Merry Yule Tide!

Now that the Christmas Shopping Season is finally over for a few months, we can focus on the beauty and magic of the Yule Tide, the turning of the Wheel.  Because the Earth’s axis is tilted, we have seasons.  Without the tilt, there would be no change in the path the Sun takes across the sky, the length of the days would always be the same.

To our distant ancestors, the possibility that the Sun would keep going further down in the sky until it never rose was a terrifying thought.  The further north you live, the more real that possibility seems, as the Sun does not rise in the Arctic right now.  Night is everlasting, or extremely long, if you live a bit further south of the Arctic.  Countries around the Baltic sea only get a few hours of sunlight this time of year.

Primitive peoples were not able to tell for sure if the Sun had begun its return for many days after the Winter Solstice, and they feared beginning their celebration of that return to early, and possibly upsetting the gods.  So Yule Tide ceremonies would not start at the Solstice, being delayed for a week or two sometimes.  So now is the time for rejoicing, for sharing good wishes, feasting together, and singing songs.

Even though the winter has just begun, there is the promise of Spring in the lengthening of the days.


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