As the Sun enters Capricorn this evening here in Northern America at 9:30 pm PST/12:30 am EST, we enter one of the highest energetic times or gates of the year, the Winter Solstice. A day that has been celebrated from ancient times as a commemoration to the end of the dark, long nights and the welcoming of the light. For three days after the winter solstice the sun symbolically stands still, and by Dec 25th it resumes its forward movement, now blessed with the additional light and its potential.
In ancient celebrations and the esoteric traditions, this time between Dec 17-Jan 6, roughly, coincided with the birth of the Sun gods (Mithra) and/or the festival of Lights (Hanukkah). With Christianity’s influence we have the birth of Jesus (the Son of God) on Dec 25th and the 12 days following Christmas leading to Epiphany. There is no clear cut date where one tradition stops and another starts, so please keep an open mind when you look into the influence of such customs on modern society as well as the symbolism.
What is important though to consider with regards to the Solstice celebration is that as it embodies the darkest night of the year in anticipation of the light, it is the perfect time to stand still, whether literally or figuratively, and ponder on this darkness however you understand it, so that by the time the wheel starts turning toward the light once more, to move ahead in a new way.
Also, please consider that the light symbolically is also the light in the heart, the Love principle within, which can be accessed primarily through stillness, and meditation, and thus the “going within” prompt during these days. As you tune in to this light within, you can then bring it with you and shine it forward in all your endeavors.
The following ancient prayer found in the Vedas encapsulates the significance of the Winter Solstice:
Lead us Oh Lord,
from darkness to light,
from the unreal to the real,
from death to immortality,
from chaos to beauty.
May you have a blessed one!