“Xi Hou’s themes are kinship, longevity, unity, divination and weather. Her symbols are sunlight and gold dragons. As the Chinese mother of the sun, this Goddess joins our festivities today to celebrate Her child’s rebirth. Each morning, Xi Hou diligently bathes one of ten suns in the lake of creation so it can shine in purity, and then She puts it on top of the trees, where it’s received by a dragon chariot that moves the sun across the sky.
Consider following Chinese custom, and rejoice in the solstice by gathering in the kitchen with your housemates and leaving offerings of chopsticks, oranges, incense, and candles for unity and long life for all those gathered. Open a curtain to let the sun light flood in, than thank Xi Hou for Her child and its warmth. Also, at some point during the day, enjoy some Oriental-style dumplings (dim sum) for kinship.
Among the favorite activities today are weather prophecies. Go outside and see what direction the wind is coming from. An east wind portends trouble, west winds indicate the ripening of an effort or a good grain crop, south winds counsel watching your money, as the harvest will be poor (don’t invest in crop shares!), and north winds foretell bounty.
Red clouds reveal that your personal energy will wane and droughts may follow, black clouds predict floods, yellow clouds precede prosperity and abundant crops, and white clouds reveal arguments or war.”
(Patricia Telesco, “365 Goddess: a daily guide to the magic and inspiration of the goddess”.)
The Goddess Xi Hou (pronounced SHE-hoe) is the “mother of the ten suns; this ancient Chinese heroine created the calendar by selecting the order in which She would bathe Her children – thus establishing which day came before which. After bathing the child in the sweet waters of the Kan Yuan Gulf, She hung the day’s sun in a mulberry tree and raised it into the sky” (Monaghan, p. 156).
Also seen as Xi He and Hsi-Ho (see my February 7th entry Goddess Hsi-Ho).
Monaghan, Patricia. The New Book of Goddesses and Heroines, “Hsi-Ho”.
Cnculture.org, “Ho Yi Shoots down the Suns“.
Wikipedia, “Dōngzhì Festival“.