Hakaz Estsan (“Cold Woman”) is the Navajo Goddess of Winter and of cold weather in general. Her main area of influence is the far north. In Navajo belief it is recognized that without this goddess the world would become too hot, causing all living things to die and the oceans, rivers and lakes to boil away. She is depicted naked sitting in the snow. Her tears are the sleet and snow that falls from the sky.
The Winter Solstice, the return of the Sun, was truly a cause for celebration among our ancestors. Yule begins on Mother Night. At Yule, the Goddess shows her Life-in-Death aspect. In this season, she is the White Lady Queen of the cold darkness; yet this is her moment of giving birth to the child of promise who brings back light and warmth to her kingdom.