The Winter Solstice marks the shortest day of the year in the Northern Hemisphere as well as the first day of winter. It occurs between December 20th and 23rd of each year. This year, it will take place on Sunday, 12/21 at 3:03PM Pacific Time.
The Solstice occurs when the sun reaches its most southern point in the sky, over the Tropic of Capricorn in the southern hemisphere. In this position, it is also the summer solstice in the southern hemisphere and the longest day of the year there.
The Winter Solstice marks the return of the light. Since our Summer Solstice on June 21st, we have had a few less minutes of sunlight every day. The sun rises a little later and sets a little bit earlier after the summer solstice. This will all change on Sunday. Starting Monday morning, the sun will rise a few minutes earlier and set a few minutes later each day. Since it is such a small fraction of time, we won’t be able to notice it until late January, early February. The shortest days of the year will be over soon (Assuming you are reading this from the northern hemisphere).
The Winter Solstice has been celebrated by people throughout the ages and in many different cultures and traditions. Ancient cultures built huge monuments, which were designed to align perfectly with the sun during the solstices and the equinoxes (the days in spring and fall that mark the midpoints between the solstices when day and night are equal.) Some examples are Stonehenge, the Pyramids of Giza and Machu Picchu.
The sun, which is the source of all light and life on our planet, was worshiped in many ancient cultures and religions and the solstices and equinoxes were causes of celebrations and ritual around the globe. Many traditions still celebrate these solar holidays to date. The winter solstice is considered the rebirth of the sun and the light. It is a great time to shed the old, and bring in the new.
I like to celebrate the solstice by reviewing my year, seeing what is no longer serving me and what I want to bring into existence in the next 6 months as the sun moves back into our hemisphere to it’s northern most point.
This solstice, I intend to release the following tendencies:
– Fear and anxiety about an unknown and uncertain future
– Trying to control situations over which I have no control
– Getting caught in downward spirals
I would like to nurture and grow:
– Acceptance of what is in each moment
– Being completely present and immersed in the now
– Feelings of joy, love and gratitude in my heart that I happily share with others.
What are you ready to release and what seeds would you like to plant this solstice?
Please scroll down to comment and let me know.
© Copyright 2014 Vanessa Naja/Holistic Moving