Although this photograph was taken in January, when I hear the words “summer solstice” it reminds me of Stonehenge. Although we are scientifically celebrating the tilt of the Earth’s semi-axis, the summer solstice is so much more than that. From the Latin sol sistere (the sun stands still), the summer solstice has been celebrated for thousands of years for countless reasons.
For Eastern Orthodox Christians, the summer solstice marks the feast of St. John the Baptist. In many countries today, midsummer is a public holiday. In the United States, the significance of today is barely acknowledged, but midsummer around the world is a time of feasts, celebrations, and parades. Until I can return to Stonehenge to celebrate a summer or winter solstice, a symbolic acknowledgement and celebration of today will have to do.
Today I will wear a bracelet carved from bluestone (dolerite), the same stone from the same place that ancient builders carved Stonehenge. How will you celebrate midsummer today?