“The first Noel, the Angel did say, was to certain poor shepherds in fields where they lay”
Oh it’s one of my favourite times of year again- Christmas which may come as a bit of a surprise since I’m the least Christ-ly Mass attending person I know… well besides the angry atheists. This afternoon I put up the Christmas tree, something I make a habit of doing every year by myself- even if 99% of the time we spend Christmas away from home.
It’s such a beautiful reminder of the season that we’re in- it’s easy to forget when you live in the tropical paradise of South Africa where the only White Christmas we have is sitting on a beach in Clifton.
Aside from the tree, I’m an absolute fan of Midnight Mass- it was a tradition introduced by my very Catholic mother and while I detest any mass longer than an hour, I have a special place in my heart for Midnight Mass. There’s truly something spiritual about everyone gathered in darkness on 24 December, dressed up with no where to go.
The reason why mass is so long is because an entire hour is dedicated to Carols- the soul of the mass. Oh Silent Night! The First Noel! We Three Kings! beautifully crafted and timeless songs that transports me back to Medieval times where minstrels played for the court- and there was truly an understanding of what such a splendid day meant. A meaning that doesn’t come from the swipe of a visa card.
Yule tide is nigh
It is during times like these where I can see Christianity’s true connection with paganism- and that makes me so happy. To see the root of my family’s religion combining with the understanding of mine. Obviously I understand that Yule is only celebrated during December in the Northern Hemisphere… but I think it’s the one day I can cut the Catholic Calender some slack.
Yule,the winter solstice, gives us the longest night and the shortest day of the year. It marks a time that spring is on it’s way as from this day on, the sun will reign for longer in the sky.
Back in the day, bonfires were lit and spiced cider was toasted with (which sounds absolutely delicious). Holly and Ivy were made into wreathes and hung outside and inside homes in the aim that nature’s spiritual creatures would join in the party.
More importantly, yule tide is a time of introspection and planning for the future- something that as a Gemini, I cannot help but do. I’ve never been one for New Years resolutions but gee can I dream of what’s to come.
On a side note- which is obviously completely relevant- a good friend of mine is set to propose to his dream girl. I’m reminded that I’m a romantic, but more importantly, I love seeing those I care about happy.
So here’s to the start of advent, the week before Christmas and to me realising and recognising what I want from the future. Without the materialism. Without the distractions. Taking it back to basics, taking it back to the root of my beliefs, values and feelings.