Yule/Winter Solstice is celebrated during winter, the darkest, coldest time of the year. European traditions celebrate this holiday with holly, evergreens, bayberry, and the Yule log. In Native American traditions, Yule is a time of waiting, darkness, defeat, and trouble. Like their Celtic brethren, the Native American people wait for spring to bring back warmth and light. Since the weather is generally unpleasant, families often find themselves in close quarters with one another. This makes Yule the perfect time to celebrate family, friends, and togetherness.
Decorate your altar with red and green, using evergreen branches and holly berries. Burn incense reminiscent of home and family, like cinnamon, bay, nutmeg, and allspice. Since light is scarce and fleeting during winter, light lots of candles and build a fire to push back the dark. Enjoying hearty warm meals and good conversations are great ways to celebrate the closeness of family. Sharing pleasant memories while gathered before a roaring fire will make the wait for spring go faster. Meditations on the importance of family are appropriate at this time of year.
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