Heliogenna Nine-Day Celebration

created by Hector Lugo

(18-26 December) A modern festival, Heliogenna is nine days of Winter Solstice, with the Solstice as the 5th day (taken from Hector Lugo—creator of the original festival idea) Festival in honor of the sun god Helios at the time of the Winter Solstice. Encompassing nine days, the first three days are called Sunset, the second three days are called Night, and the third three are called Sunrise. The Winter Solstice itself falls within the second day of the second triad of days (day 5).

Eight candles shall be lit, one each sunset, the second day of the second triad (Solstice) will have no candle lighting, and the candles shall burn to their own extinguishing. For safety burning them within proper containers will be most suitable, especially if those containers can be hand decorated with sun motifs.

This is the time to reflect on Helios and His family.  The Sunset is filled with the story of Phaeton and his demise.  Burn yellow/orange candles on these days.  The Night is a time to honor the dead, Hades and Persephone.  Helios is grieving for His son, so is not to be mentioned during these three days.  Burn black candles the first and last day of this triad.  Set out an unlit black candle on the Solstice itself.  The Sunrise is Helios’ return from the depths of Hades and is a joyous time.  Greet Him as He rises each day, sing Hi praises as the days are now going to begin getting longer.  Light yellow/orange candles on these three days.

Note about Christmas: as polytheists, Hellenists can celebrate this holiday with family and friends that celebrate it.  Distribute gifts and feast with the people close to you.  Donate food, money or time to a shelter in honor of Hermes.