December 22, 2011

"Dies Natalis Solis Invicti".

December in Scandinavia is defined by an endless and constant darkness. We only get six hours of daylight, which is fragile and resembles twilight at the very best, instigating perpetual tiredness and signs of depression.
Yet, this period of - what feels as - eternal dusk, beckons us to light multitude of candles through out our homes, adding to the enchantment of the Holidays, complementing the artificial illumination of the streets and the stores.

Today, as we cross the threshold of light once again, the longest night settles upon us, creating a sweet contradiction.

While the winter solstice ushers us into the fourth season, defined by cold and darkness, it also brings with it that slight glimpse of hope. The Romans called this day Dies Natalis Solis Invicti, meaning the Birthday of the Unconquered Sun.
From now on, the fragile daylight will grow stronger by each day. However minute that addition of light will be to begin with, it will be there nevertheless. Slowly gaining in intensity until it grows strong enough to illuminate our surroundings, comes the vernal equinox.

However, until that time comes, we will relish in the subtle light of candles, which create that enchanting atmosphere, so significant of the winter season.

23 comments :

Elisabeth said...

So different from our life here in Australia, Zuzana, where at this time of the year the sun stays up until around 9 pm and then promptly drops from the sky into warm darkness.

Yours is such a beautiful description, Zuzana. For you the candles; for us, mosquito coils.

A Lady's Life said...

Zuzana you are probably enough to light up the whole house with your warmth and beautiful soul.:)

ladyfi said...

Hurray for the coming of the light!

Beautiful shots of your candles.

Kath said...

How lovely that we learn so much from our blogging friends. Gud Yul to you and your family, much love from England x

Elizabeth said...

Let the light shine upon us all for it is cold, wet and dark here on my danish peninsula.

Luckily your sunshine is always around. Have a great christmas with all your beloved family and I'll see you soon.

latebloomerbuds said...

Although we have less daylight in winter here, 6 hours would be tuff to get used to for sure. Loving your warm, cozy candle photos and as always, your words. Margie

Brian Miller said...

i love all the candles...it creates such a soft and romantic atmosphere...remember all your posts on the long darkness and think of that often this time of year...i hope you have a very merry christmas zu...i know you will with your new family

Blog Princess G said...

I'd never heard of this phrase, but I love it... what a glorious thought: the unconquered sun. :) And I love how your candles are melting in such a gorgeous pattern.

Lord Thomas of Wellington said...

Zuzana,
Do you have a good view of the constellations? That would be breathe taking. I love to go out where we live now, away from city lights and look up into the heavens.
Merry Christmas to you and yours! :)

LadyCat said...

Your candles are all so beautiful. I love candlelight. The first thing I do when I get home is light a candle. It is so cozy and I always pick warm fragrances. My latest favorite is baked french toast.
I'm glad we are on the uphill climb to longer days now.
Have a blessed Christmas!

Rahul Bhatia said...

Zuzana, I admire your writing and pictures and they merge together like a flow of a beautiful river!

Darla said...

...love the "eternal dusk" and your sharing of an experience I haven't had...although I would someday enjoy passing through the cycles of a Scandinavian year to feel the contrast to what I have always known...another adventure!

Darla said...

And LOVE all your candle photos!!!!

sprinkles said...

I love those candles in the top pic, then realized they're candles in a candleholder. Still pretty!

steviewren said...

I thought of you on the 21st. Getting the longest day behind us makes me happy too, even though we don't have as much darkness as you do there I am still happy to think that each day it will be a little lighter as I drive home from work.

Jill from Killeny Glen said...

I always enjoy your posts about the light Zuzana. The photos are so beautiful and WARM. Best wishes for a wonderful Christmas in your new home with your wonderful family!
XOXO

Alberto Hugo Rojas said...

Merry Christmas
and Happy New Year Zuzana
always makes me happy to come to your blog
full of good pictures
and things to learn in your
letters. Thanks for coming
always by my blog
and your nice words
kisses.

Zuzu said...

Love all the candlelight - and I'm sure beautiful light comes from those around you.
Wishing you a very joyful holiday season, my friend!!!
Hugs,
Zuzu

Betsy said...

Merry Christmas, Zuzana! I hope your holiday weekend is full of peace, wonder and happiness! xo

Sandy Carlson said...

You are a beautiful light, my friend.

Radka said...

Ahoj Zuzko, přeji ti krásné Vánoce a krásný Nový rok, u nás byly Vánoce krásné, Matýsek měl velkou radost z dárků, ahoj Radka a Matýsek :)).

Michael Manning said...

Each year, this time of year on your site gives me great pause to wonder as your insights make us feel as if we are there with you experiencing something new! xoxo! :)

Michael Manning said...

Happy New Year, Zuzana!

Happiness,
Michael :)