Winter Solstice is a favorite holiday for many people. It coincides with the secular holiday season so its easy to get in the mood of celebrating. Unlike lesser known holidays around the wheel of the year, decorations are similar and everyone is in the mood to share food, drinks and camaraderie. For those of us that follow the wheel of the year, Winter Solstice marks the end of the waning of the sun. Winter Solstice falls somewhere between December 20th and 22nd. This year, 2022, it is on December 21st. For the last six months the sun has been giving us less daylight hours and we experience more darkness. At the turn of the Winter Solstice, we get to experience more daylight each day as we work our way towards the Summer Solstice, the peak of daylight. You could think of this time of year as similar to a new moon in the lunar cycle.
Celebrating the wheel of the year for more 20 years, I have learned a lot about what it means to live in the seasonal moment. Sometimes those celebrations are quiet solo experiences, sometimes they are giant potlucks with lots of friends. This time of year, our animal bodies yearn for quiet moments, with warm food and familiar loved ones. This desire for hibernation is in conflict with the cultural norm of rushing to find gifts, lots of parties and gathering with friends and family. Know that the pull to rest is normal, if not culturally supported.
This is the season of rest, restoration and calm. This side of the wheel of the year is the introverted side or also known as the darkside of the year. It is actually in direct conflict with our rushing, busy secular holiday season. So feel free to listen to your animal body this year and take it slow. Give yourself permission to sleep in, to take naps and do restorative practices.
Below are a few tips that you might like to incorporate into your winter solstice celebrations.
Work in time with the energies of the season- Rest, introspection, quiet meditation, inner work.
Incorporate seasonal colors into decorations and altars- Red, Green and Blue
Work with crystals/stones that support the our bodies through season - clear quartz, ruby, garnet, green tourmaline, kunzite, and citrine.
Incorporate herbs of this time of year- Elder, Cinnamon, clove, nutmeg, chamomile, pine, cranberry, oranges, and hawthorn (berries and leaves.)
Explore crafts ideas that remind us of the natural aspects of this season-
Winter Solstice Suns, Herbal Holly Wreath, Knitting/Weaving.
It is common for people to use food as a way to mark a special event. Share a meal on December 21st with close friends and family. Here is a menu suggestion. Winter Solstice Feast
Brussels sprouts and butter
Roasted mashed potatoes
Roasted turkey with herb stuffing/Tofurky
Homemade wheat rolls with sage
Creating a ritual to mark this passage of time into the season of light, can help you harness your intended direction as you move into the new season. This ritual can be used solitary or in a group setting. Adapt the parts that work for you and change anythings that nourishes you more richly.
Winter Solstice Ritual
Create a sacred space Call on Spiritual Guides and Guardians
Write on piece of paper-
In 2022, I learned that I need….
In 2022, I am proud that I…..
In 2023, I commit to healing…..
In 2023, I will care for myself by.....
Then burn this paper in a fire, while calling on your patron Goddess, Spiritual Ally or natural element.
Dear Goddess, Spiritual Ally or Element. I thank you for all the blessings I have received from you in the past. Please hear my pleas for greater understanding, strength and fortitude as we move into 2023. Release any elements or ancestors you called to your circle. Ground and center yourself.
Enjoy this season of warmth, connection and care. If you are in a position to share with others less fortunate, donate, buy gifts and send money to non-profits. Community care is what will get us all through these tumultuous times. Check out Weaving Spirit and Magic through the Seasons for more information about seasonal practices through a year-long online course. Schedule a private coaching session with Karin here. Blessing to all.
Karin Olsen is a healer, a seer and a teacher. Her experience includes studying plants for more than 20 years, owning an herb shop and metaphysical store for 15 years. She has been a massage therapist for over 25 years. Karin learned her psychic medium skills from her mother and sees clients via zoom. She teaches classes on earth-based spirituality through Moonhill Mystery School in the Salish Sea area. In 2021 she earned a Master of Ecopsychology from Naropa University. Go to www,moonhillnysteryschool.com to learn more about her classes and events.