In the Pagan Celtic year, there are four major Sabbats or harvest festivals and four lesser Sabbats, also known as solar festivals. Litha is one of the lesser Sabbats and is also known as Summer Solstice, Midsummer, Gathering Day and Vestalia.
Typically celebrated on June 21st, Litha is the longest day of the year and a time when the sun reaches its apex in the sky. It is considered the mid-point of summer, which begins with Beltane on May 1st and ends with Lughnasadh on August 1st. In many Pagan traditions Litha is seen as the time when the Oak King, who represents the waxing year, is triumphed over by the Holly King who represents the waning year. The two are actually one God, the Horned God, but the Holly King is seen as the growing youth while the Oak King is seen as the wise and mature man.
The Goddess is also celebrated at Litha by many Pagan traditions. She is seen as the woman heavy with child, who will give birth to the God at Yule. She is also seen as the bounty of coming harvests, of protection and sustenance. The ancient Romans saw this time as sacred to the goddess Juno who was the wife of Jupiter, the goddess of women and children and also the patroness of marriage. Seeing that the month of June is named after her it’s no wonder that marriages are so popular during this month.
For contemporary Pagans, Litha is a time of brightness, purification and healing. It is a time to meditate on the aspects of light and dark both within us and in the world around us. Litha is also a time of celebrating outdoors and enjoying the warmth of the sun and the beauty of nature. Rituals and celebrations that involve bonfires, music and handfasting are common during this time.
Litha is considered a time to harvest your medicinal and spiritual herbs and is also considered to be one of the best times to perform spells and magickal work that foster love, prosperity and healing. It can also be a time for meditating on the balance between light and darkness both within yourself and in the world around you.
It’s that time of the year again, so I decided to upload Zounds, not sure why, just fancied it for some reason.
Thanks to Jon From Bromley for the lend of this tape of a Zounds gig recorded on a small tour that the band performed on with support from Cheap And Nasty. Supposedly a whole heap of Brougham Road residents turned up for this gig which must have been nice for the band!
Thanks also to Jen Wilson for the photographs of Zounds, Null And Void and The Mob performing in Belgium (at different times – but in the same venue by the look of the hall decor).
It is not Holland but it is near enough.
It is worth noting in the photographs from Jen’s collection, that Tim, the drummer pictured with The Mob also played bass guitar for Zounds at the performance uploaded on this site today. Josef Porter is pictured drumming for Null And Void and of course he would have performed drumming duties with Zounds and later on The Mob.
Steve and Lawrence of Zounds just performed for Zounds!