Yule Rituals for Asatru, Norse Paganism and Heathenry
Here you will find rituals from the Heathen community for the Yule season. There are a lot of different ways to celebrate Yule, but these are just some of the rituals people do. You'll find other resources for songs we sing, prayers we say, traditional Heathen Yuletide Dishes and Drinks and so on.
This is just a page to help collect some of the rituals others have done so that you can have your own!
One note on timing. Some people start to celebrate Yule on "Mother Night" or "Mother's Night" which is the Winter Solstice and then for various amounts of time afterwards (3 days or 12 days, depending on how much partying you want to be doing). This is likely more a modern practice and it lines up nicely both with the Wiccan Wheel of the Year and with other religious celebrations going on at the time (Christmas and all that).
Other Heathens celebrate Yule at "Midwinter" which is the first Full Moon of the New Year, which follows a different reckoning of the holy-tides from source material.
We discuss this difference in our Calendar resources, but it's just important to note it for now because a lot of these rituals are for a Mother's Night oriented Yule.
Mother's Night Blot By Winifred Hodge Rose
(originally posted on the Heathen Soul Lore Blog and generously approved for reposting by the author)
Context and Introduction - From the Editor
This is an example liturgy from Winifred Hodge Rose. This version has been edited and clipped and more sections to give a bit more context for this liturgy is here for clarity to help you put this into your practice if that’s what you want to do.
Notes on this Yule Ritual you might want to consider
- You’ll notice the form of this Blot is a version of the very common “Blot-Symbel” ritual form where a ritual vessel is passed from person to person, they raise the vessel and then take a drink, and then pass it according to their tradition.
- While this is the most commonly practiced form of “Blot,” it is not the only one. This is what we call in our Ritual section the "Classic Blot."
- There are several “speakers” called for here. This doesn’t mean that you have to have a ton of people or else this doesn’t “work.” You can repurpose this to be any number of speakers or just say it all yourself.
- Winifred opens here with some prose to explain the purpose of the liturgy and the “reason for the season” which you will also see some Priests do just to get people on the same page for the coming ritual
Yule Blot (Mother’s-Night) Ritual
Yuletide begins on this night: a time of wildness and stillness, of holiness and merriment, of strangeness and familiarity. Wild Goddesses and Gods ride the night winds and sweep over roads and fields, gathering spirits lost and left behind in Midgard.
Valkyries course the skies, sprinkling the land with froth from their horses’ bits. Mother Holle shakes her feather-bed in the winter sky, and snow falls like feathers on the Earth. All bring fertility and change, challenge our fears and call up our courage.
They remind us of the wild, untamed spaces of the Worlds, remind us that not all things are tamed or tamable by the hands of humankind. Let us listen to the mysteries they call out on the winter winds.
Opening Prayer - Invocation
(A moment of silence and centering, then call out)
Disir! Matrons! Mothers!
Asynjur and Vana-wives, loving and wise!
Seeresses, Wise women!
Deep within the Wells of Time and Wyrd,
Deep within the Womb of Worlds,
Your mysteries lie like growing babes,
Nourished in darkness and silence,
Growing toward the light.
(Light candles on the altar while saying:)
Dark Well of Space where Fate is laid,
Of Ice and Fire the Worlds are made;
From Fire and Ice the Worlds are spun,
From Mother-Night is born the Sun.
Sun’s rays shine forth from longest night,
The World-Tree turns from dark to bright:
Hail and welcome Yule!
All: Hail and welcome Yule!
Earth-Mother: / Your might and main / Are spent for our gain / From orchard and garth / From field and hearth / The signs of your grace.
Of you we are born / To you we return / In blood and bone / In tree and stone / You leave your trace.
Ground of the World / Your beauty unfurled / In meadow and glade / In sunlight and shade / We see your face.
Mother of All / Give heed to our call / For always we turn / Toward your fullness we yearn / Our holiest place.
All: Hail the Earth-Mother!
(All drink, if desired, and an offering is poured into the blessing bowl on the altar.)
Hailing the Mothers
Ancient matron lines unbroken,
Stretching out through time and tides of humankind,
Mothers of families and tribes,
Mothers of our spirit, mothers of our blood,
As you have nourished us throughout the years,
We give you honor and remembrance now
On this Night of the Mothers.
Norns visiting newborns,
Holda leading the Wild Host,
Valkyrja collecting our ghosts,
Holle offering haven:
From before life’s beginning to after life’s end,
Life lies in your arms,
Mothers all-giving, loving and wise.
All: Hail the Mothers!
(All raise horns and drink, if desired, and pour an offering into the blessing bowl.)
(Here you can include a song if you wish.)
(Proceed with Sumbel as you customarily do it, passing the horn and speaking your calls and boasts. When you are done, pour the remaining drink into the blessing bowl.)
Sharing the Blessing of the Blot
Here we have spoken from our hearts, sharing what is meaningful to us with one another, the ancestors, landwights, and the Holy Ones. We have laid our thoughts and memories in Mimir’s Well of Memory and Inspiration, and ask the Holy Ones, the Ancestors, and the Spirits of the Land to bless the work of our hearts and minds placed within this Blessing Bowl.
(Sprinkle participants with an evergreen twig dipped in the blessing bowl. The altar, home, land, and any pets in attendance can also be sprinkled and blessed.)
Wildness may roam outdoors, but inside we have warmth and winsomeness, companionship and the blessings of home and kin.
Our Holy Ones both great and small have come to share the merriment of Yuletide with us.
Gods and Goddesses, ancestors, wights and spirits of land and home, all well-intentioned beings have been warmly welcomed here within these walls.
May our Yuletide be gladdened by their presence, and our lives renewed by their blessings!
Hail and thanks to the Mothers and the Holy Ones! Hail and thanks to Earth, Mother of All, for all you do, and all you are, and all you mean to us your children, blessed by your grace.
As the Wild Hunt flies and the wandering souls are gathered in,
As the Mothers spin, as we weave and re-weave tales of Time and Worlds from their sacred threads,
As the Holy Ones, the Ancestors, and Spirits of the Land are honored,
As trees grow tall, as birds, fish, and animals roam,
As we live our everyday lives, mindful of the blessings around us,
Worlds are stitched together, the holy Kindreds of Beings are united, energies blend and flow, and our World is once again made whole.
Our Blot is now blessed and ended, as we go forth with frith and faith renewed.
Piper Perry's Yule Ritual of Light
Piper donated this Yule Ritual of Light for the enjoyment and education of all Heathens. Thank you, Piper, for your contribution!
- Outfits T-Tunics and Poof Pants Black and White
- Runes Carved
- Pamphlet: ritual emphasis, deity introduction, chant, rune interpretations, flash paper warning,
- sample toasts
- Four stations assembled and set up
- Dixie cups set up in room with? Apple juice, pomegranate juice, some sort of dark juice (I know
- it’s not Norse, but it’s got that darkness connection)
- Cleansing the Space/Protecting the Space
- Putting out the pamphlets in the green room for Participants to read before the ritual (if we do
- this, I think we can eliminate the explanation portion of the introduction
Fire is carried around the space to be made sacred(candle)
Fire I bear around this sacred site and bid all men make peace. Flame I bear to enclose and bid
evil spirits to flee. Thor make sacred, Thor make sacred, Thor make sacred this holy site. Fire I
bear around this sacred site and bid all men make peace. Flame I bear to enclose and bid outlaws
fare away. Thor make sacred, Thor make sacred, Thor make sacred this holy site. Thor make
sacred, Thor make sacred, Thor make sacred this holy site.
From life, death comes
From light, darkness comes
From darkness, light comes
From death, life comes
After the first repetition of the Chant, those who wish to sing come in to sing The Holy and the Ivy.
Yule Prayer and Blessing
Welcome, friends and kin to our Yuletide celebration.
Tonight, we welcome back the Sun and sweep away the old year’s darkness, doubts, fears and needs. As in ancient times, tonight we note the darkness that has come to our lands.
The shadows deepen, the cold intensifies and our spirits wane, wondering if this may truly be the winter the sun does not return. The snow swirls at our feet. The cold stings our faces. Our thoughts grow sluggish, and our bodies are weighed down with the needs and fears of the harsh year before.
Yule Ritual of Light
But here on this evening of Yule, we see the spark of new beginning. (light a candle)
The longest night and the shortest day pass us by.
The hours of daylight begin to lengthen, marking a time for us to think of new possibilities.
The spark of creation (the rest of us light our candles) lights the night and it sears away the pain and uncertainty of the old year.
Now comes the time to begin anew.
This spark is a small light,
but it burns so brightly in the darkness.
This spark is a small light,
but it brings with it the promise of growth.
The hope and renewal it brings with it will sustain!
(Each person brings their candle to the center. The person closest to the fire station lights the Sterno, then brings their candle to the center)
Each of us brings the spark of life and energy to this place, so that it may illuminate the darkness.
Our destinies are dependent upon our actions at this moment and moments like this for the rest of our lives.
Allow this spark of light to fill you, allow your personal sun to fuel the changes for the next year.
Each of the stations around you represents an action, to write what you wish to be rid of (point to), to let it go in the fire (point to), to wash it from you (point to), to take a rune as a glimpse into your new year and the implements to make it yours (point to).
Group goes to stations, one at writing station, two at fire station, two at water station, one at rune station.
While audience is in motion:
As you complete your intention, meditate on how that intention will come to action. What will you give to make what you want?
Wait for everyone to finish at all stations
In the deep of winter, we have seen the spark of the sun returning to us.
Around us, the days grow brighter.
The sun glitters on the snow, throwing light in every direction.
It is radiant, it is glowing, it is warm.
Feel the warmth on your skin, the sunlight dancing on your face.
Spring WILL come back.
The spark of life begins anew.
Our intentions begin their cycle.
(bring lights up to ¾ brightness)
Let us celebrate and thank the Gods for the return of the light
Yuletide Toast to the Return of the Light
(as setting up for toast, have people not toasting distribute Dixie cups w/juice. Wait for toasting to begin until everyone is situated)
Toast to the light and the potential of the new year. Position group members so that if participants don’t choose to toast, we are still going around in the circle.
We greet the New Year with delight and anticipation. Go from this evening to bring action to your intentions.
Go from this evening in peace!
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