Your Summer Solstice 2024 Guide: Ancient Wisdom and Modern Rituals

June 14, 2024

Every year when the sun moves into cardinal water sign Cancer, we kick off summer in the northern hemisphere and winter in the southern hemisphere, below the equator. For many of us, summer represents family fun time, vacations, the beach, bbqs, picnics, and time for outdoor rest and relaxation. But there is so much more astrological significance to the summer solstice to explore as we look back to ancient times and the celebration of this special time of the year.

The Sun is Standing Still

The word solstice is derived from the Latin words sol, which means “sun,” and sistere, which means “to stand still”. “The sun is standing still.” Solstices are significant times in the year when the sun is the furthest from the celestial equator. Because the Earth’s axis is tilted at an angle of approximately 23.5 degrees, the hemisphere that is tilted closest to the sun during the solstice period experiences summer. Summertime begins in the northern hemisphere around June 21 every year when the sun is directly overhead at the tropic of Cancer, and we experience the longest daylight hours of the year. From this day, the sun begins a new journey, lowering each day in the northern hemisphere and the amount of daylight gets shorter, until we reach the winter solstice and Capricorn season. 

So what does this all mean? As above, so below. If we look to the heavens and compare what is happening during the summer solstice as a guide, we can use this as a time for renewal, growth, abundance, hope and prosperity. 

A Fresh Start 

The cardinal signs (Aries, Cancer, Libra, Capricorn), are the zodiac signs associated with the four seasons. Cardinal energy is an energy of action, new beginnings, and moving forward. While Cancer season is usually associated with summer (or winter) break, this is a potent energy that we can take advantage of to call forth things we want to manifest in life. Cancer is ruled by the moon and the sun and moon are called the two “luminaries” in astrology. When the sun is in Cancer, we have a blending of both active and receptive energy. This is a time when our identity can align with our emotions. If we consciously work with this energy, we can make big strides towards our heart’s desires. 

The sign of Cancer has additional ancient significance when we look to the Thema Mundi (Latin word for World Theme), an ancient astrological chart that is connected to the mythical birth chart for the world. In this chart Cancer is set as the ascendant or rising sign since it, along with Leo, is the most northern of the twelve signs and close to the zenith, the highest point on the celestial sphere. The ascendant or rising sign in a natal chart, is the sign that was rising or ascending at the moment we took our first breath. So when we enter Cancer season, we can breathe new life into the year and feel reinvigorated to continue our life’s journey. 

Summer Solstice 2024

This year’s summer solstice occurs on June 20 at 1:51 pm PST / 4:51 EST. The sun in Cancer sits with both Venus and Mercury, and Cancer’s ruler, the moon, is in mutable fire sign, Sagittarius. The moon makes a positive aspect to its nodes in Aries and Libra. The blending of the cardinal and mutable energy, the luminaries, and the moon’s nodes, influences us to make changes that can feel destined. 

Camille Craft of Vital.Mystic on the energy of the solstice: “Cusped with the first of two full moon’s in Capricorn (June 21st/July 21st, 2024) directly after- this solstice brings the energy of rebirth as a direct result of embodied and chosen recalibration (aka hard work). Although Solstice is always associated with expansion- the moon reaches its greatest waxing position on Solstice- and also its highest manifesting power before the full moon. This further amplifies your ability to rise from the ashes from anything that has felt draining or unfair/unjust in the last six months- and make a full comeback-in a new and profound way. The energy of the Phoenix is in full force for this Solstice.” 

Rituals for the Summer Solstice 

Rituals are a great way to harness the power of this cardinal energy. By making a bold statement to the universe, you can kick off a transformation while being supported by the cosmos and nature. Camille Craft is an expert at combining astrology and ritual and shared three easy summer solstice rituals: 

“On this solstice- pick one area of your life where you are ready for a full rebirth (hint: look at the house that is ruled by Sagittarius in your chart). Then choose one of these three rituals to do:” 

1. Releasing the Past- get two candles and encircle with an infinity loop of salt and connect with string with an ‘X’ in the middle. The candle on the left represents where you are going, the candle on the right represents what you are leaving behind. Write down intentions for each candle specific to the area of your life you want to rebirth (what you are releasing and what you are calling in). When the string breaks- offer each paper to its respective candle and let the candles burn out. Scatter the salt at your entryway, take a bath with it or offer it to the earth. 

2. Magnify Mirror Ritual- Place a mirror in front of you with a candle encircled with salt. Place one hand on your heart and one on the mirror. Look into your eyes and say out loud how you are setting yourself free. Write down in present tense specifically what you said, read it out loud again and offer to the candle. When the candle is out-the ritual is complete. 

3. Amplify Spiritual Bath- Gather some of your favorite ingredients for a bath- to match Sagittarius energy- use beet or pomegranate juice to turn your bath water red. Add salt, sacred smoke, a cleansed water safe quartz and any water safe flowers you feel called to use. Before placing the crystal in the water- hold it in your left palm and charge it with the energy of the sun by seeing the sun shining from the center of the crystal. Connect the energy of the crystal with the center of your heart- and visualize the highest most optimal solution, path, opportunity or connection coming to you for your success. Place the crystal in the bath and continue to visualize this solution coming to you . Once you feel complete and fully charged- the ritual is complete.

Summer Solstice for Each Zodiac Sign

So now I bet you’re wondering how the summer solstice may affect you personally. If you want to narrow in on one particular area of your life to renew and refresh, look to the house that is ruled by Cancer and the moon in your natal chart. Run your free birth chart here. Here are themes that are present for each zodiac sign during the summer solstice. Read for your sun, moon and rising signs: 

  • Aries sun/rising – Home, family, ancestry 
  • Taurus sun/rising – Communication, short-distance travel, siblings, & distant relatives 
  • Gemini sun/rising – Finances, material wealth, self-worth 
  • Cancer sun/rising – Self, personality, physical body 
  • Leo sun/rising – Subconscious, karma, unseen forces  
  • Virgo sun/rising – Friends, network, hopes and wishes 
  • Libra sun/rising – Career, reputation 
  • Scorpio sun/rising – Travel, higher education, spirituality, marketing 
  • Sagittarius sun/rising –  Resources with others, occult subjects, sex
  • Capricorn sun/rising – Romantic and platonic relationships and partnerships 
  • Aquarius sun/rising – Daily routine, work, health 
  • Pisces sun/rising – Creativity, children, self-expression 

And which zodiac signs will be most affected by the summer solstice? Craft says, “Sagittarius and Gemini (especially as Jupiter has recently moved into Gemini). If your top 3 (Sun, Moon, Rising) are in these signs- you will get a special dose of magic coming your way.” 

But don’t fret, you don’t need to have Gemini or Sagittarius placements in your chart to experience the magic of the summer solstice. You have rituals and history associated with this special time at your fingertips now, so go forth and create your own magic. 

Happy summer solstice!