Diamond-Cut Life

More Joy, Less Stuff

Diamond-Cut Life random header image

Happy Birthday to the Unconquered Sun

December 21st, 2008 by Alison · 2 Comments · sustainability

Today is winter solstice, the shortest day of the year. In the days before fossil fuels routinely lit our nights, winter solstice was celebrated as the Birthday of the Unconquered Sun.

winter solsticeImagine how vulnerable our long-ago human ancestors were as the days grew colder, darker and shorter. They struggled to protect themselves from the bitter elements; they carefully rationed the food they had saved from summer and autumn. Surviving the winter was by no means a given. Winter meant death for many.

And so for the life-giving sun to return, for the days to start growing longer again was a time of great celebration. Winter solstice meant rebirth. It was a holy day (the origin of the word holiday).  For our ancestors, winter solstice was a turning-point of hope as great as . . . . . well, as great as the birth of a savior for humanity. As great as the later birth of Christ.

Over many years, the pagan Birthday of the Unconquered Sun became the Birthday of the Unconquered Son. Our modern Christmas is a direct descendant of the pagan winter solstice. In both holy days, we are celebrating hope in the darkness, and our connection with a life-giving force much greater than ourselves.

Happy birthday to our beloved Sun and Son.

Related Posts:


Tags: ·········

2 Comments so far ↓

Leave a Comment