Tomorrow — December 21 — is the Winter Solstice, Great Yule — a major natural holiday from ancient times сelebrating the winter rebirth of the sun. It is the day when the sun stops lowering its daily arc across the sky, followed by its gradual rising again through spring and summer. From tomorrow on, the nights grow shorter and the days longer. It is the time when we celebrate the beginning of the return of light and warmth, the rising of the yang (active, warm, bright) energies. More ancient than Christmas, it is a celebration of Nature and our place in the universe, and an important part of the hokku/daoku year.
There are many ways to observe the Winter Solstice, from the simple to elaborate feasting and colorful rituals. However you please, I hope you will all take some time to rejoice in this significant midwinter festival.
Here is an old verse by Seibi:
The sun rises over the pines;
The Winter Solstice.