Yule is a pre-Christian holiday celebrated on the JT 1 winter solstice, which falls around Decem-ker 21. It is the true new year, both astro-^ - ^ nomically and spiritually. At this time, we see - the simultaneous death and rebirth of the Sun God, represented in the shortest day and longest night of the year. From this time forward, the sun grows in power and strength.
To our ancestors, from where our teachings come, fertility was an important aspect of daily life. As the sun is vital for growth and fertility, it is only natural that its return was celebrated with elaborate rituals and ceremonies.
Though we don't necessarily use the Sabbat rites for fertility in a physical sense, the energy is still there and can be tapped into.
Yule is the time to begin to think about what you want to accomplish in the months to come. It is the time to outline the goals you wish to work towards. As the Sabbats progress, you will refine and narrow down these goals in content and purpose. For now you want to focus your attention inward to allow your higher self or spiritual side time to clarify what needs to be done and which goals to set. Ask for guidance from the God and Goddess.
Ritual Tools/ Symbols/ and Decorations
Altar decorations: Red altar cloth, red or green altar candles, sprigs of holly tied with red and green ribbons, bayberry candle, poinsettia plant, wand tied with red and green ribbon, chalice covered with a gold cloth, red and white wine, ritual cakes.
Plants and herbs: Bayberry, bay laurel, oak, mistletoe, orange, cinnamon, frankincense, poinsettia, pine tree, juniper, myrrh, anise, and red and white carnations.
Oil: Mix orange, cinnamon, and bayberry oils together for anointing, or use frankincense and myrrh.
Food: Gingerbread, plum pudding, sugar cookies, fruit cake, roast goose or duck, turkey, roast beef, mincemeat, root vegetables.
Symbols: Yule log, mistletoe tied with green ribbon, Yule tree decorated with colorful ornaments and lights, gifts wrapped in bright seasonal paper, bowl filled with fresh fruits and nuts, wand tied with red and green ribbon, talismans to represents personal desires and goals.
A Ceremony for Yule
Light the right altar candle and then the left one as you say the following:
Blessed be the fire of faith, which brings forth the light. Left
Blessed be the light of the world, which brings forth life.
Cast the circle and call in the Guardians. Face the altar, anoint the forehead with seasonal oil, and speak the following blessing:
Blessed be the White Goddess, Blessed be the sacrificed King Blessed be the spiritual seed Blessed be the new born Sun.
Say the following blessing and light the bayberry candle:
Lord and lady of the night,
Of mist and of moonlight, Though you are seldom seen
I meet you in heart, mind, and dream. Bless my thoughts, works, and deeds,
That they shall fulfill my wishes and needs. On this night I honor thee
To make my desire a reality, My love I now give to thee
For your blessings, So Mote It Be!
Offer the candle at each of the four quadrants as you speak accordingly:
Blessed be the light coming from the East that brings insight and wisdom.
Blessed be the fire coming from the South that brings strength and power.
Blessed be the moisture coming from the West that brings control and dominion.
Blessed the fertile earth of the North that provides manifestation of desire.
Place the candle back on the altar. Take a few moments to meditate on the meaning of the ritual. Relax. Invoke the God, and then invoke the Goddess. At this point you will want to energize the bayberry candle with your thoughts and desires. Place your hands over the candle, express your desire, and then chant the following:
God of glory, God of light Bless me on this solstice night.
Pause and then bless the wine and bread through the Rite of Union and the Blessing of the Bread ceremony. Begin your closing segment of the rite by offering this blessing:
Within my heart is devoted feeling Vainly should my lips express, I come before your altar kneeling
And pray this time and place you bless.
Dismiss the Guardians and extinguish the altar candles, beginning with the left:
Blessed be the faith that brought forth light. Right
Blessed be the light that brought forth life.
Take up the circle and allow the bayberry candle to burn out.
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