For the ancient celts and scandinavians seasonal changes were important both in agiculture and for survival. Today we follow and concept of linear time however when we lived closely with nature, depending on her for survival, time was cyclical. The Wheel of the Year is a calendar focused on the cyclical change of the season.
For the communities who depended on it, the Wheel of the Year was used both religiously and to dictate when to plow, sow, harvest, and rest. The turning of the Wheel represents the continuing birth, death and rebirth of nature.
The wheel of the year as we know it today combines both Celtic, Nordic and neolithic cultures. The original Celtic wheel celebrated just four fire festivals, evenly spaced throughout the year, celebrating the transition of the sun throughout the seasons. Today these are combined with Nordic and neolithic celebrations of the solstices and equinoxes, which are represented in neolithic sites such as Stonehenge, Avebury or Newgrange.
There are 8 festivals celebrated in the modern wheel of the year
Samhain (Oct 31),
Yule/Midwinter Solstice (c. Dec 21)
Imbolc (Feb 1),
Ostara/ Spring Equinox (c. March 21)
Bealtaine (May 1),
Litha/Midsummer Solstice (c. June 21),
Lammas (Aug 1).
Mabon/Autumn Equinox (c. Sept 21).
To find out more about how to reconnect with this cycle and learn to grow in harmony with nature go to Re:Root’s Walking the Wheel of the Year workshop program