The Winter Solstice- December 21st


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Winter Solstice

The Sun Reborn




The Winter Solstice- on the 21st December in the Northern Hemisphere -is that wonderful time on the Wheel of the Year when The Sun returns to the world. From out of the darkest day of Winter comes the rebirth of the light.

Ancient cultures have always marked the Winter Solstice with rituals and celebrations. On this shortest day of the year our ancestors would gather to light fires and perform rituals to honour The Sun and welcome it’s return to us.
Many of us continue to do so, and at the most famous spiritual sites here on Earth, gatherings will still be held to mark the Winter Solstice.


The 5000 year old Burial Chamber at Newgrange, County Meath, Ireland. The chamber was built so that on the Winter Solstice a beam of light penetrates the roof-box and travels up the 19 metre passage and into the chamber. As the sun rises higher, the beam widens so that the whole chamber is dramatically illuminated.



stonehenge-collage  Greeting the Winter Solstice Sun at Stonehenge, Wiltshire, England.


This time of year has always been celebrated



The Romans held the week long festival of Saturnalia around the time of the Winter Solstice. This was held to honour the god Saturn and involved extensive, lavish feasts and gift-giving. Ancient Egyptians honoured the rebirth of Ra, the god of the sun.

The Yule celebrations of Northern Europe also arose from the ancient tale of the eternal battle between the Oak King, who symbolises the warmth and light of the Summer months and the Holly King, who represents the cold darkness of Winter.

Here in The British Isles, celebration of the solstice included Druidic traditions, like the gathering of mistletoe- the symbol of fertility and the seed of life. The ancient Druids believed mistletoe to be an indicator of great sacredness. On The Winter Solstice, the Chief Druid would cut the mistletoe from the sacred oak, using a golden sickle. A cloth would be held below the tree to catch the sprigs of mistletoe as they fell- as it was believed that it would have profaned the mistletoe to fall upon the ground.

Having no roots, and no connection to the earth, it was considered the sacred plant of the sun. A tree that hosted a mistletoe plant was a tree marked as particularly sacred

The mistletoe was divided and distributed to the people, who then hung them over doorways as protection. With its golden colour, and growing high off the ground without roots, it was naturally associated with the sun.

It was considered to be the semen of the solar deity and carried with it the promise of the rebirth of the Sun God
So mistletoe was considered a fertility symbol – hence the ‘kissing under the mistletoe’ tradition that is carried on right into the present and no doubt will continue far beyond….


Christmas And The Winter Solstice

The birth of Jesus Christ is celebrated on Dec. 25 or Christmas Day all around the world. One theory is that this date was chosen after early Christian scholars debated when it should best be marked to gain widespread attention

Some theories suggest that Christians co opted existing and already powerful times of the year to mark it for their own religious needs.  The Romans were already celebrating the festival of Saturnalia on The Solstice and in Northern Europe, Pagans marked the Winter Solstice itself.  Yule the ancient name for Christmas, comes from the Scandinavian word Jol


Today’s ‘Santa Claus’ is a folk figure with multicultural roots.

He embodies characteristics of Saturn- as I mentioned earlier in connection with the Roman celebration of Saturnalia. He has elements of Cronos – the Greek god, also known as Father Time.


We also see echoes of

  • The Holly King ( the Celtic god of the dying year),
  • Grandfather Frost ( a Russian winter god),
  • Thor (The Norse sky god who rides the sky in a chariot drawn by goats)
  • Odin/Wotan (The Scandinavian ‘All-Father’ who rides the sky on Sleipnir , his eight-legged horse)
  • The Tomte (a Norse Land Spirit known for giving gifts to children at this time of year)  
  • ‘Santa’s reindeer’ can also be viewed as forms of Herne or Cernnunos, The Celtic Horned God



So for us in the 21st century, many of these ancient traditions appear and persist- whether we are aware of this or not:


Evergreen plants are brought into the home in the form of trees, holly and mistletoe, to remind us that life grows and continues.

Even a store bought yule-log-collagechocolate Yule Log is the modern- and edible- version of the dressed Oak or Birch log. These logs would carried or dragged into the home, with much celebration and then placed on the great fires of our forebears. As the old year burned away -symbolised by the Yule Log- a piece of it was kept to place on the fire of the following year.

The  Celtic Horned God Cernunnos manifests in images of reindeer. In the festive colours of red, green and gold that are all around us, we can see the elements of earth and fire- and of course – The Sun itself.  We give gifts to one another and hold great feasts while a Father Figure continues to bestow bounty on us from above as he rides high up in the sky…….



Marking The Winter Solstice


candlesWe can all physically mark the Winter Solstice, in our own way- even if we aren’t able to visit sacred sites or follow all the traditions of our ancestors.
Watch the sun rise and light beautiful yellow or white candles in your home to mark it’s the return. Bake your own specially decorated Yule Log and share it with loved ones, along with cinnamon spiced wine or cider.
Winter Solstice celebrations don’t need to be complex. It’s truly a time to celebrate and enjoy the awakening of the world again… remembering that all is birthed anew. Light comes back in the midst of darkness and as we celebrate life we also set our intentions and wishes for the coming year. It’s the perfect time to write out a list of all the things you would most like to manifest in your life.


A Winter Solstice Ritual

This involves your wishes, your desires or your goals for the year ahead. Take some time over this and carefully consider all your reasons for them
Once you’ve finally decided, then write them one by one on very small pieces of paper ( any colour will be fine, but yellow or white is good)
The next part of the ritual will require:
Spring bulbs- preferably snowdrop or crocus bulb
Earth to plant them in – a garden or even just a pot.As you plant your bulbs in the earth, add the very small pieces of paper into the soil, one piece at a time.


snowdropsVisualise your desires as you do so and imagine the warmth of the sun on the flowers as they emerge through the earth and into the light- along with the joy that you feel as your wishes manifest with them!
Wishing you love, as we all celebrate the return of the light.

Happy Winter Solstice from Martine Alexis Clairvoyance!





Tarot Of The Day Friday December 9th


Your Free Daily Tarot for December 9th by Martine Alexis- Clairvoyant


the-empressThe Empress

Today, you’re able to wield control of your world- but with lots of compassion! Professionally, you may have – or will be offered- leadership in a group situation, where you have the chance to combine professional expertise and power with a very nurturing approach. People around you today will need your management and direction but also your comfort and inspiration. Take pleasure in this. You can truly help others to manifest change and abundance in their lives- as well as in your own. In fact, you should hear news about how hard work is paying off in a very literal financial sense- money is on it’s way to you. It’s always a more intelligent strategy to respect and conserve any spare cash – but today you can enjoy spending some of it with a clear conscience. Your eyes may be  especially drawn by luxurious and gorgeous items !

Love is also abundant today. For the single, you’ll shine in social situations and these should provide the perfect backdrop for you to meet a tantalizing romantic prospect. You’re more likely to share a connection with a totally new person- today is about embracing the present and not regretting the past. The single need to move on to lusher pastures. In the age in which we live, of course, many social situations can now be virtual rather than real life……

Those in relationships should really adore today’s atmosphere of commitment and closeness. You’ll be delighted by the love and loyalty shown to you by your loved ones.




Tarot Of The Day Thursday December 8th



Thursday December 7th.

Your Free Daily Tarot by  Martine Alexis- Clairvoyant



akingofcupsThe King of Cups

Love and admiration take centre stage. You may be more ‘visible ‘ than usual today and can expect others to seek you out and show you lots of appreciation and respect. Professionally, this may manifest as  verbal or written praise or by the offer of better financial rewards for what you do. Whichever way your abilities are being recognised,  today’s energy gives you the opportunity to take a more elevated path- and to realise that you can fulfill even your biggest career ambitions!

Emotionally, it’s wonderful to be wanted but it’s also important to understand ‘self love’. This isn’t about vanity or narcissism, but making sure that we take care of ourselves before we give our all to others. Therefore, you may need to set some stronger emotional boundaries with some people today.  You can still be kind and loving but do try to balance generosity with some tactical – and tactful – unavailability!  Romantically, the single should consider expanding your horizons. Traveling to new locations – or even planning this-may also bring you closer to finding love. For those already in romantic relationships, today has a more fun filled and lighter energy. Serious relationships don’t always have to be serious!  Later on in the day, partners may delight you with actions that show just how much they put you first – and reassure you of their love and affection.

Tarot Of The Day Wednesday December 7th



Wednesday December 7th. Your Free Tarot Of The Day by Martine Alexis


The Queen of Swordsaqueenofswords

Waiting patiently and keeping your hopes up may have their place- but not today! News may arrive that clarifies matters around you to a great degree and helps you to move forward with plans. In fact, Wednesday seems to bring with it a bustling energy of activity and accomplishment -with you at it’s centre. In the world of work and professions, you may have been eager to put your talents to better use or feel ready for a new intellectual challenge. Good news, then! Today favours opportunities and offers. The only consideration here is that you may have to act pretty swiftly to accept them or take them up. If you’re already prepared-  that’s perfect. If not- then do trust your instinct. It’s likely to be sharper than usual today….

In emotional relationships, a spirit of truth may influence all your words and actions. You may be very tempted to ‘tell it as is ‘ and not  to tolerate any form of irrational or demanding behaviour from others. It’s good to respect your integrity – but choose your words carefully when dealing with them.  For those in romantic relationships, some honest -but kind- communication will actually bring you closer together. For the single, love may appear very rapidly and unexpectedly! Give The Universe some help with this by making sure that you’re very  visible today.





Tarot Of The Day Tuesday December 6th



 Your Daily Tarot For Tuesday December 6th by Martine Alexis



lovers1The Lovers

“All the world loves a lover…”

Make time today to be with your closest  ones far away from ‘the madding crowd’. You may need some special time where you can just be with your most loved people – or person.It’s actually a day that really favours romance in all its forms. Today is about embracing love- literally and metaphorically!  Are you having any  disagreements that still linger in the air? Then today is the perfect day to talk them out and see how small they really are in the face of your true connection with one another.Loved ones are ready to see your point of view. For the already coupled up this is a really  harmonious start to the day – and the month of December as a whole. For the single- expect to encounter someone who shares how you feel about life, the universe- and all in between…….

In other aspects of your life, you may feel a strong desire to make happier balance between your outward life and your emotional life! Are your career demands a barrier to you having meaningful emotional connections outside of it?  Today, you should be able to take back more control and really address these imbalances.Stake a claim over where you  want to put  your time and energy!  It’s not impossible- you can find that elusive balance. As the day ends you should be on the road to being valued in your professional life and the adored in your love life!