So yesterday we talked a little about the origins of Yule and even Christmas traditions. Today I’d like to talk about the extras! All of these symbols, herbs, stones and colors can be put together in a ceremony tailored for you and your family and friends. Below, are the “ingredients” for a ceremony. I will add a sun welcoming ritual for you to try.
Just because you aren’t pagan or Wiccan doesn’t mean you can’t celebrate Yule, the winter solstice! It is a time of great symbolism and power. It marks the return of the sun, when the days finally begin to get a little longer. It's also a time to celebrate with family and friends, and share the spirit of giving during the holidays. All faiths can celebrate the return of the sun!
Symbolism of Yule:
Rebirth of the Sun/Son, The longest night of the year, The Winter Solstice, Introspect, Planning for the Future.
Symbols of Yule:
Yule log, or small Yule log with 3 candles, evergreen boughs or wreaths, holly, mistletoe hung in doorways, gold pillar candles, baskets of clove studded fruit, a simmering pot of wassail, poinsettias, christmas cactus.
Herbs of Yule:
Bayberry, blessed thistle, evergreen, frankincense holly, laurel, mistletoe, oak, pine, sage, yellow cedar.
Incense of Yule:
Pine, cedar, bayberry, cinnamon.
Colors of Yule:
Red, green, gold, white, silver, yellow, orange.
Stones of Yule:
Rubies, bloodstones, garnets, emeralds, diamonds.
For those of you who are pagan and want to do spellwork:
Spellworkings of Yule:
Peace, harmony, love, and increased happiness.
Deities of Yule:
Goddesses-Brighid, Isis, Demeter, Gaea, Diana, The Great Mother. Gods-Apollo, Ra, Odin, Lugh, The Oak King, The Horned One, The Green Man, The Divine Child, Mabon.
Above info taken from: https://wicca.com/celtic/akasha/yule.htm
Welcome the sun back for Yule:
Because this is a festival of fire and light, feel free to use lots of candles and lights, solar symbols, bright colors, or even a bonfire. Bring light back into your home and your life.
In the center, place a sun candle** on a riser, so it's above the rest. Don't light any of the candles just yet.
Turn off all the other lights, face the candles, and say:
The wheel of the year has turned once more,
and the nights have grown longer and colder.
Tonight, the darkness begins to retreat,
and light begins its return once again.
As the wheel continues to spin,
the sun returns to us once more.
Light the sun candle, and say:
Even in the darkest hours,
even in the longest nights,
the spark of life lingered on.
Laying dormant, waiting, ready to return
when the time was right.
The darkness will leave us now,
as the sun begins its journey home.
Beginning with the candles closest to the sun candle, and working your way outward, light each of the other candles. As you light each one, say:
As the wheel turns, light returns. The light of the sun has returned to us,
bringing life and warmth with it.
The shadows will vanish, and life will continue.
We are blessed by the light of the sun.
Take a moment to think about what the return of the sun means to you.
The return of the light meant many things to different cultures. How does it affect you, and your loved ones? When you're ready, go through the house and turn all the lights back on. If you have children, make it a game -- they can yell out, "Welcome back, sun!"
If you're not too full from dinner, have some eggnog and cookies on standby, and take the time to bask in the light of your candles and eat some treats. When you're done, extinguish the candles from the outside of the altar working towards the center, leaving the sun candle for last.
- ** A sun candle is simply a candle you've designated to represent the sun in ritual. It can be in a sunny color -- gold or yellow -- and if you like, you can inscribe it with solar sigils.
- If you like, you can do this ritual on the morning of Yule. Cook a big breakfast with lots of eggs, and watch the sun rise. If you do this, you can eliminate all the candles except the sun candle. Allow the sun candle to burn all day before you extinguish it.
Next up is FOOD! All celebrations that involve friends and family gatherings include foods. I’ll have some great menus and recipes for you as well as other pre-Yule preparations and decoration ideas.