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Winter Holidays - Solstice

Updated on September 11, 2016
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Kim has many hubs on entertainment especially on movies, and actors she wrote for Squidoo and now has her own blog

Disclaimer

I have put this together the best I can and is a colaboration with friends and anyone who wanted to put their 2 cents in; besides of course my own input of what I know and researched. I've tried to have someone that celebrates each holiday to do a paragraph or 2 as its always better explained by those who celebrate and believe in it.

Season's Greetings

A lot of people wish me Merry Christmas, and in England they say Happy Christmas... but NOT EVERYONE CELEBRATES CHRISTMAS. Some celebrate, Kwanzaa others Solstice, Yule or Candlemas, Hanukkah and whatever other holidays there are & that doesn't count the double titled holidays where they celebrate Christmas & Hanukkah etc.

Whatever other holidays there are around this time, if you celebrate it I'd like to know what its called & if you would please add a few paragraphs of what its about, & how you celebrate, the day its on and so on.

Sadly I do not know of anyone who celebrates Kwanzaa so if you are reading this, and you do Please PM me!

"Supporters of using the term Holidays, in place of Christmas were originally syncretized (the combining of different belifes and practices) i> They were stolen or twisted by those who made the religion and bent them to their agenda. "Christmas" symbols such as Trees, Caroling, Holly wreaths, Mistletoe, & Yule Logs are all Pre -christian (Pagan) symbols of the solstice. There's also argument that as society religiously and culturally diverseifies that a secretarian Holiday such as christmas may be non-inclucive, or offensive to non-christian and non-celebraants in general Christmas Controversey

If you do not know someone's religion, simpy say Happy Holiday(s), it covers one or as many religious backgrounds as their family has, Plus includes the New Year which I've also included a bit for here as well.

If I have missed covering any other holidays' please let me know by PM what it is

"I am Sick & tired of the 'keeping Christ in Christmas' argument."

If you look up the history of christmas,you will learn that it was originally derived from various pagan holidays that had NOTHING to do with christianity.

-Amy Gamboa of ManhattanQuote from NY Daily Newspaper on 'Keeping Christ in Christmas'

Yule

“Yule” comes from the Ænglisc “Gēola”, which refers to the winter solstice, which is celebrated between the 21st and 23rd of December. Another festival was celebrated later on the 24th called Mother's night or Mōdraniht and believed to be a time of sacrifice to the “Ides” (or Dísir (women ghosts) in Old Norse), a term meaning “noble woman” or “goddess”.This was celebrated not only by the Norse, but the north-western pre-christian germanic tribes

Traditional customs such as the Yule log, the decorated tree, and wassailing can all be traced back to Norse origins.

All about Yule (a variety of links on the topic)

The Solstice~ The Shortest Day


The Shortest Day -?

And so the Shortest Day came and the year died
And everywhere down the centuries of the snow-white world
Came people singing, dancing,
To drive the dark away.
They lighted candles in the winter trees;
They hung their homes with evergreen;
They burned beseeching fires all night long
To keep the year alive.
And when the new year's sunshine blazed awake
They shouted, revelling.
Through all the frosty ages you can hear them
Echoing behind us - listen!
All the long echoes, sing the same delight,
This Shortest Day,
As promise wakens in the sleeping land:
They carol, feast, give thanks,
And dearly love their friends,
And hope for peace.
And now so do we, here, now,
This year and every year.”

Winter Solstice

This holiday falls between December 21st & 23rd depending on the Solar calendar.

Wiccans and Pagans celebrate the Winter Solstice or Midwinter Sabbat which celebrates the birth of the sun god from the earth Goddess.

In ancient times they were celebrated on the 25th of December, however with the integration of the Julian calendar & messing up time it now falls on the 21st as its the longest days and the start of the coming renewal of the land. The holiday was usually celebrated for 12 days (could this be where the 12 days of Christmas came from maybe it should be renamed Paganmas)

Pre-Christianity

The Norse celebrate Jol or Yule

Yule Cat

Winter Solstice

The Yule Log is a symbol of the bonfires pagans would set to symbolize the coming of the sun. Any type of wood can be used, but you may want to check out this list for what you want it to signify.

Oak: Brings healing Strength and wisdom

Holly:inspires visions and reveals past lives

Birch: for new beggingings

Willow: to achieve desires

Aspen:Understanding of the Grand Design

Pine: Prosperity and growth

On Yule Night Carve a symbol of your hopes for the coming year into the log, burning the log releases its power and save a piece from this years Yule log for next years kindling. The yule log is usually decorated with Ribbon, flowers and greenery as well as herbs for magical intent, for instance use White sage for a cleansing of the old year coming into the new year.

Some of the herbs and such you may want to use...

Cedar- waelth protection purification healing & promoting spirituality

Carnations- COurage, Strength Protection Healing Vitality increases Magical power.

Cinnamon- Love

Cloves- fertility

Corriander seeds- love

Holly- Protection & dreams

Juniper- Exorcism love healing and protection

Lavender- Love awakener

Mistletoe- health fertility, success banishing Evil, Protection

Pine- Healing wealth protection fertility purification Exorcism

Rosemary- Health love protection increase intellectual powers, peace blessing, consecrations, very powerful cleansing, & purifying Exorcism

Roses- Love courage luck health protection beauty

Ribbons- use according to their corresponding magic color

Winter by Alfred Lord Tennyson

Winter by Alfred Lord Tennyson
Winter by Alfred Lord Tennyson

Holiday Scents

scents in various forms, from spices, you can toss in the fire, to scented oils and so on.

if it's a spice more likely you can use it in the fire, besides of course your holiday meals!

  • Cinnamon
  • Pinecones

    (toss in fire) but be sure the grate is over the fire

  • rosemary, cinnamon sticks,
  • (dried) orange peel for kindling, as the oil in it, helps it to burn longer
  • cloves,
  • nutmeg,
  • incense sticks or cones (in Pine, cinnamon or apple cinnamon spice,) Tho' they will burn quickly
  • Rainbow flame matches/sticks or powder (I don't remember what it was, but I remember my uncle putting this in the fire & the flames turning a variety of colors. (not sure if it had a scent but was a bit entertaining at least when a child, not sure about now, thjo I do like to watch a candleflame dance)
  • Java-log (made of recycled coffee grounds) it emits up to 78% less carbon monoxide & 66% less creosote then wood fires
  • gingerbread
  • sugarcookies
  • Orange w/ Cloves (can be made as tree ornament or just for the fruit bowl)


More Yule and Solstice gifts on Amazon.com Widgets

Candlemas

Candlemas is a time, when people are initiated, into wiccan covens & each group's outlook depends on the exact or important meaning of each holiday as well.

Special Christmas Postmark

Special Christmas Postmark
Special Christmas Postmark

Other December Holidays from around the world

  • Finland -December 6 Independence Day
  • Kenya- December 12 Jamuhuri Day
  • Bangladesh- December 16 Victory Day
  • Saturnalia december 17-23 (ancient Romans)
  • Austria, & Liechtenstein, Luxemberg -

    Dec 25th Christmas

    Dec 26 St. Stephen's Day

  • Dominican Republic- Dec 5 Discovery Day Commemorating the arrival of Christopher Columbus (& I don't mean the director)
  • Canada , Uganda Gibraltar Antigua & Barbuda

    December 24th

    December 25th Christmas

    December 26th Boxing Day

  • Channel Islands December 15 Homecoming Day (Alderney)
  • Albania - Dec 8 Public Youth Day

    Dec 25 Midwinter Christmas

  • Argentina- Dec 8 Immaulate Conception

    Dec 24 Christmas Eve

    25th Christmas day

  • Armenia- Dec 7 Spitak Rememberence Day
  • Australia Australia Holidays

Holidays by Country List

Boxing Day Dec. 26th

No not that kind though it may sometimes come close!

From what has been explained to me, the day after christmas is the day others box up and return their unwanted, to big or small and so on gifts. To the store and with some families who buy all from one store, it can turn out to be 1 large box of other boxes! Not to mention boxing matches to grab on the items you want or to just get your money back.

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