How to Celebrate Yuletide as a Witch

Winter is an introspective period, which allows us to internalize and meditate on our actions, on our past and on our future. The festivals of Yule (from the Old Norse: Júl) are celebrated every winter solstice. This was a celebration of the Nordic people, related to Germanic mythology and Nordic paganism. In the northern hemisphere, Yule is celebrated around December 21, and in the southern hemisphere, around June 21. The pagan festival of Yule has its origins in pre-Christian Scandinavia. It was mainly a family feast dedicated to fertility and reunion of the family. During this festival, dead family members are remembered. This party is organized in splendor and magnificence around the graves of the deceased relatives. It is also a period to show love and hospitality to strangers too. “We put lights on our entrances and porches and on the roofs of our garages to scare away the darkness. We celebrate THE RENAISSANCE OF LIGHT on the longest night of the year. The winter solstice is a time to gather, for love, peace, goodwill and, more importantly, for FORGIVENESS. In this austere and cold season, we use branches and foliage to symbolize life; bright colors, images of rich harvests and mountains of gifts to ward off hardship or fear of it “ ——–   Cerridwen Iris Shea  

Celebration of Yuletide

Symbolically speaking and in accordance with Neopagan traditions, Yule represents the rebirth of God after his death in Samhain and it is the first seasonal ritual of the Wheel of the year, the 8 Sabbats, which correspond to solar feasts: Yule, Imbolc, Ostara , Beltane , Litha , Lugnasah, Mabon and Samhain . During this time, nature is asleep so that is why it is a perfect time to meditate, recollect and make plans for the new year. Yule is expected to last for twelve days which represents the twelve months of the year. During the corresponding TWELVE nights, the dead ones  appear in different forms to visit their relatives.  This is a time for religious-level initiations, whose necessary elements are constituted by the extinction and renewal of fire.     The main ritual performed in the Yule period is the ritual burning of the Yule log for 12 hours. This log is a large trunk commonly made of pine or willow, cut in the previous Yule and carefully guarded. The entire ritual is directed by the druid or dryad priest in charge of the celebration. The trunk is specially selected by the druid, who communicates with the trees to ask for their permission and know which log would be perfect for use. Later on, sacred symbols of rebirth, male figures and the sun are carved on it. In Druidism, the Yule also means the time of the greatest amount of energetic power so magical rituals performed at this time are usually very powerful.

CORRESPONDENCES

Colors: Red / Green / Gold / Silver / White Symbols
  • Rebirth of the God
  • The longest night of the year
Work:
  • Plan for the future
  • Reborn
  • Peace, Harmony, Love, Happiness, Light.
Incenses and oils:
  • Cedar
  • Cinnamon
  • Clove
  • Incense
  • Juniper
  • Myrrh
  • Orange
  • Pine
  • Ginger
Herbs :
  • Laurel
  • thistle
  • juniper
  • oranges
  • lemons
  • chamomile
  • cinnamon
  • evergreen trees
  • holly
  • ivy
  • juniper
  • mistletoe
  • oak leaves
  • pine pine
  • cones
  • poinsettia
  • rosemary
  • sage
Stones:
  • Emerald
  • Ruby
  • Diamond
  • garnets
  • tiger eye
  • zirconia
Food:   Nuts and fruits such as; apples, pears, caraway cakes soaked in cider, the famous Yule trunk. Traditions:
  • Decorate the Yule tree
  • Burn the trunk of Yule
  • Make crowns and pentacles for the protection of homes
  • Perform Spells of prosperity and mention all your requests.
Gods: 
  • Apollo
  • Attis
  • Balder
  • Bacchus
  • Dionysus
  • The Green Man
  • Helios
  • Lugh
  • The King of Oak
  • Wotan
  • Ra
  • Sun
Goddesses:
  • Brighid
  • Isis
  • Demeter
  • Gaia
  • Diana
  • The Great Mother
  • Athena
  • Freya
  • Frigga
  Ritual Bath:
  • Pine branches
  • Laurel
  • Leaves Rosemary leaves
  Simple Decoration for Yule:
  • – Decorate the houses with ivy inside and holly and mistletoe outside to protect themselves from unwanted visits
  • – Decorate with red and green colors. The red color symbolizes birth while green is a symbol of the earth.

THE CHRISTMAS TREE

This is a custom inherited from the Celtic people who were known for burning a tree trunk on the  night of solstice, to celebrate the rebirth of the sun and to attract prosperity. When the Celts adopted this custom, around 1100 BC, they collected a log after solstice and kept it. A few days before the festival, they decorated it with pineapples, holly, ivy and other evergreen plants. These adorned trees are placed in the home, so that all the members of the family could touch it and leave treats and gifts.  The log was lit on the night of the solstice (it was usually the mother who sets the fire) then it is allowed to burn slowly. After everything had been burnt, the ashes were taken and kept as a sacred substance which could be used to cure diseases.  Some charred remnants were kept and used to light the fire of the following year’s log. Sources
  • https://www .taste of home. com/ collection/ how -to-make-a-yule-log/view-all/
  • https://www.thoughtco.com/make-a-yule-log-2563006
  • http://www.circulodebrujas.com/sabats/yule/
  • https://es.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yule
  • https://blog.  hellofresh  .co.uk/christmas-baking/
  • http://www.souland  spiritmagazine. com/the-magic-of -yule-with-white-witch-patricia-weston/
  • https://www.elbloga lternativo. com/2010/12/18/yule- solsticio-de -invierno-la-noche-mas-larga-del-ano/

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