Twelve Days of Christmas – Raunächte (a german wording)
The “Raunächte” originated from the transition of the lunar year with 354 days to the solar year, which has 365 days. As a result, 11 days, or 12 nights, were “left over”. They are referred to as Rau”nächte” because, according to the annual cycle, we are in the darker half of the year, i.e., the “night of the year”. Therefore, it’s not just the darkness that’s referred to, but the entire 24 hours of the day. In the past, days that were darker longer than they were light were also called “nights”.
The Raunächte used to be called the “Smoke Nights”. During this time, people would smudge with herbs to ward off dark spirits and demons, and to welcome new and blessed things in the new year. The 12 nights after Christmas represent a supernatural time, inviting reflection and manifestation.
For some people, the Raunächte begin with the longest night of the year, the winter solstice, also known as Yule on December 21st. During this period, one should, if possible, not work, but celebrate, perceive, and enjoy time with loved ones. Even if most traditions have been forgotten, we can use this time to slow down and reconnect with nature.
Various Rituals and Impulses for the 12 Days of Christmas – Raunächte
There are many ideas and rituals for what one can do during these days. Each Raunacht, representing a month of the year, can also be assigned a specific theme. Taking half an hour or an hour each day for meditation, reflection, and introspection is a wonderful way of introspection. Being creative, painting or writing, is also included.
Write down what you dreamt every day, what you thought during the day, which impulses you received, and whatever else happened. All these things might contain messages about what could happen in the respective month associated with the Raunacht.
Those who have oracle cards can draw them and perceive the impulses. Or draw a Tarot card for every month of the year, one for the entire year, and …
There are various possibilities and rituals for the Raunächte, not just one. The 13 wishes are also part of this. At the beginning of the Raunächte, one should write 13 wishes on small pieces of paper, fold them, and store them. On December 24th, you then draw one of these papers each day and burn it unopened in a fire bowl. A higher power will take care of fulfilling this wish. The 13th wish, the one remaining at the end of the Raunächte, is the one you must work towards fulfilling yourself.