Here’s why this year’s winter solstice is unique

Pat Wise
December 22, 2018

The moon, called the Cold Moon, arrives December 22nd, and it's the first time in eight years a full moon has coincided with the winter solstice. "As the Earth moves around the sun, each hemisphere experiences winter when it's tilted away from the sun and summer when it's tilted toward the sun", according to CNN.

In India, this astronomical event - winter solstice 2018 or December Solstice - will take place at 3:53 am on December 22 IST.

The occasion is a cause for celebration in some regions around the world.

This year it will occur during darkness, at 10.24pm on the 21st, and based on advice from the druid and pagan communities that it works with, the date and time chosen to mark Solstice at Stonehenge is at the first sunrise following the astronomical event. The Long Night Moon is named after the longest night of the year on the winter solstice.

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In the Southern Hemisphere, the seasons are reversed and 21 December is their summer solstice meaning it is the day with the most amount of daylight.

In the Southern Hemisphere, the sun will shine directly overhead at Noon at exactly 23.5 degrees south of the equator, along the imaginary latitude line known as the Tropic of Capricorn, which runs through Australia, Chile, southern Brazil and northern South Africa. The word describes how the sun appears on the earth's horizon to observers. That's the Doodle on search engine Google's page on Winter Solstice day. This tilt in Earth's axis of rotation gives different parts of the planet more exposure to the Sun at different times of the year.

In clear conditions, light from the rising sun lights up the inner chamber of the 5,000-year-old tomb. "The major attraction of the festival are the rice balls called 'Tang Yuan, ' which translate to 'family reunion". The treat is said to bring prosperity and unity.

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