The promise of a fecund, fertile land coming back from a long winter’s sleep. Such are the things we contemplate as the Winter Solstice arrives.
Beginning Dec. 21, the sun seems to halt its month’s-long decline and pauses for four days while rising four times from the same relative place on the horizon. To the Celtic peoples, so I’ve read, it was a time of great rejoicing because– at last!– the sun was preparing for a certain miracle.
So those four days were a time of celebration! And of sacred reflection.
The Celts apparently called it the time for standing still, just like the sun seemed to be doing. Most assuredly, the Celts may have found it difficult to stand at all if they had imbibed much tasty mead during the partying! But almost as certain for them was the assurance that the quartet of days would present times of reflection on the year past and the hoped-for miracle on December 25 and the year ahead.
The miracle– return of the sun! For it is on that day that ‘Ol Sol slowly begins to reassert its dominance of the sky and the birth of spring in less than 90 days! Daylight begins to last longer even as the snow continues to pile up across the landscape.
So I hope you will give a try at honoring the stillness of this season like the old Celts did. It’s fine to have a cup of cheer, but take some time to look back over the year behind you. And then look forward. The promise of a fresh New Year awaits. Can you make it the best year ever for yourself, for those you love, for all peoples and for this Good Earth?
It is a good thing to pause and take stock. Then, before you know it, the redbuds will replace the snow.
Aho & Namaste,