The spiritual meaning of the summer solstice is tied to warmth, fertility, and harvest. Celebrate energetically!
The summer solstice usually falls on June 21st each year. It’s the longest day of the year (in the Northern Hemisphere), and marks the official beginning of summer. Many traditions all over the world celebrate the summer solstice as a special day for fertility, sensuality, and the bounty of the harvest. In other words, it’s a good day for a party.
[Read: “Have a ‘Wine and Chi’ Party.”]
Spiritually, summer is the season of the year where we are most connected to our bodies and the natural world. Flowers are blooming and fruits and vegetables are ripe for the harvest. There is an abundance of food, energy, and light—so much so that some of us have a harder time sleeping around this time. We are receiving the heat and nourishment of the sun, which many of us have been craving since the darker, colder seasons of the year.
Many northern countries are especially enamored of this festival when the winter nights are very long, and the summer nights extremely short. Sweden is especially known for its midsummer festivities, which include wearing flower wreaths and dancing around a maypole. Iceland holds a three-day Midnight Sun festival with music and bonfires.
Energetically, the summer season is extroverted and physical in nature. While the darker seasons are a good time to connect with spirit in terms of our intuitive abilities and what’s on the “other side,” the bright half of the year is the time to commune with physical nature, the plant and animal spirits, and what’s on “this side.” It’s also a time for honoring and connecting to our bodies through movement, enjoying local foods that are in season, and spending time with other bodies (for some, in a sexual or sensual way!).
Harvest Winter Solstice Goals
It is harvest time, a time of completion in the Wheel of the Year. At midsummer, consider the work you have been doing over the course of the last year, especially since the winter solstice, which is a time for setting intentions. Look at the actions you have been doing and whether or not they have been in alignment with your goals. Celebrate your wins and acknowledge your losses. This is a time to let go of what’s no longer serving you.
The months following the summer solstice are meant to be a time of slowing down and enjoying the fruits of your harvest. Many people take time off in the summer, and that’s natural for the rhythm of the year. Summers are meant to be enjoyed, and while the sun can give us some extra energy in some ways, the excess heat can also make it easy for us to do too much. We can get overheated and irritated. During this time, we should be focusing on enjoying and maintaining the work that we did in the dark part of the year. When the fall returns, it will be time to begin again, to set new intentions, to return to our internal work. Now is the time to enjoy our bodies, our relationships, and the natural world.
Honor the Spiritual Meaning of the Summer Solstice
Here are some things you could do to mark the solstice this year:
- Spend time in nature: go for a hike or visit a local botanical garden to enjoy the flower displays.
- Go to the beach, which balances the elements of sun and water.
- Have a bonfire (in a safe place) with your community or family.
- Rest, especially in the very hot parts of the afternoon.
- Write down your wins from this year and celebrate yourself—have a special dinner or even a party.
- Spend time with water, including cooling baths, sprinklers, water parks, or wherever you can access it.
- Eat local fruits and vegetables that are ripe and in season, ideally from a farmer’s market.
- Make love.
Enjoy the fruits of the season and celebrate the spiritual side of midsummer!
Go deeper into the spiritual meaning of the summer solstice with a “Guided Summer Solstice Meditation.”