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Here comes the Solstice!
December 20 Mother Night
Yule begins with Mother Night (Sacred to Frigga). As the night before the Winter Solstice, this is the time when the New Year is born. We honor the beginning of Sunnas return and the breaking of Winters spell. This is a time to honor Thor and Freyr, celebrate by Blot, Sumbel, and High Feast. Burn a Yule Log and jump the flames for luck and purification.
Longest Night of the Year (Northern Hemisphere)
The winter solstice marks the shortest day and the longest night of the year. The sun appears at its lowest point in the sky, and its noontime elevation appears to be the same for several days before and after the solstice. Hence the origin of the word solstice, which comes from Latin solstitium, from sol, ���sun��� and -stitium, ���a stoppage.��� Following the winter solstice, the days begin to grow longer and the nights shorter.
December 21st Winter Solstice
This is traditionally an important time, and can be used to signify the chart for the year ahead, much like the New Year���s Day chart. It is an especially good time for rituals for this reason, as we collectively center our thoughts for our personal year to come. This year, the Sun is accompanied by a very close conjunction with Jupiter, and Mercury, both newly entered into Capricorn, with Pluto also nearby in Sagittarius as well.
Whhe Sun enters Capricorn 12/21 at 10:08 p.m. PST it marks the Winter solstice. The Capricorn principle demonstrates how self-reliance and consolidation of power and authority lead to mastery. Our job during Capricorn is to demonstrate mastery of accomplishment and right use of power and authority.
People all over the world celebrate Winter Solstice as a time of rebirth, a new beginning and a chance to marvel at the power of transition from darkness into light.
Ancient Solstice festivals were the last big feasts before the depths of winter — when food would become scarce. This magical day was celebrated from ancient Rome to China, and by the builders of Stonehenge to the Maya and more.
Many modern holiday traditions like Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa and New Year’s were borrowed from ancient Solstice celebrations. Cultures throughout the world still have winter festivals that include lights and large fires, feasting, dancing and singing, and closeness with loved ones. As they did long ago, these activities help to reinvigorate us in the cold and darkness.
December 23rd Full Moon
Closely following the Winter Solstice, this dynamic Capricorn ��� Cancer Full Moon lines up almost exactly with the opposition between Mars and Jupiter, just a degree away. There is loads of energy for moving forward, and also some reservations that we will experience at this time as to the ultimate direction of that forward movement, since Mars remain retrograde. Generally speaking we will be more ready to share our experience with others around us at this time. Venus also square Neptune, so that there is a spiritualizing influence, and confusion as well, in regard to our relationship goals.
Jupiter Conjunct Pluto
With Jupiter now in an exact conjunction with Pluto, we are offered a once-in-12-year point in time to living a greater Way, Truth, and Life. This can help us open our vision, our imagination, and our sense of life’s adventures in a new freedom to be who we really are and living our heart-fire on our own terms. We have refined our depth experience of life at very profound levels, and shown how things are connected, or not, and what part each plays in the greater picture.
Jupiter conjunct Pluto can bring blessings and openings beyond our wildest dreams, so get ready to ride a whole new wave of Fire energy in your life, straight from the Galactic Center! This is a great new beginning. The great wheel has turned, so continue to show appreciation and gratitude for the freedom you’re glimpsing, as these seeds will prove to be potent stimulators for years to come. Definitely get inspired, since there’s a lot of work to be done now that we’re seeing the light of the heart of the Galaxy!
The Pagan celebration of Winter Solstice (also known as Yule) is one of the oldest winter celebrations in the world.
Ancient people were hunters and spent most of their time outdoors. The seasons and weather played a very important part in their lives. Because of this many ancient people had a great reverence for, and even worshipped the sun. The Norsemen of Northern Europe saw the sun as a wheel that changed the seasons. It was from the word for this wheel, houl, that the word yule is thought to have come. At mid-winter the Norsemen lit bonfires, told stories and drank sweet ale.
The ancient Romans also held a festival to celebrate the rebirth of the year. Saturnalia ran for seven days from the 17th of December. It was a time when the ordinary rules were turned upside down. Men dressed as women and masters dressed as servants. The festival also involved decorating houses with greenery, lighting candles, holding processions and giving presents.
Before Christianity came to the British Isles the Winter Solstice was held on the shortest day of the year (21st December). The Druids (Celtic priests) would cut the mistletoe that grew on the oak tree and give it as a blessing. Oaks were seen as sacred and the winter fruit of the mistletoe was a symbol of life in the dark winter months.
It was also the Druids who began the tradition of the yule log. The Celts thought that the sun stood still for twelve days in the middle of winter and during this time a log was lit to conquer the darkness, banish evil spirits and bring luck for the coming year.
Many of these customs are still followed today. They have been incorporated into the Christian and secular celebrations of Christmas.
For Sun, Moon and Rising Signs
by James Jarvis, M.A. http://lifeqwest.com
Try to temper your career enthusiasm with a commitment to not driving yourself too hard. You can accomplish a lot this month if you remain grounded. Focus on goals that are both realistic and expansive.
You might benefit through being involved in some sort of community service this month. Is there a cause or issue that speaks to your heart? If so, this could be an opportunity to know you���re making a difference.
Relationships will benefit from your ability to directly speak the truth. You see the broader picture now and are able to be incisive in your communications. Remember: speak the truth and it will set you free!
The full Moon at 1 degrees Cancer 12/23 amplifies your natural sensitivity. It���s time to tune into what you need from others for a change. It may seem a little selfish at first but you���ll get used to it!
You may be feeling very expansive one moment and then very contracted the next. You���re being asked to balance your expansive, optimistic energy with your realistic side so you can create ���sustainable growth.���
Pay attention to thoughts that are coming up from your subconscious. You have an opportunity to become aware of negative beliefs running in the background. Don���t resist them, just bless them and let them go.
This is an extremely creative time for you. Your ability to visualize the ideal is very strong right now. Like the artist that sees the completed painting in their mind, you can make the intangible tangible.
Being a champion for the rights of others is your role this month. You have empathy for those that are treated unfairly or unjustly. Look to see how you can make a difference with your concern and caring.
Sagittarius 11/ 22-12/20
The new moon in Sagittarius on 12/9 helps you connect with inner wisdom. Nothing is gained and much is lost if you ignore this inner voice. Trusting your inner authority brings deep healing and peace.
You���re probably feeling like you���re in an emotional whirlpool. The challenge is no one knows because it���s all swirling around inside. Get some support so you can objectify what���s going on and move forward.
Aquarius 1/ 21-2/18
You have the ability to step back and get a broader perspective on your life. Take some time out to still your mind and you will find that new solutions to old problems will surface. New insights that break up old beliefs are the focus.
If you���ve been looking for exercise that supports your spirit, try the softer martial arts like Akido, Qi-gong, tai-chi or Pa-kua. Vinyasa flow yoga, swimming, roller blading, ice skating or dancing will also get you in the flow.
HAPPY SOLSTICE AND YULETIDE CELEBRATIONS TO ONE AND ALL!!
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