“Joy and woe are woven fine, A clothing for the soul divine…” — William Blake
Winter solstice, the year’s end! My favorite time of the year. The veil thins between worlds. The mystery of a loving universe, our trust in the light, seems to shout for notice in song, celebration, and expressions of care.
Warmth inside reaches out with cards, gifts, prayer, giving, and forgiving. The Christ Light paradoxically glows with more insistence now. Sometimes when I pay deep attention, I can sense, almost unbelievably, angel-like forms caressing my heart with butterfly kisses. No wonder so many believe in angels.
Our lives follow the seasons, each on our own cycle of beginnings, growth, and the bittersweet of endings. Our individual dark days internally can come on anytime, of course. For many who read my posts, they have been brought on by shock, trauma, loss, betrayal, heartbreak.
Little Signs of Light in the Dark
During nature’s winter, we can take at least two cues from her for enduring these dark times.
First, we can practice patience—that underrated wintery virtue. When we are hurting, it can seem like the dark days will never end. We feel stuck on a frozen plain of numbness, lethargy and depression. Or trapped in a seemingly endless cycle of sadness, anger, pain or disappointment hovering around like avenging Furies.
When the heart is broken (and I believe we all are broken hearted down deep, but that is another subject), we need to take tiny steps to rebuild trust. We need slowly to re-enter that hurting place where the light still glows within.
This brings us to the second inspiration from the dark days of winter. We need to nurture faith and trust that the light will return. Despite a conviction that the winter will never end, how important it is now to linger with, nourish, and celebrate any goodness that comes our way.
The smaller, the more ordinary the goodness; the better!
The morning sunrise glinting through the trees, the wag of the dog’s tail prancing by, the low shadows of late afternoon, the smile of a stranger, an inspiring idea in a book or movie, the first sip of coffee or tea, the rush of pleasure from a hot shower, or the warm coziness of crawling into bed. These are seed moments! They plant hopefulness on the barren plain of heartbreak.
So, let’s not allow these little moments of life’s goodness to go unnoticed. Nurtured, they begin to rebuild the heart’s strength. Stop, pause, breathe, drink in the sensations, whispering a little prayer of thank you, thank you, thank you. For this warmth, this sweetness, this beauty, this breath; for this life, this miracle…here, now.
Soon we discover these little signs of light rekindling our trust. Astonishingly, we begin to sense that even this hurt is bringing us to greater goodness and light than we have ever known before.
“Love and the Mystery of Betrayal”— available in print and ebook.
A powerful book that will serve many.—Tara Brach, PhD.
Soul-satisfying empathy and validation, as well as higher-self, love-focused guidance on how to respond and heal. A rare combination.—K. Later, Amazon
thank you for this deep inspiration, Sandy!
I love this reflection. My favorite time of year as well. So rich. Thanks for writing about it so beautifully.
Thank you, Sandy, for your warmth and generosity, reminding us in a new year to share the richness of the “small moments.” (Your words remind me of Rick Hansen’s work and his book “Hardwiring Happiness.” ) I think it was through you that I first heard the poetic idea of the thin veil between worlds in the wintertime, when all of nature is turning inward, strengthening for the growth of new wood, new flower…new fruit. I know I turn inward beginning in the autumn, just like my garden. Thank you for all you are Sandy, all you share with others, and the bright light you hold. May you have a rich and fulfilling 2018. Love, Susie
thank you dear friend for the uplifting message that reaches through time. we can easily imagine generations pondering the light and being moved by the Hope it offers. I have spent some days recently walking by the sea, impressed deeply by the greyness that goes out forever and the sky that pulls the grey into all else. It is melancholic, yet the deep mystery draws my heart to remember the light. Maybe not today, maybe not next week, but it will return ever so gradually lifting the seeds of Hope to flower once again.