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Let's talk about Yule for a moment. This Pagan holiday takes place on the day of the Winter Solstice, around December 21.

On the Solstice, something really cool happens. The Earth's axis tilts away from the sun in the Northern Hemisphere, and the sun reaches at its greatest distance from the equatorial plane. As a festival of the Sun, the most important part of any Yule celebration is light -- candles, bonfires, and more.

This marks the moment when the days would again become longer, when light would return to the land, the rural folk who faced lean times in winter had reason to be thankful. The use of candles as decorations and ritual objects, dating from ancient times, clearly indicates the importance of honoring the deities of light.

The sun's return meant spring was on its way,and with it, the birth of new animals to the flock, and the softening of the soil tilled by our ancestors who lived as animal herders and farmers. Their celebration of this date as a holy day, when they worshiped and honored the sun as a deity, was an affirmation of their survival of the cold months of winter. They subsisted on the dried meats of the animals they slaughtered at Samhain, and what little produce they could preserve from the final harvest.

This entry was posted on Monday, December 15, 2008 at Monday, December 15, 2008 and is filed under , . You can follow any responses to this entry through the comments feed .


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