Wednesday, December 26, 2018

The Light and Warmth of the Season

During the winter, the universal feature that we find is the way we light up our world as a way of celebrating. People who follow a Pagan path celebrate the Winter Solstice as return of the sunlight after the longest night of the year enjoy the lights, the fires the candles, the gatherings of friends and family, the warmth of these connections with others and the generosity and good spirits that characterize the season.

Christians, of course, are celebrating the birth of Christ and they light things up because they view him as bringing light to the world, in a different perspective, a blessing from God. Even non-Christians who do not share the same belief systems refer to him as an enlightened teacher and healer.

And the people who celebrate Hanukkah as part of the Jewish tradition celebrate keeping their sacred fire lit back in ancient times when there was only one day's worth of oil left to light their sacred light but miraculously they were able to keep their lights lit for eight days with it. Metaphorically, they kept the light of their faith lit after surviving a grueling battle which they won against overwhleming odds.

So no matter what your reason for celebrating or your tradition, the common thread is that we are celebrating the light in our lives, and so there is some common ground among the various religions and traditions that there is reason for hope, joy and optimism about our survival.

For myself, as I look over the year I am extremely happy at the way things have progressed and the successes I have enjoyed.

Every person's birthday is their new year, but we celebrate the end of the business and tax year at the end of this month, hence the reason for the New Year's holiday.

As I reflect on the various ways I have celebrated in the past and how I celebrate now, there are always fond memories and warm feelings.

Over the years, I have been invited to participate in various Winter Solstice and Christmas parties and events. This year as you see in the calendar section below, I am going to try a new one that someone else created this year. I am grateful for all of you and have included all of you in my gratitude jar. I am sending a hug out to all of you, so close your eyes and feel it as you read this.

I don't know about you, but I have always seen our calendars as a bit off. For example, isn't it goofy that so many calendars declare the Winter Solstice to be the First Day of Winter. Obviously, in the parts of the country where we get snow and ice in Winter, we have had some for quite a while now, and we have our heat and and are wearing warmer clothes. This really is Midwinter and we have more to go. We bring evergreen plants into the house at this time of year as a sign that we are confident that the world will become green again, after all the dark and cold have gone.

Similarly, calendars declare Summer Solstice around June 21 to be the First Day of Summer, but that is not correct either. By that time of June, schools are out, and people have been doing summer things like going to the beach, vacations and baseball games for a while. It really is Midsummer at that time, and is the setting of Shakespeare's play A Midsummer NIght's Dream.

The more we stay in tune with the cycles of nature, the more of a smooth flow we have in our lives. At the heart of this natural cycle, there is an overwhelming feeling in our environment of generosity, kindness, cooperation and love. Whether you are celebrating Hanukkah, Christmas or Winter Solstice, the warmth we create with our fires, heating systems and warm clothes also radiate from the inside out as we express warm feelings for others.

2018 been a 2 year in terms of numerology which featured an emphasis on relationships. And that certainly has been true in my case. How have you experienced this?

I took the time to visit with old friends and family and made new friends. Next issue I will write about 2019 which will be a 3 year. We will see how the new people in our lives and the renewed relationships help us manifest even more magnificent results next year.

Enjoy all these seasonal holidays in the ways you feel appropriate to celebrate.

I love all of you and am always happy to hear from you.

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