Good Wiccan Winter Solstice – Yule, Midwinter – circa December 22
Wiccan Holy Days and Sabbaths to Observe –
Opening and Closing Remarks
History of the Winter Solstice
Leader (or someone) tells the story…
“The Winter Solstice, also known as Midwinter or ‘Yule after the Nordic word meaning ‘wheel.’ The holiday is about renewal and rebirth on the darkest day of the year.
“The Virgin Goddess who was impregnated at May Day (Beltane) – now gives birth to God. Originally, the term virgin – did not mean ‘didn’t have sex before.’ Virgin was applied to a self-sufficient woman, usually someone holy like a priestess, who was considered whole and complete unto herself – i.e. she was not bound by law or to a husband. This was eventually mistranslated by the early Church.
“The God child is the bringer of hope and a promise for the new year yet to come. The comparisons to the Christian Winter celebration are obvious and it is a testament to the strength of the original pagan beliefs that the Church chose to celebrate Jesus’ birth a few days away from this pagan celebration.
“The Yule Log is a phallic symbol made of oak which is sacred to God. It is decorated with 3 candles symbolizing the triple Goddess and further decorated with evergreen branches and holly berries. Pine trees are sacred to the Goddess because they don’t die throughout the year. They symbolize the eternal life within the wheel of the year. Evergreen trees are traditionally decorated with symbols of hopes and dreams for the coming year.
“Candles are lit to further show the significance of the year’s darkest day and to punctuate the fact that the year is turning back to the light. They are a reminder to us that it is always darkest before the dawn. And that no matter where we are personally, there is always the hope of new light and a new life.”
Winter Solstice Ritual – Concluding Remarks
Leader thanks all for attending and concludes:
“This is the beginning and it is the end of the year. Remember the old cliché‚ really rings true… It is darkest before the dawn. If you ever need reminding of that, recall the taste of salt and sugar and ponder the wheel of the year whenever you see a wreath.
“Reach out far and wide to expand and reinvent yourself, knowing the circle of life the wheel of the year wills this as a natural part of life. “Remember to be a willow rooted in wisdom, yet willing to bend with the winds of the world.