A few years ago while I was living in California, a girlfriend invited me to the home of a couple who were holding a Winter Solstice ceremony. Now, I wasn't totally ignorant about the Earth-based traditions, but when I got there I saw: candles; holly and ivy; mistletoe; a punch bowl; and a big fir tree with decorations on it. And I guess my Jewish conditioning must have kicked in, because I almost said:
"Hey, I thought these people were supposed to be pagans! What are they doing with a Christmas tree?!?"
Fortunately it all clicked and I stopped myself just in time. But that's one reason why I can only smile in amusement when the fundie wing of my party goes around passing resolutions to "protect Christmas". Heh. Yeah, right.
Happy solstice, whatever your faith, and may the return of longer days bring good things.