A recent Sunday gathering was a reflection on the Winter Solstice which occurred on 22nd June at 2.57am NZST.
Winter Solstice is one of the most powerful points of the year as the axis of the Earth pauses, shifts and moves in the opposite direction. It also marks the date when the Earth’s axis is furthest away from the sun – the longest night of the year. After the solstice, days gradually get more hours of sunlight (as I write this today, it is hard to believe with fog/mist hanging around until almost 2pm)! It also marks the first day of winter in the astronomical calendar, whilst in the meteorological calendar, we are already three weeks into winter.
Winter solstice is the great stillness before the Sun’s strength builds, and days grow longer. It can be an ideal time to rest and reflect, while you sit cosily by the fire or the heat pump. It’s a time when we have the time, to honour our past and clear space literally and figuratively, to make room for what we ‘wish’ for the coming year.
Winter solstice and Christmas share similar messages of new hope, gratitude, and thankfulness for all that has been achieved and received throughout the past year.