Tag Archive | winter

Yule Time Begins

It’s That Time of Year Again

The winter solstice, also known as midwinter, is an astronomical phenomenon marking the day with the shortest period of daylight and the longest night of the year. It occurs when one of the Earth’s poles has its maximum tilt away from the Sun. It happens twice yearly, once in each hemisphere.

Here in the Northern Hemisphere, the solstice occurs on December 21st and marks the start of the Winter holiday for Pagans. The Solstice is known as Midwinter, Yule for Pagans, the Longest Night, and Jól for the Norse.

Yule for Pagans, is a 12 day celebration that honors the Goddess in all 3 of her forms, Maiden, Mother, and Crone. And the rebirth of the God, in the form of the Sun. Each one of these representations of the Divine is honored and observed for a 3 day period beginning with the Maiden. The Mother Goddess comes next, followed by the Sun God, and ending with the Crone. 

This year of 2018, Pagans will also enjoy a special occurrence of a Full Moon (read more at Space.com) AND a meteor shower during the Yuletide celebrations. The Ursid meteor shower is active each year around the December solstice. This year’s peak morning is probably December 22. Even under the full moon light, you should be able to see a little bit of the meteors. So if you’re up before sunrise, look up and check it out. (read more at EarthSky.org). Continue reading

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The 12 Days of Yule

Merry Yule To You and Yours!

Merry Yule To You and Yours!

Celebrating The Winter Solstice

Today marks the Winter Solstice. The first day of Yule for pagans and it begins the 12 day celebration that honors the Triple Goddess and the rebirth of the God in the form of the Sun.

In the days of old, calendars were based on a variety of sources. Some were lunar or astrological. Some were remarkably accurate, others may have been off by a day or more. Some may have been based on calculations that were learned through years of observations, or passed down through generations. And then there were those that tracked the sun through early temple or monument structures. Continue reading

Happy December!

yuleforest11 Days Till Yule Begins!

It seems like this year has gone by so quickly. But here in the northern hemisphere, the air has grown colder, the leaves have fallen, or are almost gone and our attention turns to the season of peace and joy.

For we Pagan Metaphysicians, that means it’s almost time for Yule. The 12 days of December where we honor the spirits of the Triple Goddess, the return of the God King and the enlightenment within ourselves and toward those around us.

Yule is a 12 day holiday, that begins on the evening of the Winter Solstice known as “Mother’s Night” (December 21st) and ends 12 days later on “Yule Night” (January 1st).

These festival celebrations are observed from sunset to sunset. In addition to honoring the Divine aspects of the Universe, this is also a time to go within and align one’s soul to the Divine and review the spiritual mission and lessons one has chosen for this lifetime. It’s not simply a time for reverent honor of the Divine, but for putting the gifts the Divine brings into practical manifestation in your life.

Yuletide is broken down into 4 observances.

  • Dec. 20 to Dec. 23. During the 1st 3 days –
    The virgin Maiden Goddess is honored as your guide for moving forward into the new year, to set you on the right and positive path. For many this is a time to align with the Maiden Goddess and go within to discern where your soul “needs”you to be vs. where your physical brain/heart “wants” you to be.
  • Dec. 23 to Dec. 26. The 2nd set of 3 days –
    The Mother Goddess is honored for fertility and all your coming endeavors. Again this is a reverent celebration that looks to align your soul with the greater Divine Creation of the Mother Goddess. To focus on what you “need” to create in your life to carry your soul forward on its spiritual mission.
  • Dec. 26 to Dec 29. The 3rd set of 3 days –
    These 3 days are set aside for the rebirth of the God, and honoring his guidance through the physical world. For many this is making plans and putting the spiritual knowledge learned from Maiden and Mother Goddess into practical steps. To physically create the spiritual insight that was attained.
  • Dec. 29 to Jan. 1. –
    The last 3 days are set aside for the Old Crone Goddess who is honored for wisdom and as your teacher into the cosmic lessons of life and spirit. In modern times, under the solar calendar, she might also be honored as the waning year giving way to the new year. Here many people align with the wise Old Crone to review their spiritual lessons and karmic mission. What have they cleared and what have they gained. What holds them back and how do they embrace the wisdom of the Divine and move forward into the coming year.

Festival celebrations vary greatly from one Pagan tradition (what we call our denominations) to the next. Even within the same tradition each individual group (coven, clan, grove etc) can implement different practices for celebration.

Some additional reading you might like to read and share:

Whatever your celebration practices maybe, here at Springwolf Reflections and Spring’s Haven, we hope you all have a wonderful, happy and joyful holiday season!
© Springwolfs Hanko

© 2013 Springwolf, D.D., Ph.D. Springwolf Reflections / Springs Haven, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

The History of Yule

The Winter Solstice
By SpringWolf, D.D., Ph.D.

The Winter Solstice marks the shortest day of the year and the beginning of Winter. In simple terms it is one of two points on the ecliptic at which the sun is overhead at the tropic of Capricorn, when the Sun is at its southern most point for those in the Northern Hemisphere.

“The earliest people on Earth knew that the sun’s path across the sky, the length of daylight, and the location of the sunrise and sunset all shifted in a regular way throughout the year. They built monuments such as Stonehenge in England and Machu Picchu in Peru to follow the sun’s yearly progress.”
Deborah Byrd

The Winter Solstice has marked the beginning of winter and provided a point in time where homes and communities needed to be prepared and ready for the barren cold months. For some it designated the official end of the harvest season. For others it marks a time of spiritual celebration. And for others it’s nothing more than an astronomical occurrence and scientific event. But to Pagans, it marks the beginning of the 12 Days of Yule and time to honor the Triple Goddess and rebirth of the God. Continue reading

Sunday Homily: Who is Santa Claus – A History

Happy Holiday Howling!

Happy Holiday Howling!

The Origins Of The Winter Gift Giver
By SpringWolf, D.D., Ph.D.

It twas a blustery night as the snow fell heavily through the wintry barren trees. The land lay quiet, the fields are still from harvest and inside the hearth blazed warm with the burning yule log. But overhead in the storm laden clouds, a clash of hooves and metal thunder in the night. For Odin and his great horse Sleipnir are celebrating the Wild Hunt on this solstice eve with spear in hand and brethren by his side. Their windswept ride is long and filled with madness that shall not end till the twelfth night of Yule. But during their ride, in the fields below, there lies grain of plenty and piles of straw fit for the hordes of Odin’s steeds. His eight legged horse Sleipnir rests upon the ground and feasts on the meal left for the mounts of the Gods. And in return for this gift, Odin the All-Father leaves presents of gold. Quietly he fills the winter boots resting outside the door of the humble homes that lay quiet in the cold winter night. Continue reading