# of divers

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Fire celebrations in the ordered universe

The passing of the longest day of the year brings many festivities as we celebrate the arrival of the summer solstice.

The weather has turned, and there is much lemonade'ing, water-splashing, beaching, surfing, traveling, sailing, seaside strolling, sand dancing, and heaps of summer other'ings to do.

With the change of seasons come many worldwide firey celebrations. If you're vying to leave the backyard for a bout of travel, any of the following will have you checking your sun sign for a searing adventure.

Marking the height of summer, the residents of Wakayama, Japan commemorate Nachi-no-Hi-Matsuri, one of Japan's largest fire festivals held in honor of their ancestors. The celebration takes place by a Shinto shrine near the sacred waterfall sheltered in the mountains.

Here, twelve colossal torches each representing a god, are lit for purification by bearers clothed in white.

Adults and children from the northern Kakunodate region of Japan gather to participate in the century old practice at the Hiburi Fire Swinging Festival to bring good health and harvests to the coming year.

The Scottish include a fire procession led by a thousand torch carriers, known as the Up Helly Aa to earmark the close of winter. It is said that the celebration arose from early Scandinavian Viking raids, so festivalgoers will dress as their ancestor counterparts to pay homage.

 For the closing ceremony, a festival galley Viking ship is ignited for the fête.

Travel to Southwestern Europe to Spain's La Patum de Berga fire fest and you'll be certain to take delight in fireworks and flames of awe and wonder.

burning tar barrel running - The British Isles

Iranian Fire Festival

Florida Renaissance Festival

Marsden Imbolc Festival


Liestal, Switzerland

Edinburgh Hogmany

So, with the warm weather at your front doorstep, and the sparkly fireworks high in the sky above this season, don't forget to marvel in your own life celebration amidst the long, hot and fiery midsummer days and warm nights.


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