For two weeks, I have been ‘thickening’, deepening. It is harder to think, harder to work and much harder to spin bright threads of words. I find myself turned inward, interior, contemplative. Perhaps spring will find me talkative again. For now, winter’s cloak is wrapped fully round my shoulders, quieting me, pressing me down into myself.
Yesterday, two friends asked: where is your post about the winter solstice? I responded, as a bear caught napping, might. I yawned, rolled up to peek over the edge of this sleepiness to consider… what shall I say?
Winter solstice is a turning point. We have descended as far from the sun as it is possible, in the arc of a year, to be. And today, just two days into winter, though we have begun our ascent, we are still so very far from the light.
Where I live, it will be dark by 5:00 p.m and, though the weather is mild, there’s something in the air which chills me to the bone – an ancient wisdom, whispering: light a fire, make soup, quiet down.
The light toward which you turn is not in the sky, it whispers. The light that you seek lies within.
Today, on the darkest day of the year, as I call you to my campfire to talk about light. I am reminded of something WIlliam Wordsworth wrote, Come forth into the light of things. Let nature be your teacher.
We cannot resist nature – we can pretend that we, humans, are not animals; not earthlings. But we are. When we let nature lead us, we learn to move with its cycles – to live ‘shorter’ in winter, to let the length of our days be determined by the length of the light. In this way, when we awaken in spring, we’ll be renewed, refreshed and ready for the blossoming and blooming.
Today, watching shoppers crowd into the cafe, I find wisdom in the I Ching.
“The powerful light that has been banished returns. There is movement but it is not brought about by force.” Rather, the I Ching tells us, the light returns naturally, spontaneously. Our work is devotion – to the organic unfolding of the light which inevitably comes, in its own way, in its own time.
“The idea of return is based on the course of nature,” the I Ching explains. “The movement is cyclic, and the course completes itself. Therefore it is not necessary to hasten anything artificially. Everything comes of itself at the appointed time.”
Today, though there is much to be done before the celebrations of the light, take the time to remember that all is unfolding as it will and as it should be. Take the time that you need to nourish and renew yourself. Reconnect with these simple truths: all is well; all is one and it is good - and let yourself sink into the depth that is offered by winter, the depth where you will find the light.
~ Happy Holidays from my home to yours. xxoo
Here are the goodies I’ve collected for you this Inspiration Friday:
Your Other Names. A book of poems from Tara Sophia Mohr. Inspiring.
A lovely cup of tea… (If you follow me on Twitter, you may know that I’ve been trying to track down the distributors who provide my favorite restaurant with its wonderful house blend tea. It finally occurred to me that I could just ask at the restaurant.)
Finally, this reminder, from poet David Whyte, that you are never alone.
Your great mistake is to act the drama
as if you were alone. As if life
were a progressive and cunning crime
with no witness to the tiny hidden
transgressions. To feel abandoned is to deny
the intimacy of your surroundings. Surely,
even you, at times, have felt the grand array;
the swelling presence, and the chorus, crowding
out your solo voice. You must note
the way the soap dish enables you,
or the window latch grants you freedom.
Alertness is the hidden discipline of familiarity.
The stairs are your mentor of things
to come, the doors have always been there
to frighten you and invite you,
and the tiny speaker in the phone
is your dream-ladder to divinity.
Put down the weight of your aloneness and ease into
the conversation. The kettle is singing
even as it pours you a drink, the cooking pots
have left their arrogant aloofness and
seen the good in you at last. All the birds
and creatures of the world are unutterably
themselves. Everything is waiting for you.