For those among us who follow a Wiccan or other Pagan spiritual path, this time of year means that we're getting ready to celebrate our own festive season, usually marked as Yule and/or the Winter Solstice (which is also my birthday, 21st December!).
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The Mother [aspect of the Goddess] assumes her role at Beltane, when she weds the Horned God with whom she has dallied as the Maiden since Oestara. As all-mother, she then reigns with her consort the God-King over the year’s planting, growing, and harvesting. Her impregnation by him at Oestara is brought to fruition at Yule when she delivers the young Horned God who will replace his sacrificed father. After giving birth to the Horned God, the Mother enters a time of retreat and transformation in the underworld as the Crone.
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Yule is when the dark half of the year relinquishes to the light half. Starting the next morning at sunrise, the sun climbs just a little higher and stays a little longer in the sky each day. Known as Solstice Night, or the longest night of the year, much celebration was to be had as the ancestors awaited the rebirth of the Oak King, the Sun King, the Giver of Life that warmed the frozen Earth and made her to bear forth from seeds protected through the fall and winter in her womb. Bonfires were lit in the fields, and crops and trees were "wassailed" with toasts of spiced cider.
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Yule is a Sabbat that reflects the return of the sun, so add solar symbols to your altar. Gold discs, yellow candles, anything bright and shiny can represent the sun. Some people even get a large pillar candle, inscribe it with solar symbols, and designate it as their sun candle. You can also add evergreen boughs, sprigs of holly, pinecones, a Yule log, and even Santa Claus. Consider antlers or reindeer, along with other symbols of fertility.
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You can find out more about the Pagan Wheel of the Year here
. Even if you don't follow a Pagan path, the rich and vibrant lore can serve as a great source of inspiration.
Brightest blessings, deviant friends!
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