Myths & Forgotten Traditions of the Winter Solstice
In this special Yuletide episode, most of the Red Ice crew – Henrik, Lana, John and Melanie (we missed you, Fredrik!) –joins together to discuss the significance of the winter holiday season today and what this important time of year meant to our ancestors. We talk about our childhood memories of Christmas and family teachings, or lack thereof, of pre-Christian traditions surrounding the winter solstice and return of the sun. Henrik describes the ancient Norse pagan ritual, the Blót, which included sacrificial offerings at Uppsala to the gods Odin and Freya, and Lana tells the mythical story of the Wild Hunt, with the flying 8-legged horse, Sleipnir. We get into the legend of Krampus, the shamanic aspects of Santa Claus, the significance of the colors of Yule, the burning of the Yule log, and other symbols central to survival. We receive a history lesson on the origins of Kwanza and Hanukkah, and we look at how Christmas has been culturally appropriated and manufactured into celebrations that hijack the ancient energy of northern European solar traditions. Then, we discuss how Hanukkah has taken center stage at the White House and we listen to a clip from Obama’s big liberal propaganda party that included PC holiday blessings from Susan Talve, a Rabbi from the Central Reform Congregation in St. Louis. Our conversation rounds off with thoughts on the importance of storytelling and practicing rituals, along with rediscovering and honoring the ancient Norse essence of generosity and clan loyalty.