The Winter Solstice (December 21/22) is the longest night and the shortest day. Three days later, the rising sun can be seen to move northwards again from its most southerly rising point in the south-east. This is Christmas, when the Christ child is born from the Virgin Mother and the light returns. This sacred point of new beginnings in the heart of darkness is now often overwhelmed by the commercial festival and cult of the Christmas present, where the gift of the present tense, with all its virginal potential, is manifested and celebrated purely as material gifts. A time of going back home, the return from whence you came, to the origin itself, the reunion with the family that gave you birth, a time of sharing the present while remembering and honouring the past (old year) and preparing for the future (new year). Yule, child, seed or atom wrapped in its swaddling clothes. Capricorn, cardinal earth.