This wonder-inspiring power of the night sky is the backdrop to the traditional picture of the Christ coming into the world and also the light that makes the night sky not so dark and blank. The star serves as a companion image to the solstice—light appearing in the dark. And so it is a perfect image for the spirit of Christmas, a time when we are particularly overtaken by darkness and in need of light.
The star gives image to our potentiality. It is out there in space, up and away from the earth. It’s a shining beacon, another world, utopia. Christmas, too, is a kind of utopian interlude set between the harsh realities of contemporary life. Allow yourself some foolish celebrating, some unreal and sentimental goodness. If someone asks, say that you’re following that star in the sky.
—from the book The Soul of Christmas by Thomas Moore