Today, in the Northern Hemisphere, we celebrate the Winter Solstice. As the shortest day and longest night of the year, the Solstice marks the turn from darkness to the rebirth of light.
Light is EVERYWHERE this time of year. Sure, sunset is earlier. But as the sun dips below the horizon in a blaze of golden glory, small lights flicker to life on every street.
I don’t know about where you live, but around me there are a record number of holiday lights (Christmas, Yule, Winter Solstice, and lingering Diwali) hanging from the eaves of houses, framing windows, adorning bushes and trees. White, cool blue, and multi-colors twinkle as they form a tableau for other decorations.
It lights my way home, like a trail of twinkling breadcrumbs. I can see the lights in my yard from the top of the hill at the beginning of my street, beckoning me through the spaces in the evergreens.
Small, sparkling lights possess a hypnotic and calming effect. I can watch my Christmas/Yule tree lights for hours, their glitter reflecting off the shine of ornaments and metallic garland beads. The holiday season can be a source of both joy and stress, but spending thirty minutes by yourself in silence (or with some beautiful instrumental holiday music), melts any of the crazy away.
If you prefer, there’s the soft glow of candlelight, whether outside glowing in a serpentine path underneath luminaria bags, or inside your home atop the mantelpiece.
In the fireplace, the Yule log burns away the old year, building fresh promise upon ashes, transforming any pain and disappointment into hope and excitement for the new year.
During this most reflective time of year, there is much light in the dark. In fact, without the dark, how else would you see the light? Stars spread across the velvet sky, their ancient light providing mystery and wonder. There’s a full moon on Christmas Night, the first since 1977, an occurrence we won’t see again until 2034.
There’s a spark of magic in all this light, if you keep your eyes, mind, and heart open. That same spark of magic light lives in all of us. It’s there, whether or not you’ve felt it, seen it, or manifested it.
Here’s the key: You are your own light.
Don’t wait for someone else’s light to follow. Don’t wait for someone else to ignite your spark. Don’t wait for someone else to feed your fire. They can’t. They can inspire you, but kindling the spark? That’s all you.
“Light your fire and lead your own way.”
Have a Merry Yule, full of mirth and magic!!
By Syndee Barwick