To native people, this is the time of the long cold and hunger.
People did without to survive.
This is the shortest day and longest night of the year. It signifies the rebirth of the sun, the days getting longer. It holds wonderful energy for rebirth, and self reflection. It begins a new year cycle.
It is the transition point between the seasons.
Today, these things signify for us personal awareness and transformation
The bulk of our modern rituals for this season revolve around light returning. That emphasis instills hope and gives us confidence through Winter Solstice that light is coming. However, we’ve vested in that hopefulness as an elected way to bypass developing skills to cope with darkness.
We emphasize returning sunlight rather than sitting with darkness. We defer to the light to do our emotional and psychological heavy lifting for us. Humans are very unskilled at sitting with now and processing what’s in the present. That lack of mindfulness is the heart of seasonal distress.
The Dark Time is Nature’s way of having us be still and deal with our shit, of tending hearth and harvest.
In the modern era, we’ve turned that seasonal rejection of darkness inward. We’ve internalized that ancient state of constant light chasing as the endless quest to become better souls.
We’ve created a culture based in constant pushing to expand, enlighten, and grow. These are all “light” qualities that by the New Age are hallmarks of an evolved being.
Through that state we’ve learned to demonize anything that isn’t love and light, including aspects of ourselves.
Yet sooner or later, we must do that work.
When we don’t take the time we need at a psychological, emotional, physical level to process our soul work, we’re avoiding Shadow. As a result, we end up in what’s known as a spiritual emergency.
We arrive in a place where our emotional skill set can’t keep up with our spiritual shifts.
The result of that imbalance is acute spiritual crisis.
So this is the time of sustaining ourselves and applying skills we’ve learned through spiritual work for the rest of the year, so that we can process it to become an internalized, full, embodied being.
This process is what replenishes us and readies us for spring, as well as ensures we have a foundation for coping with what the year brings.
Most of us don’t do well under duress.
When we are in the dark isn’t the best time to begin learning how to cope with it.
Ideally we need to cultivate a baseline of solid ground to stand on.
No matter when you begin, start small. Broad sweeping change is more likely to fail.
Make one small change. Small gestures snowball into big ones that evoke change and every small thing we do heals from within if done with integrity.
This is a time to “not be” harsh with yourself about your own darkness. It is a time of quiet energy, a time to look within and see what your needs are.
Examine what self care means to you.
This a time to truly look at your self care, inner and outer. Are you giving enough to yourself?