How to Celebrate Winter Solstice

There are many traditions and rituals associated with the winter. One of the special days is winter solstice. Find out how to celebrate winter solstice and where you can do so in Budapest!
How to Celebrate Winter Solstice

The continuous rotation of the Earth and with that the change of the seasons all affect us – both our body and our soul. That’s why events like solstices and equinoxes are worth marking on our calendar. As we approach the end of this year, there is only one of them left, the winter solstice, which falls on December 21st. From then on, the days will finally get longer and the nights shorter again – but this is not the only change this phenomenon will bring.

What can we expect from the winter solstice? How can we use this special day in our lives? How do we celebrate it, what rituals and opportunities exist? Here’s an answer to all of this, and even some tips on where to go in Budapest if you want to celebrate December 21st.


What is the Winter Solstice

From a scientific point of view, the winter solstice is the moment when the angle between the line connecting the Sun-Earth centers and the plane of the equator reaches its greatest value at the position of the Sun in the southern hemisphere. It is also the beginning of the astronomical winter in the northern hemisphere. It is from this time that the sun begins to move from south to north, and it is also the shortest day of the year.

In most cultures different customs, rituals and celebrations are associated with this occasion. You might know some of them, such as the Saturnalia from ancient Rome, the Jewish Hanukkah, the African American Kwanzaa or even the East Asian Tungche Festival. And in some countries, the winter solstice is also given a spiritual meaning – let’s dig into it a little bit now!


The Dark Night of the Soul

So what makes the winter solstice spiritual? As we wrote above, this is the longest night and shortest day of the year. There will be complete darkness at the North Pole of Earth at this time – for six full months. So it is no longer so surprising that this occasion has a great impact on humans, in some places it is also referred to as the dark night of the soul.

The long dark hours give every creature of nature, including us, the opportunity to take a little nap, to “sleep in the winter”. By this we mean that this period is perfect for turning inward, so that we can then welcome spring with renewed strength, recharged and with a clean head.

So the winter solstice is perfect for you to pay attention to yourself, your needs, meditate a little and focus on what’s important to you! 


Ceremonies to Celebrate Winter Solstice

Now you too can see why it’s important to step back a little during this already stressful time and look inward. By this, just as light, you can be born again. Celebrate the birth of something new, the end of the year, the release of bad things and the reception of the energies of the new year!

In this case, as we have already written above, it is worth meditating: in silence, in peace, turning inwards. Light a candle in honor of the light. Think about why you are grateful for the past year and offer gratitude for it. You can think about the challenges and difficulties and what they taught you. Then take a look at what you want to take with you to 2022 and what you would like to focus on in the new year. It is also a great idea to write all these thoughts down in your journal.


how to celebrate winter solstice


Winter Solstice in Budapest

Today, various events are held not only in the most spiritual communities to mark the winter solstice. Thus, there are events in Hungary and in Hungary that can be joined by those who are moved by this event. We’ll show you where to go if you’re one of them!

As we wrote in the weekly program guide, there will be a joint meditation on this special evening, for example, but many other events await. For those who would celebrate the safety of their home, they can attend an online meditation event. 

Etele is also waiting for an indoor but not online event, where they will be preparing for a classic winter solstice ceremony . Meanwhile, in Szentendre, you can take part in a sound bath at Forma Studio.

If one were to celebrate outdoors, there are countless opportunities as well. In the hills of the Pilisi Park you can take part in a festive forest bath , which is closed by a mystical fire ceremony. Meanwhile, a community dance is celebrated in Normafa, and a more classic ritual awaits on the Óbuda Shipyard Island .

And while those events are generally held in Hungarian, it might still be worth checking them out, since things like meditation, dance and sound baths don’t necessarily need a language.


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