In 2019 Winter Solstice falls on 22nd December marking, for the Ancient Celts, the journey from this year to the next, from this world to the next.
On this longest night of the year the rebirth of the Sun was celebrated and the Norse goddess Frigga spun the fates at her spinning wheel: the celebrations at this Special time was called Yule from the Norse word Yul meaning wheel. Sound a little familiar?
Are there any other correlations between Winter Solstice and Christmas?
Apart from being Winter celebrations that is. Well here’s just a few:
- The wreath symbolised Frigga’s wheel of fate, the cycle of Seasons and continuity of life.
- Burning candles in celebration of the rebirth of the god of light came to celebrate Christ’s birth.
- Bringing in of a live tree had been to give wood spirits a warm place in the cold Winter months with bells hung on branches to tell whether an appreciative spirit was there. Food was also hung for the spirits to eat.
- A 5-pointed star (pentagon) was placed on top to represent the five elements coming to represent the star signalling Christ’s birth and then being replaced by an angel.
It was Pope Julius 1 who appropriated this well-established Solstice feast time hoping to replace it with a Christian one, Christ’s birth – Christmas.
Quite a few then – and that’s not all. Perhaps you know of some others and could share. Or perhaps you do not agree that today’s celebration stalwarts were ‘borrowed’. Please share your views, And thank you for reading mine.