what is a 'solstice'?
literally means 'Standing-Still-Sun' and happens twice a year,
once in the winter and once in the summer.
winter solstice, (around 21st December) is the time of year
when we, in the northern hemisphere, have our shortest day.
occurs because the earth has a tilt and our half of the world
is leaning furthest away from the sun.
important point in the sun's cycle has been celebrated all
over the world for thousands of years.
For the Norse it was Yule, for the Romans, Saturnalia, and
it has now been Christianised into Christmas. But all of these
celebrations have the same theme in common - the rebirth of
the sun (or 'the son' in Christian terms).
is the time when the dark half of the year turns into the
light half and I often heave a sigh of relief at this time
as I can feel the energies here in Wiltshire starting to expand
and open out again.
ancestors were very keen to honour this time of the year and
designed some of their stone circles/barrows to exactly pinpoint
this turning point in the sun's journey.
is a perfect marker of both solstices and the amazing New
Grange barrow in Ireland is designed to receive a shaft of
sunlight deep into its central chamber at dawn on the winter
way in which this time is acknowledged in Wiltshire is the
by the lighting up of the white horse at Alton Barnes.
an old tradition, people gather with tea lights in jars that
are placed on the chalk so that the horse glows with candlelight.
hope the weather stays good for them this solstice!
how can you celebrate the 'return of the sun' in your home?
way is to have lots of light - fairy lights, candles and anything
else that sparkles!
theme of this time is also about people gathering together
to share food and merriment as we welcome back the sun and
the brighter time of the year.
After years of searching i finally feel like the winter festivities mean something special and not something religious.
The best place to go for the Winter Solstice has to be StoneHenge, the Stones are only open for a short though, unlike the Summer Solstice where it's open all night.
I prefer the Winter Solstice because there are less people who attend and you can get to the stones easier, rather than having to crawl over everyone like you do at the Summer.
It's well worth the trip.
I have been going now for 5 years and I never miss a Solstice....
What winter solstice celebrations are going on in 2006?
I'm thinking of visiting the area for winter solstice. Can anyone recommend where to go? Thank you
I love the winter solstice celebration! It has been my favorite since I was a little girl. Thankyou for supporting this beautiful time of year!
Blessed Be, Tammy
I enjoy reading the pages included on this site.It's comforting to know that I am not alone in celebrating the Goddess and God through nature and the Sabbats.Brightest blessings!
blessed be to all this yuletide. blessings for a bright and bountiful new year
also bright blessings thankyou
how wonderful our pagan beliefs are to be shared
what a wonderful story.sure makes sense.mrs.summer stjohn keep up the good work!
thanks ken from calgary
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