Yule/Winter Solstice is celebrated December 19 - 23 for Northern Hemisphere and June 19 -23 for Southern Hemisphere. The Sun (in the Northern Hemisphere), at it's low time, the shortest day, longest night. A celebration known as Yule, Winter Solstice and even called Christmas. The cold and dark are celebrated as the Sun now slowly begins to return.
Yule, the shortest day/longest night of the year, is a Lesser Wiccan Sabbat and greatly celebrated and known as Winter Solstice, Midwinter, Yuletide, Sun Return, Pagan New Year, Great Day of the Cauldron, and Festival of Sol. This is the time of cold, darkness, rebirth of the Sun God, renewal, and waxing sun overcoming the waning sun.
Representation & Associations of Yule/Winter Solstice: In Midsummer, we have the Oak King representing death; in Midwinter we have the Holly King representing death. Both the oak and holly can be symbols for your celebrations during Yule representing birth and death. A wand, rune set or simply a small piece of each, oak and holly, can decorate your altar all through the year. The Oak is prominant from Winter Solstice to Summer Solstice when the Holly becomes dominant until Winter Solstice.
As this time of darkness on the shortest day of the year, we begin celebrating the return of the sun which can be represented with various sun/solar symbols, yule logs, candles, wheel of the year, evergreens, wreaths, holly, mistletoe, trees and nuts.
Colors for Winter Celebrations are green, red, white, silver and gold.
Gemstones for your celebrations at this time include bloodstone, ruby, garnet, green aventurine, emerald, red jasper and moonstone.
Animals associated with Yule are deer, reindeer, squirrels, chickadees, blue jays, cardinals as well as the mythical phoenix.
Herbs, Resins, Plants and Trees for this time are holly, oak, greens, bayberries, dried rose petals/buds, oranges, cranberries, mistletoe, bay, pine, ginger, valerian, frankincense, cinnamon, and myrrh. This is such a festive time of year and many of the above are combined to make or add to wreaths, bundles and boughs and further decorated with sun and star symbols.
Celebrate with foods from local and personal harvests: pears, apples, oranges, lemons, cranberries, cinnamon sticks, popcorn, nuts, corn, pork, cookies, cakes, wine, cider, mulled cider, ginger tea and various fruit and vegetable pies. Again, at this festive time, many of these foods/spices can be used for decorations, added to garlands and greens as well as to make potpourris and incense.
* Modern Tradition: You can make your own or purchase one from our handcrafted section which hold three chime or taper candles. We make these from fallen branches from our property and they will easily sit upon your altar, table or desk for burning candles. You may decorate with ribbon, greens, etc. You can change the ribbons and greenery to bows and flowers for your various celebrations throughout the year. You can burn the traditional color candles of red, green, white, silver and gold in your Yule Log Candle Holder as well as bayberry which is known for prosperity, growth and happiness for the upcoming year. As with the traditional yule log (below), light candles as the sun is setting.
* Traditional: Obtain a large log to burn in a bonfire or fire place. You can carve, draw or paint symbols such as the sun or horned god on it or leave plain. Light your log on Yule as the sun goes down. Meditate on the sun returning and rituals you and spellwork you will be working on. A piece of this log is saved to light your yule log the next year. Keep this portion you have saved in a sacred space to add protection for you and your home.
Gods & Goddesses to celebrate and honor at Yuletide: Odin, Morrigan, Brigid, Isis, Demeter, Gaea, Artemis, Diana, Astarte, Lugh, Ra, Osiris, Horus, Belenos, Triple Goddesses and Mother Goddesses.
Spellwork and Rituals during Winter Solstice are for balance, protection, beauty, peace, happiness, health, love, harmony and prosperity. Yuletide Blessings to you ~