I’m finding it a little hard to wax lyrical about the coming of winter at the moment, given that we had to turn on the overhead fans this afternoon and it’s projected to be 60 degrees on Christmas day… so I’ll let somebody else do it for me. Following the reading is a bit of the invocation that I will be offering in a few hours at our UU church.
May you all be blessed this holiday season.
The bare trees have made up their seed bundles.
They are ready now. The warm brown light pauses briefly, shrugs and moves on.
They are ready now to play dead for a while. I, human, have not as yet devised how to obtain such privilege.
Their spring will find them rested. I and my kind battle a wakeful way to ours. – Denise Levertov
There are as many different ritual cycles as there are Pagan religions; different Gods worshipped, different mythological and historical stories remembered and honored. However, whatever different Pagan faiths believe may have happened (if anything) before this life, and whatever they believe about what (if anything) may happen afterwards, one thing that we almost all agree on is that we’re here now – and that the “here” and “now” are important.
The Wheel of the Year is one response to that belief. Entirely modern, it blends ancient celebrations from various Western European cultures into a coherent whole. Celebrating the Wheel both encodes and reinforces a theology that celebrates all life as a gift of the Gods, and sees humanity as an integral part of the natural world.
And so today we light these candles – that represent both the Quarters of the Wheel and the undying Fire of the Sun – to celebrate the Winter Solstice, and its promise that the light will not continue to fail, but return… and restore the life of the Land in the Spring.
PS – I have added a couple new tracks to my Yule mix: