Tag Archives: pagan

Our First Winter Solstice

I know that I mentioned Winter Solstice yesterday but I decided to write more in depth about it today because I am seriously so excited to get rid of Christmas and start a lifetime of celebrating Solstice. I think that we might even start celebrating Midsummer as well.

Since I decided so late in the game to celebrate Winter Solstice and not Christmas, both P and I had to work yesterday and today. We were ok with it but *hopefully* by some miracle he will be home on R&R for Winter Solstice next year because I am already planning what I want to do. More on that later, back to this year. We cooked dinner together, ate together and spent time with each other. We added 2 more strands of lights to the tree to symbolize the days getting longer and light coming back to the earth. We are horrible at keeping gifts from each other so P only had one gift to open. Again, that was ok with us because we pretty much buy whatever we want throughout the year. Also, our anniversary gifts mean more to us than what we buy for other holidays….we’re weird like that 🙂

We “adopted” a polar bear (part of our giving back) by giving money to an organization that fights to preserve the Arctic and decrease the greenhouse effect. We also “adopted” a penguin for P’s son from the same organization. Part of Winter Solstice, for us, is giving back to the environment/nature in some way so this is how we chose to do it this year. The focus on on nature and our relationship to it is something that drew me to celebrate Winter Solstice. I am Christian and grew up in a very conservative Christian environment. The focus was never on the physical world/home but our eternal spiritual home. Even now much of what I hear from very conservative Christians is the attitude of “We don’t need to worry about this world” regarding environmental issues, recycling, carbon footprint, etc. I never understood nor do I currently understand that thinking. My belief is and always has been that God made this earth for us and we should take of it. We should try to make it better place both physically-less pollution, recycle, lower carbon footprint-as well as morally-human rights, ending world hunger, stopping genocide-because God entrusted this world to us. To me, I see the Earth as a gift from God and therefore I need to take care of it to the best of my ability. I’ve always felt more spiritually touched when seeing a beautiful sunset; climbing a mountain; walking through a beautiful forest; or sitting on a beach listening to the ocean, rather than sitting in a church listening to someone speak. I see God in nature all the time, so to me celebrating the Solstices make sense. Spending time to appreciate my family, friends and Earth makes complete sense to me. In the future I want to spend time outdoors, appreciating nature on Winter Solstice (this year we did it 2 days before).

I also love the accepting, open thinking that surrounds the celebrations. This will be my guide for celebrating in the future. I love the idea of learning about how it was celebrated in old Ireland (P is half Irish) and teaching our children about their ancestry. It’s even made me think about tracing my own ancestry so that I can teach my children about that half of their ancestry. P and I have even discussed not having Santa Claus in our home at all when we have children. We obviously have a bit of time to decide what to do with that, though. I know that for us, I think that I want to do the gift giving differently next year. Maybe focus on natural gifts, gifts related to learning/science, crafts from local artists, etc. I also know that if our parents want us to celebrate Christmas with them as a family when we are there, we will do it. Our parents have waited a long time to be grandparents, they deserve to celebrate whatever holiday they want when they have their grandchildren with them.

For me, the most important part of Winter Solstice is that it’s not Christmas. I don’t mean that in a bitchy way at all and I don’t think that those who celebrate Christmas are wrong. I feel at peace and non-conflicted now about the holiday that I am celebrating. It has also made me think more deeply about what I need to do to make the world a better place, both physically and morally. It has made me remember that we are connected to nature and can have a positive or negative effect on it. It reminded me to stay in the present and focus on having P with me this year, rather than focusing on the fact that I won’t have him here next year.

To some it might be weird that a Catholic guy and a Protestant gal are celebrating a Pagan holiday but it fits us perfectly 🙂

6 Comments

Filed under Uncategorized

No more Christmas for us

I’ve also had issues with celebrating “Christmas”. I grew up in a home and in a church that didn’t recognize it as a religious holiday, so calling it that and even celebrating it has seemed weird to me as an adult. We didn’t celebrate as a religious holiday for many reasons and it has always irked me when people refer to Jesus as the real reason for the season and act like I’m wrong for NOT celebrating Jesus’s birthday (of course we clal nkow that he wasn’t born in December). I think what has always gotten to me the most is that Christmas, or Christ-Mass, is a Christian made holiday to help convince Pagans to convert. Basically, the church stole the holiday frmo the Pagans.

After much thought and talking with Pagan friends of mine, P and I are now celebrating Winter Solsitce instead. We will continue to celebrate this holiday rather than Christmas and we will pass it on to our future children and grandchildren. I plan to teach them about the origins and traditions as well as research any traditions that might be specifc to Celtics. I found this Winter Solstice celebration guide from circlesanctuary.org and MoonChildren has several different links about Winter Solstice, the celebrations, the origins, and all that jazz. When looking at the origins and celebrations last night, I realized that THIS, not the C word is the holiday for us. I am already planning our Solstice celebrations, including giving something back. We will be donating to an environmental group as part of our giving back this year. I want to do the candle ceremony, the wreath, the yule log if possible and most everything listed on the celebration page.

I am also researching about being Christian and Pagan or if that is even possible. I am so interested in Paganism, its beliefs, origins and traditions. I have been referred to some great books that I plan to possibly buy so that I can learn more. I’ve been interested in Paganism for a long time, just have never taken the time to actually research it enough.

So, I hope all of my blog readers have a wonderful Winter Solstice and I promise to post more about our celebrations when we have them 🙂

5 Comments

Filed under Uncategorized

Wordless Wednesday

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized