I’ve just arrived home from my Circle’s Yule Celebration and potluck, and I’m trying desperately to finish writing this blog post before succumbing to a food coma. So if I start to ramble, please forgive me.
This year, my husband and I decided to celebrate Yule, or Winter Solstice, instead of Christmas. For many years, we’ve celebrated both, partly because of family visiting, and partly because of the societal hubbub that surrounds Christmas. It has become a very commercialized holiday, and I’m tired of that aspect of it.
I’m also tired of the “political correct” arguments about whether or not to wish someone a Merry Christmas. From people arguing that we have to put Christ back in Christmas, to those who say we can’t offend anyone of different religious beliefs, to those who would rather “Bah humbug!” and be done with it, I say it doesn’t really matter.
If you look at all the major holidays that fall around this time of year, they have one thing in common: light. In the northern hemisphere, it’s been getting noticeably darker – the days have been getting shorter. With the shorter days comes colder weather. This fact did not escape our ancestors. Around this time of year, even if we don’t notice it right away (like the 4 days between the Winter Solstice and Christmas, perhaps?) the days start getting longer again.
If you were dependent on the warmth of the longer days to feed yourself and your family, you’d be pretty happy about the days starting to get longer. It would definitely be a cause for celebration. You’d get together with your friends and family and feast and give each other presents because you were so grateful its not going to be dark forever. Maybe you’d even start getting together a little before the Winter Solstice, lighting candles and praying for the light to return because, hey, it couldn’t hurt, right?
I know, I’m over-generalizing all the holidays. We really are celebrating for many of the same reasons, though. So if someone says, “Merry Christmas!” to me, I’m not going to get upset about it. They are wishing me the same thing as Happy Hanukkah or Blessed Yule in their language. I’ll say it right back to them in their language. Because it is not as important to me to be “right” as it is to spread more love and joy and light at this dark time of the year. The words themselves are not as important as the meaning behind them.
So whether you celebrate Hanukkah, or Christmas, or Yule, or something else, or none of the above – I wish you peace, love, joy and infinite blessings. I wish you light.
PS. Last chance to enter the Pin It to Win It contest! I’ll be drawing soon…