“The sun, the sun shines down on the land.
The sun, the sun shines down on the land.
We are dancing in the sun.
We are dancing in the sun.
The sun is our dancing.
Souls are dancing.”
A song given to me by the oxeye daisy
Summertime and the Summer Solstice. The word Solstice means “pause”. My shamanic teachers have offered wisdom to me about this time of year as not a waning but a widening, an expansion of the earth’s energies and a great time of manifestation. At Summer Solstice, the energy of the earth is fully activated from the deepest parts of the earth up and out to the deepest reaches of the cosmos, connecting us with our ancient past and our ancestors and also into our infinite future. This energy is most activated between mid-June and the beginning of August.
During this most potent of seasons, not only is the energy of the earth activated up and out into the cosmos, but also it is connected down deep into the earth’s mysteries. It beneficial to focus our attention on the dynamic, outward energy of life, and to allow ourselves time to look deep within and to find stillness and peace.
The Summer Solstice is the time of the soul’s calling, your soul’s longing, your soul’s passion: Imagine the soul is the sun. Breathe the energy of the sun down through the top of your head and down through your entire being and into the ground. And now breathe, the energy of the earth up through your being and out the top of your head and do this a few times. As you do this, listen to your soul. You don’t have to understand it, Suspend disbelief. You are fully connected with everything.
There are three plants, that I utilize, that bring their most potent medicine at Summer Solstice.
St. Joan’s Wort, Hypericum perforatum, connects us with the soul of who we are. She is a most precious nervous system nourisher and healer and a plant teacher. Plant teachers are those plants that will heal anything and everything. St. Joan’s Wort is one such plant. Nervous system, liver, immune system, energetic system, healing thoughts, emotions and spirit. The beautiful yellow flowers reveal within them, a deep magenta-red substance who’s smell calms and who’s medicine is like no other. This plant supports us to bring focus to who we truly are.
Cronewort: Artemesia vulgaris and Artemsia suksdorfii…Artemesia vulgaris is uterine, digestive and nervous system tonic-stimulant She is utilized to transform, to move energy. She supports visions in dreams…as a tea or tincture and as smoke. As an infused oil of Artemsia vulgaris deepens the effect of other oil utilized with it. I consider this plants to among the most powerful plants there are. Strong physically, yes and incredibly potent psychically. A plant to utilize with utmost integrity and intention when you wish to evoke her magic
Yarrow, Achillea millefolium grows wild on the beaches here on Whidbey and in my garden. Yarrow is a wound healer and a good companion for the wounded healer. She supports those who are affected deeply by our healing work. Staunching bleeding, she is an ally for women in menopause, slowing down bleeding. Yarrow is a warrior herb. She goes deep in healing wounds and especially violent wounds. She is a protection for the warrior and healer. Yarrow allows the fever to be transformed and the person to be reborn. I call upon Yarrow to transform my entire being, bringing new manifestation to my world. I dreamed of her years ago…a phoenix in a garden burst into flames and was reborn as a yarrow plant.
Yarrow ~ Expanding the Soul’s Offering ~ Shamanic Exercise
This exercise is best done without to much thought. Abandon your desire to analyze and figure out how to do it, just begin and allow the momentum of your intention to take over. This exercise is best done with the native yarrow.
- Sit or stand near the yarrow.
- Breathe with Yarrow, 7 breaths. Breathing in its oxygen, breathing out offering your breath.
- Allow what isn’t needed anymore to burn away, so that your soul’s offering can expand. Is it the yarrow burning it away? the phoenix? the sun?
- Breathe into your soul field. Breathing and listening.
- See if Yarrow has a song to share with you.
- Offer gratitude when this is complete, to yarrow and to your soul.
Crafting with Summer Solstice Plants
St. Joan’s Wort is best crafted into tincture or infused oil. I harvest the buds and the flowers right into a jar and make the medicine as soon as possible after gathering. The tincture relieves pain, uplifts the spirit and calms the nervous system. The oil does a similar task when applied topically.
I craft infused oil with Artemesia vulgaris every year. I harvest the flower stalks, cut them up and pour organic olive over them. From the very beginning of my life as a shamanic herbalist, this herbal preparation has been one of the most potent I have concocted. She will actually deepen the affect of other oils when used with St. Joan’s Wort, Dandelion Flower, Cottonwood and others.
Yarrow can be crafted into tincture, oil and vinegar and utilized as described above. Call upon yarrow medicine when you are desiring to burn away that which you no longer need. Ask her to transform, to rebirth your most potent desires.
Each of these Summer Solstice Plants offers deep soul medicine for you. Set aside some time to go in search of these plants. Get to know them before harvesting. Aknowledge each of these herbs as beings of great wisdom. Sit with them, breathe with them, ask them, “What have you for me?” Listen and be grateful for what is offered.
May you pause and widen your life to welcome your most potent and expansive self.
May it be in Beauty.