Yule is a pagan holiday aka “sabbat” that marks the Winter Solstice – the shortest day, and the longest night of the year.
Symbolically, the Sun dies at Yule, and is reborn on December 25th. This is parallel to Christianity’s story of Jesus Christ, who died and then was reborn. As I’d mentioned in a previous article, in astrotheology, the “Son” is equivalent to the “Sun”.
The Winter Solstice is when the darkness is considered to be at its peak before the Sun makes its ascension, promising to bring warmth and light as we continue through the seasons.
This period before the return of the light is a time for us to reflect and rest. We can symbolically sit with the crone goddess Hecate- and see what gifts she may bring us. Hecate is a witch goddess of darkness, magic and the moon, who is thought by some to be a scary figure; a bringer of fear. But it is our own fears and darkness she helps us to face, so that we may be free from them and release them. In Greek mythology, it was Hecate who guided Demeter in the underworld to find her daughter Persephone. And she became Persephone’s confidante and companion in the underworld, as well. These stories show she can also be our confidant and guide in the dark.
A Tarot Spread For Yule To Bring In A Better 2016
Here is a Tarot spread that I’ve created for Yule. I created a short one because I will be using it at an event here in London and I wanted it to be brief- but effective. This is a great reading to do just before the new year, to release the old and bring in the new. It is also good to see what we could gain from a period of reflection this winter season.
Find a quiet place where you can perform this spread. Once you have your cards, simply pull one card from the deck for each of the questions below, creating a 4-card spread.
- What needs to die?
- What needs to be born, or reborn?
- What can you find, sitting in the dark with Hecate?
- What can she help you to release?
Give this a try and tell me what insights you receive! I’d love to hear about them.
Much Love and Happy Yuletide!
Image by Emily Balivet.