Let’s take a look at the solstices (not an easy word to say as a plural, way too many s’s)
These are very important to the astronomical calendar as they mark the changing of the seasons and are a part of the earth’s orbit around the sun.
We have two solstices a year, a summer one and a winter one. The summer solstice occurs around the 21st June in the Northern hemisphere and is the longest period of sunlight in a day, often called Midsummer or Litha in the pagan world. The winter solstice is around 21st December in the Northern hemisphere and is the shortest period of sunlight in a day, known as Yule. The dates can vary by a day or two either way.
On the summer solstice the sun reaches its highest point of the year and at the winter solstice the sun at midday is at the lowest point of the year. The earth is actually tilted towards the sun during the summer solstice (in the Northern hemisphere) which results in more sunshine and warmer weather. The sun is either farthest north or south from the earth’s equator. The term solstice refers to either of the two points of greatest deviation of the sun’s apparent annual path, from the celestial equator. Looking at the summer solstice, the North Pole is tilted about 23.4 degrees towards the sun, this causes the sun’s rays to shift northwards by the same amount, the vertical midday rays are directly above the Tropic of Cancer. In the Southern hemisphere the sun’s vertical rays are at their southernmost position over the Tropic of Capricorn. Roll on to the winter solstice and the South Pole is inclined about 23.4 degrees towards the sun instead.
If you happened to be in the area north of the Artic circle on the summer solstice you would get sunlight for a full 24 hours, if you were south of the Antarctic circle at that time you would be in complete darkness for a full day. Reversed of course at the winter solstice.
For the summer solstice you could work magic for:
Movement of all sorts
Reaching your goals
Mankind has been worshipping the sun since he saw the first sunrise…probably, because although I am not young, I really am not old enough to remember that particular event.
The sun was, and still is a source of light, power, energy and warmth. It was and is a source of life. You need the sunlight to grow the crops to feed the people. And when the sun was particularly hot I suspect that many people wanted to know what they had done to make the sun so angry it would burn their skin…
Across the globe cultures honoured sun deities and prayed that the sun would come up and present itself each day. From the Babylonians to the Native Americans and everywhere else in between.
The sun has an ability to see everything, this would have given it great power (and still does) and may also be why we see so many connections throughout myths and legends between the sun and the image of an eye.
The gods of the skies and the heavens, those that ruled the sun were worshipped and it seems often had chariots they rode across the sky. The Egyptian sun god, Ra had a chariot that he drove across the heavens and the Greek god Helios was honoured by sending a horse drawn chariot off the top of a cliff and into the sea (poor horses).
The ancient cultures of the Aztecs and Mayans worshipped celestial bodies and even created detailed calendars based on the movements. The Incans had a festival called Inti Raymi that has been suggested was celebrated to anchor the sun to stop it from moving further north, to keep the days longer and prevent them from shortening. Some cultures credited the sun as the creator of all things, giving birth to the stars. Early Persians from the cult of Mithra included sun worship and honouring in many of their rituals and ceremonies.
Archaeologists have uncovered a whole host of ancient structures, temples and buildings that seem to have been built to align with celestial bodies suggesting that the builders worshipped the sun, the moon and the stars.
During the early 17th Century there was a bit of a scientific argument going on about the place of the sun in the universe. The Church at the time believed that the earth was at the centre of the universe (because of man living on it) and therefore the universe must revolve around the earth. One of the key scientists of the day, Galileo was condemned for his belief that this was incorrect…science won out of course…eventually.
There are many ancient sacred sites and structures that seem to have been built wholly or in part to worship the Sun or Sun gods
Solar water Set out a jar or dish of water during an eclipse and let it soak up the energy. Then you can bottle it and use it at a later date. It can be used to water your plants that need a bit of a boost, to sprinkle on your spell work to boost the energy, drink a sip when you need an energy lift or before you work magic. Add it to your baking or cooking to send in the magic or pop a bit into your ritual bathwater.
Sunrise/midday/sunset – set it out during the phase of the sun you want to capture. Bottle it and use at a later date for the intent that corresponds to the phase you used to charge it under.
Solar water – for general purpose sun water, set out a dish or jar of water first thing in the morning and allow it to soak up the energy from the sun throughout the day. Take it in at sunset.
Obviously make sure your jar or dish of water is covered so that you don’t end up with fly water…yuck!
The sun covers all yellow and solar looking herbs and plants, herbal medicines that cover heart problems, bringing strength to the body, resistance poison, bringing warmth to the system, evergreens with a strong life force and all herbs and plants that are linked to eyesight. Any plant life that restores energy, vitality and boosts the immune system. Stimulants and those that clear the lungs and respiratory tract. And all plants that relieve pain or inflammation were believed to be ruled by the sun as well. Makes sense to me!
Here are some plants ruled by the sun, to get you started:
Angelica - Protection, healing, exorcism, divination, prosperity, luck, hex breaking, courage.
Also ruled by Venus and the element of fire so you get a double whammy of sunshine energy.
Ash - Protection, prosperity, dispels negativity, improves health, sea magic, dreams, love, intuition.
Also ruled by Neptune and both a fire and water element plant.
Bay - Protection, purification, strength, power, healing, creativity, spirituality, psychic powers.
With the element of fire, it is a hot one!
Benzoin – Prosperity, purification. Element – air.
Bergamot (orange) - Money, uplifting, success, Sun magic, banishing, purification. Also ruled by Mercury and the element of air.
Buttercup - Abundance, ancient wisdom, divination, protection, psychic abilities. Element – fire.
Calamus - Money, protection, healing, luck. Also ruled by the Moon and the element of water so a gentle Sun energy with this one.
Carnation - Healing, strength, protection, release, courage. Element – fire.
Cedar - Purification, money, protection, Goddess. Also ruled by Jupiter and the element of fire.
Celandine - Happiness, protection, release, escape, legal matters. Element – fire.
Chamomile - Sleep, dreams, love, calm, money, relaxation, purification, balancing. Element – water.
Chrysanthemum - Longevity, spirituality, protection. Element – fire.
Copal - Purification, love, protection. Also ruled by Jupiter and the element of fire.
Eucalyptus - Moon magic, sun magic, divination, dreams, healing, purification. Also ruled by the Moon and both the elements of water and air.
Frankincense - Purification, spirituality, relaxation, focus, love, abundance. Element – fire.
Hazel - Fertility, wishes, love, protection, luck, wisdom, divination, healing, inspiration, prosperity. Element – air.
Heliotrope - Dreams, spirituality, exorcism, protection, forgiveness, abundance. Element – fire.
Juniper - Love, exorcism, healing, protection, justice, stolen items, purification, psychic powers, clarity. Also ruled by Jupiter, the Moon and the element of fire.
Lovage – Protection, love. Also ruled by the Moon and the element of fire.
Mace - Purification, consecration, psychic powers. Also ruled by Mercury and the element of air.
Marigold - Psychic powers, dreams, protection, luck, happiness, gossip. Element – fire.
Mistletoe - Fertility, protection, love, health, dreams. Element – air.
Morning Glory - Divination, astral travel, psychic powers. Also ruled by Neptune and the element of air.
Myrrh - Protection, purification, healing, Crone, Underworld, courage. Also ruled by Mars and the element of water.
Oak - Healing, health, protection, money, fertility, luck, strength, vitality, power. Also ruled by Jupiter, Mars and the elements of fire and water.
Peony - Exorcism, protection, luck, happiness, blessings. Element – fire.
Rowan - Psychic powers, power, success, protection, love, spirituality, faeries, divination, healing, inspiration. Also ruled by Mercury and the element of fire.
Rue - Protection, health, healing, purification, balance, clarity, anxiety, hex breaking. Also ruled by Mars and the element of fire.
St John’s Wort - Protection, health, strength, love, divination, happiness, abundance, truth. Element – fire.
Sunflower - Wishes, fertility, truth, integrity, luck, protection, loyalty, happiness. Element – fire.
Witch hazel - Protection, divining, balance, grief. Also ruled by Saturn and the element of fire.
Foods ruled by the sun
As with magical herbs being ruled by planets, foods also have associations with celestial bodies. Here are some that are ruled by the sun. Use them in magical workings; nuts and seeds lend themselves very well to this – add to spell pouches or witch bottles for instance. Or meals can be prepared in honour of sun energy or solar gods and eaten.
Cashew – Prosperity, energy. Element fire and earth.
Cinnamon - Success, healing, power, psychic powers, protection, love, focus, lust, spirituality, changes. Element – fire.
Corn - Abundance, luck, prosperity, offerings, fertility. Element fire and earth.
Dates - Spirituality, death & rebirth, offerings. Element – air.
Grapefruit - Happiness, spirit work, purification, depression, energy. Also ruled by Jupiter and the elements of fire and water.
Hazelnut - Protection, psychic powers, wisdom, fertility, Faerie, Healing. Also ruled by Mercury and the element of air.
Kumquat – Sun energy, luck, money. Element – air.
Lime - Purification, love, healing, protection, energy. Element – fire.
Olives - Spirituality, integrity, passion, fertility, healing, peace, protection, luck. Element fire and air.
Orange - Love, happiness, uplifting, generosity, purification, clarity, energy, fidelity. Element – fire.
Pineapple - Chastity, protection, luck, prosperity, healing. Element – fire.
Rice - Prosperity, fertility, protection, rain, grounding, stability. Element air and earth.
Rosemary - Protection, love, lust, mental powers, exorcism, purification, healing, sleep. Element – fire.
Saffron - Happiness, energy, psychic powers, healing, fertility. Element – fire.
Sesame - Prosperity, protection, energy, strength, secrets. Element fire and earth.
Tea - Meditation, courage, strength, prosperity. Element – fire.
Walnut - Wishes, mental powers, clarity, fertility. Element – fire.
Wine (red) - Spirituality, offerings, happiness, love. Element fire and earth.
Crystals associated with the sun
Sunstone – This stone does what it says on the tin: Energy, potential, leadership, power, freedom, consciousness, openness, benevolence, warmth, strength, clarity, blessings, joy, happiness, nurture, good nature, abundance, independence, inspiration, fame, balance, prosperity, luck, enthusiasm, vitality, opportunities, de-stress and dispels negative energy and fear.
Citrine – Positive energy, joy, success, wealth, abundance, manifestation, will, perseverance, creativity, imagination, clarity, meditation, strength, goals, inspiration and warmth.
Clear Quartz – Amplifying, manifesting, healing, activation, enlightenment, consciousness, communication, clarity, clearing blockages, energy flow, positive energy and pretty much anything else, clear quartz is a good all-round crystal that can be ‘programmed’ with any intent.
Goldstone – Ambition, drive, confidence, dreams, goals, joy, inner light, protection, warrior energy, grounding, healing, balance, harmony, creativity, sensuality, inspiration, reflects negative energy, consciousness and connection with the divine.
Golden topaz – Influence, generosity, strength, luxury, true love, fidelity, friendship, courage, wisdom, success, healing, soothing, stimulation, recharging, energy, joy, abundance, will, manifestation, creativity, intention, connection to the divine, faith, optimism, confidence, overcoming limitations and attraction.
Heliodor – Warmth, power, consciousness, wellbeing, knowledge, learning, leadership, decisions, assertiveness, confidence, strength, benevolence, power, hope, calms the nerves, relief, stability, optimism, honesty, balance, determination, drive, enthusiasm, finances, happiness, memory and protection against negative energy.
Sulfur – Vitality, energy, protection, purification, detoxing, un-hexing, dispels negative energy, healing and solar plexus work.
Zircon – Spirituality, balance, healing, self-love, love, clarity, grounding, energy, organisation, sexuality, dispel depression, protection, success and to increase alertness.
Gold (yep I know technically it is a metal and not a crystal) – Definitely a stone of the sun. Power, enhancing magic, boosting power, directing energy, illumination, success, knowledge, learning, responsibility, self-confidence, calming, dispel negative energy, transformation and amplifying.
Ruby – Encouragement, energy, passion, clearing the darkness, creativity, awareness, manifestation, stability, wealth, concentration, clarity, wisdom, focus, motivation, productivity, protection against negative energy and psychic attack, courage, joy, leadership, spirituality and power.
Rutilated quartz – Clarity, duality, perspective, antidepressant, healing, emotions, spirituality, cleansing, recharging, purification, energy, meditation, dispels negative energy, clarity, intention, direction and angel work.
Garnet – Energy, grounding, connection, clearing blockages, joy, vitality, love, relationships, strength, direction, progress, consciousness, actions, attraction, protection, healing and positive energy.
Pyrite – Wealth, luck, strength, motivation, connection, wisdom, action, aspirations, meditation, guidance, protection, self-confidence, prosperity, healing, intention, focus, gratitude and abundance.
Tiger’s Eye – This stone combines both sun and earth energy and was used to transmit power to the sun god Ra. Success, energy, power, spirituality, attraction, luck, money, wealth, truth, courage, strength, passion, vitality, clarity, joy, grounding, understanding, balance, insight, will, centring, information, divination and protection.
Topaz – Also said to be filled with the energy of the sun god Ra. Clarity, protection, strength, power, invisibility, spirituality, intelligence, creativity, wisdom, wealth, love, success, understanding, compassion, kindness, empathy, communication, abundance, planning, anti-depression, emotions and to help sleep.
Amber – Manifestation, energy, conductivity, luck, life, beauty, power, desires, clarity, wisdom, balance, purification, protection, psychic shielding, healing, calm, patience, love, sensuality, abundance, vitality, joy, soothing, strength and calming.
Diamond – Cleansing, removing obstacles, self-respect, love, emotions, relationships, abundance, balance, clarity, anti-jealousy, amplifying, courage, hope, confidence, meditation, consciousness, strength, protection, luck and spirituality.
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