka forest bathing or shinrin yoku) – a practice proven to biochemically alter your physiological and energetic body.
- Gaze upon the enchanting flames of a bonfire under the moon and stars.
- Write gratitude statements for everything that you already have and everything you still desire. Part of the manifestation process is to actually feel gratitude for what you want as if you already have it.
- Honor the Summer Solstice through a morning ritual and feel yourself nourishing the light within you. This very physical change of season is a powerful time to manifest transformation with a ritual to release, cleanse, and renew. (If this piques your interest, please reach out. I’d be delighted to share some of my favorite rituals.)
However you choose to celebrate the Summer Solstice today, be sure to prioritize some time outdoors feeling the sunlight on your face as you learn to stand fully in the very powerful light of your own sacred existence.