Ancient people lived in close relationship with nature. In their seasonal rituals, they aligned their energy with natural forces and together turned the Wheel of the Seasons, moving it from one to another. To turn the Wheel – to go on to the next season, we must first let go of where we are. But letting go of the past at this time of year requires us to enter the darkness.
The dark days of winter give us time to reflect upon our lives and to allow our feelings to emerge. These days of quiet reflection can give us new opportunities to evaluate our lives and choose our goals for the coming year. If we take this time for ourselves and listen to our inner needs and desires, we may be better prepared to set our course for the seasons ahead in harmony with our own unique god-spirit within. Understanding the darkness as a positive force in our lives can help us overcome any fear we might have of the dark.
As Fred Wooden writes:
Darkness is a time for solitude, quiet, sleep, intimacy. Imagine the power and the beauty of darkness: children in the womb, seeds in the ground, sleeping and dreaming, rest and peace, eyes closed while listening to music. Darkness is the fertile earth which receives all in death and brings forth life from its black womb.
On the Solstice, take time to sit in the dark. When you are ready to emerge, light a candle. Say out loud:
The tide has turned!
The light will come again!
In a new dawn, in a new day,
The sun is rising!
We are awake in the night!
We turn the Wheel to bring the light!
We call the sun from the womb of the night!
Then celebrate with songs of joy and prepare to enjoy the new season of returning light.
One by one, in tiny increments,
candle by candle, gesture by effort,
wish by prayer, concern by care,
we feed the life-fires of the soul
and light the infinite universe,
little by little from within.
by Donna Henes
Take hands; for we are the circle of rebirth. If there is to be renewal, it begins with us. We can touch . . . . We can know the dark, and dream it into a new image. As life, friends. As source. Blessed Be.