As an alternative to Christmas cards, I would like to share with you this article on Astronomy merging with the Biblical Christmas story:
Celebrating Winter Solstice – The Sun is on the Southern Cross
For thousands of years, carvings on temples, cave walls, monuments and artefacts have honoured the sun: bringer of warmth, security, life and light. As the days grow shorter in the period leading up to the winter solstice, December 21st, the sun appears to stop moving south or north and stays still for three days (in the northern hemisphere) – the 22nd, 23rd and 24th of December. This is the meaning of the word ‘sol-stice’ – sun standing still. To our ancestors this period symbolized the death of the sun god (son of god) and when three days later on the 25th of December the sun started moving again, the sun was reborn – hence the birth of Jesus at this time – the sun god or son of god, the saviour of mankind. It is no coincidence that our principal day of worship is called Sun Day.
The Bible tells us that three wise men came from the east, following a star that led them to Bethlehem to celebrate the birth of Jesus the Messiah. Sirius is the star in the east, the brightest star in the sky, which on December 24th aligns with the three brightest stars in the constellation of Orion (Orion’s belt). The stars were referred to by many ancient cultures as the Three Kings.
During this three day period, the sun resides in the vicinity of the Southern Cross constellation and appears to ‘hang’ on the cross, hence the story of the crucifixion. However the resurrection of the sun or son is celebrated three months later at the spring equinox when the nights are equal to the daylight (Easter) and when once again the forces of light ‘defeat’ the forces of darkness, and the days grow longer than the nights. (Author: Stella Woods)
“May the long time sun shine upon you, all love surround you and the pure light within you guide your way on.”