Winter Solstice

Image by Noah Jurik from Pixabay

One thing I love about December is that, at the darkest time of the year, the Holidays give us something to celebrate. When we light the Christmas tree or the Hanukkah candles, we are recapitulating thousands of years of human history. The winter solstice tells us that we are over the worst of the darkness, if not the worst of the winter. Ancient peoples made great efforts to get the date of the solstice exactly right, because they were naturally afraid that the sun might never come back. Stonehenge is just one example.

Katie Toth


The Winter Solstice, the longest night of the year, begins on the night of Monday December 21. It’s often surrounded by Christmas and other religious holidays. On the New Haven Green, a group of humanists — people who believe in using life experience and science, instead of religion, to guide their ethics — had a non-religious celebration of their own.

The Yale Humanists, the non-profit who organized the event, say they came out to the Green on Sunday to help people who don’t believe in God form their own communities where they can be themselves.