By Dikki-Jo Mullen
Lammas is celebrated at the beginning of August, its an important high holiday in the Old Celtic Calendar, one of eight seasonal festivals in the magical year. The name might come from loaf mass, honoring loaves of bread and the life sustaining grains which are nearly ready for harvesting. The festival is also called Lughnassad, in honor of Lugh, an Irish deity who reigns in late Summer. The symbolism of Lammas is one of a harvest and time of thanksgiving to come. The first hints of the coming winter are here, the hot bright peak of summer is passing.
What have you reaped? What is ready to enjoy and harvest in your own life? What are your goals for the season ahead?
Seasonal Colors: Grey, green, gold, yellow, deep burnt orange, burgundy.
Symbols: Garden tools; grains, berries and other fruits, vegetables which ripen in August. Mugwort, yarrow, goldenrod, sunflowers.
Create: A simple meditation altar with candles, seasonal flowers and plants apropos to August. Include a favorite bread and fruit juice or tea. Light the candles, say the blessing below, enjoy a feast as you begin a new cycle of luck and prosperity.
Invocation of Lammas
I breathe in and become the life of the universe,
And exhale all that no longer serves me, abandoning any anger or
Resentment or sorrow over the illusion of loss.
Every seed, animal and every being is a record reflecting back to
Ancient times and looking forward to all of the tomorrows that will ever
Be. I am part of that eternal whole.
Here are two easy and delicious recipes for making seasonal breads to enjoy at Lammas or Loaf -mass.
These recipes are reprinted courtesy of the web page of The Witches’ Almanac.
Golden Honey Cornbread
August corn fields are bursting with golden ears to eat fresh. Corn is also one of the grains that sustain us through all the seasons. This bread, eaten warm with herb or honey butter adds a satisfying element to any meal.
1 cup all purpose flour
1 cup yellow cornmeal
1/4 cup white sugar
3 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 cup heavy cream
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1/4 cup honey
1 egg slightly beaten
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Grease a 9 inch round cake pan (or 9×9 square) In a large bowl combine flour, cornmeal, sugar and baking powder. In medium bowl lightly beat egg and add cream, honey and oil stirring lightly to combine. Make a well in center of dry ingredients and pour liquid mixture in to well. Stir to combine, do not beat. Pour into prepared baking pan. Bake 20 to 25 minutes or until pick inserted into the center comes out clean. Cool slightly in pan before cutting into serving size pieces.
Bread for Lammas
Whole Wheat Cottage Bread
This recipe yields a nice loaf without. This bread can be baked in a loaf pan or a round casserole dish. Add toasted sunflower seeds or raisons for a different flavor. Serve warm with lots of butter and jam.
2 tablespoons honey
1/2 cup warm water
1 1/2 tablespoon dry yeast
3 3/4 cups whole wheat flour (or whole wheat and white flour combined to equal 3 3/4 cups)
1 teaspoon salt
1 1/4 cups warm water
Grease loaf pan. Combine honey and 1/2 cup warm water. Mix in yeast and let stand a couple of minutes or until the mixture looks foamy . In a large bowl combine flour, salt and yeast mixture together. Slowly add 1 1/4 cups of warm water until the dough is holding together but sticky. Put dough in prepared loaf pan. Let rise about 45 minutes. Bake 50 minutes at 400 degrees. Remove from baking pan and place on rack.
It is said that if all of the worlds money (the multiple billions and trillions out there) would be equally divided among all human beings on the entire planet, then each man, woman and child would have 8 million dollars! Focus on reaching out to claim your abundance, knowing that all that you will ever need is right here, as a Lammas affirmation.