Sunday, December 23, 2018
It has been a few weeks. My heart has not been in the blog much of late. For those of you who don't know I had a death in the family early in December. I'd been expecting it for a while, but it still sidelined me for a bit. I'd been involved in caregiving for my grandmother for the past eleven years. This year her health rapidly declined. She was 98 when she passed away. I've kept up with my weekly prayer ceremony commitments and teaching my classes, but after that I just didn't have much energy to write. I also didn't have much to say.
Friday was the winter solstice, the longest night of the year. I've often referred to my winter solstice drumming as the movable ceremony. I never seem to have it in the same place two years in a row. This year I held it at the Louisville Spiritualist Center. We drummed for 3 rounds with a short break in between them. The first round was for gratitude. The second round was to call in our guides and helpers. The third round we gifted our light to the darkness within us.
Drumming ceremonies can be very simple. You call in the directions to create sacred space. You set an intention, and then you drum a steady beat. Our first round seemed to take the most energy to get everyone in sync. During the second round, it flowed much smoother and I even had guidance for the third round come in (which makes sense since that round was about calling in our guides). The third round was pure magic. When the tempo changed for me, nobody missed a beat we all changed our rhythm at the exact same moment as if we shared a single mind. Time also seemed to stretch. The drumming sessions seemed to last for a very long time, but after all the rounds we still had a half hour left in the scheduled event time. It still amazes me that just by the simple beat of the drum we were able to form a temporary telepathic bond, and alter the perceived flow of time. Afterwards I felt like someone had hit the reset button on my energy.
Darkness can be disorienting, so can loss. Right now I am not sure which direction I am going. I don't have to know today or tomorrow. I can take my time to get realigned. Ceremonies are useful to help us orient ourselves in the world. By honoring things like the seasonal turning points we synchronize our rhythms to the rhythms of nature. Like all the drummers playing together, we are stronger when we are aligned. I felt very grateful to be able to share that with others. Our numbers came to 17 for the ceremony. In tarot the 17th card of the major arcana is the Star. It is a card of hope, dreams, and transcendence.
Why am I telling you this? Well for many people 2018 was a brutal slog through loss and discouragement. We are in the dark half of the year where our inner strength and attitude is tested. It is no accident that our ancestors began these holiday celebrations at these times. It is the time where human beings need to come together and celebrate the most. We need the warmth, not just in our bodies but our hearts as well. Sharing joy in company is what makes the season shine in the memories of children their whole life. As life progresses though things happen, hearts break, people pass on, and we can be left feeling only the loss for what was, instead of trying to create that love and warmth in new ways with new people.
So in this dark time, love as much as you can. If you need to grieve, then grieve. If you feel alone, seek other lost souls who feel the same and comfort them. Be the star that others find their way by. Find a way to bring joy to yourself and one another. That for me is the true reason for the season.
Peace and Blessings,