Confront darkness at winter solstice
This originally appeared in The Inquirer, Issue 8001
The winter solstice, a celebration of the shortest day, when the suns seems to be standing still over the Tropic of Capricorn before turning to push its light and warmth back towards the north. It was a time for lighting fires to encourage the sun to begin its return journey. Yule is a celebration of light and the evergreens. The Norse goddess Frigda was said to weave the fates of a person’s life into a ring and from that we have the tradition of the wreath placed on the door of the house. Holly and Ivy were also brought into the house, so too was a young tree, as a place for the forest sprite to stay. The exchange of gifts came from the Roman feast of Saturnalia. Not only were gifts exchanged, so too were places. The master waited on the servant. The slave became the master. People dressed up as the opposite
sex. This lives on in the tradition of the pantomime, a fairy tale story where the Principal Boy is played by a girl and the female villain by a man.
Worship Words Licence
YOU ARE FREE TO:
– copy and redistribute the material in any medium or format.
– adapt, change and build upon the material for any purpose.
The licensor cannot revoke these freedoms as long as you follow the licence terms.
UNDER THE FOLLOWING TERMS:
You must give appropriate credit in a reasonable manner. This means naming the author (if supplied), stating the title of the work (if supplied), and indicating if changes were made. This will not be in a way that suggests the author endorses you or your use.
You may not apply terms that restrict others from sharing the material in a way that the licence permits.
You do not have to comply with the licence for elements of the material in the public domain or where your use is permitted by an applicable exception or limitation.
No warranties are given, the licence may not give you all of the permissions necessary for your intended use. For example, other rights such as publicity, privacy, or moral rights may limit how you use the material.