We shall not cease from exploration, and the end of all our exploring will be to arrive where we started, And know the place for the first time. ~T.S. Eliot Four Quartets

20 December 2006

Winter Solstice

Tommorow is the longest night of the year. We have been honouring the solstice in our house for a few years now, as a celebration of nature and the seasons. My son now understands from this day forward, the days will be getting longer and brighter, growing toward spring. I may have been raised Christian, and now proclaim to be a Buddhist, but my pagan beliefs are always there, like nature itself. Its a simple thing, to honour the seasons and the earth and many of those beliefs underlie the whole Christmas season.
Much of what the Romans did to celebrate at this time of year, resembles the activities of the non-religious side of the season which we still participate in. They celebrated the solstice as Saturnalia, a winter fair of enormous proportions as well as a festival of the home. Houses were decorated with laurel and evergreen trees, lamps & candles were kept lit to ward off evil spirits, and friends visited one another’s homes bringing gifts such as cake, jewellery, candles and incense for good luck. Giant feasts of food were also involved. Not unlike what we do today!! So happy winter solstice.

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