Alright, so the decorations are up, presents wrapped, baking done and you find yourself sitting there on December 21st wondering how you can celebrate Yule as a separate occasion from the Christmas season being displayed all around you. How do you recognize and honor your pagan roots? Some of us live in multi-faith households or have family in our homes that are of different paths. The majority of us grew up in Christian households, and is trying to carry on family traditions that included those traditions while still honoring our own personal practices. This is a hard line to walk. Just because we are not Christian and follow our own path does not mean that we want to dishonor those we are close to and their beliefs. So somehow, the season becomes this mixture of all the above and finding the true meaning of the season becomes a personal discussion we have within our own heads. Some things we do can be symbolic of our own beliefs on a personal level but appear to others as just an ordinary Christmas tradition, such as the Yule log cake.
Within my family, there is support but not a huge amount of understanding. I also understand and support the Christian traditions that are accustom here and that I grew up with. Therefore, I think the mutual respect shown gives a fair field for us to support each other rather full understanding is acquired or not. Because my family is open minded, they are becoming more and more understanding simply because they do not shut themselves off from learning my ways. I have hosted several Christmas dinners in my home because I respect the people I love and their beliefs. However, a few days before the 25th, I also honor my own beliefs in Yule ritual. There has been times this has been done alone and other times it is done as a family. Either way, it is done and it doesn’t have to be an elaborate event.
Here is a simple Yule ritual I offer to you:
What you will need: ( you can use our previous blog on Yule Correspondences for help if needed)
Collect a log of your choice. This doesn’t have to be a tree you go cut down, don’t make it too hard. However, put thought into it. Make an educated choice in the wood you may choose for your log and the properties that wood has. If you already have a log that you collected and decorated through the season, now would be the time to put that log to use.
2 pieces of paper and pen
Matches or a lighter
Herbs of your choice/ Cynnamon Charmed Yule Herbal Blend
-Create your sacred space and call your deity as your tradition suggests
-Center and ground yourself
- Think about the cycle of the sun and then meditate on the traditions you follow regarding the Yule season....For example: its history, the story of the holly king vs. oak king, The cycle of life from birth, to Fool, to Lover, to Hunter, etc. Whatever emphasis your tradition puts upon the Yule season, now is the time to honor that by remembering and offering thanks for all the Sun provides us through the year: light, warmth, energy, life, etc.
-Start a fire. This can be a fire in your fireplace or outside in a fire pit. IF you are really short on space you could use wood shavings rather than an entire log and start the fire in your personal cauldron
- As the fire starts and grows meditate on the previous year. Think of all that you have gone through and accomplished. All the ups and the downs. Mediate on all areas that affected you this past year: family, career, love life, health, etc. When you are ready write down on one piece of paper all that which did not serve you well last year.
-As the fire really catches hold and begins to take off, and you have finished writing, cast your paper into the fire…..releasing all these things that you don’t want to carry forward. Right here and right now you are giving them up and giving up the hold that they have had over you. As they burn you feel their burden ease off your chest and release you.
-Now that you are over the past year you sit in the present anew and ready for the future. Ready for the next year, the next Sun cycle. You have hope for the future and anticipate the return of light in the sky and in your life.
- As the fire begins to wane, meditate on what the next year may hold. What are you looking forward to? What are your hopes? ….your goals? Now write them all down on the last paper. Thinking on all you would have manifest in the year to come.
- When you are complete sit with your paper and mediate. Visualize how all of what you listed would play out like a movie in your head. Be sure to include all the details of what this would look like in your life and affect those even around you. As you build energy for the future cast this paper into the fire.
-You have just manifested your goals for the New Year. Be sure to journal throughout the year so you can look back and see how they unfolded according to your will today.
-Now thank the God/Goddess and throw in your herbs of choice or Yule Blend as offering.
- Be sure to close your sacred space as your tradition suggest.
- Blessed Yule!