Yule

This popped up on my memories on FB this morning, so I thought I’d share. It’s as true today as it was 5 years ago.

I’ve been asked about my religion on many occasions, but until now I have just brushed over the subject. I describe myself as a neo-pagan. Mainly because I am a modern human being and not ancient, and secondly because the word Pagan is the word used by the early Christians to describe those who did not follow Christ, including Jews, Muslims, Celts, Wiccan, etc.
On the whole, like many others I like to mark the turning of the year. Christians do it with Christmas, Jews with Hanukkah, and Hindus with Diwali. The strange thing is we all do it with a Festival of Light. Yule is just that. It is set on the Winter Solstice, the shortest day of the year.
Let’s look at this another way. Way back in the time that history has forgotten there were mathematicians and astronomers. They all took great pride in knowing what was going to happen when, and they made up these things called Horrorscopes. No I didn’t spell it wrong. I’m digressing, what these scholars noticed was that the relationship between the Earth and the Sun changed around about this time of year and so they told the peasants, like myself, that it was the Sun God being reborn. Now I’m no fool and I know differently. But that doesn’t stop me from lighting my candles on the Yule and saying my prayers.
However, you knew there would be a big HOWEVER somewhere, there always is with me. However, I don’t believe we are ruled, should fear, love nor worship some being that no one has ever seen. I don’t count visions. I don’t believe in Immaculate Conception, moving mountains nor flying monkeys. If that’s what you want to believe, then go ahead, I’m not going to stop you. All I ask is don’t look down on me nor on anyone else who doesn’t believe in fairies, erh, uhm, angels.
So today it will be a normal day for most but for me it will be a Festival of Light. Candles will be lit. Three to be precise. A white candle for purity, for the birth of the new Sun. A red candle for the fertility the Sun will bring to the Earth, and a black candle to banish the darkness. I know that if I don’t do this the World won’t stop and that I won’t be struck down, but I will feel empty.
My religion or if you like, my spiritual beliefs have taught me how to accept the things that happen to me and take responsibility for my own life, no matter what the consequences are. The most important thing I’ve learnt is that belief is a gift.
Those who believe in God have been given a precious gift and should treat it as such. Those who have self-belief should use it wisely. It is those who have no belief that I feel for. “They have no purpose”.
It is only now that I am wiser and that I have returned to my belief, that I understand what these words mean.
So today I wish you all a Very Happy Yule, and on the 25th I wish you all a Very Merry Christmas.
I do decorate my house with branches and winter blooms. I have lamb this year and I will light my house with candles. Am I really that different to you?

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