December 21st marked the longest night of the year in the Northern Hemisphere. And today is Christmas. This is the time of year when Mother Earth seems to be dead and lifeless. It can be difficult to believe that spring will ever return when a cold wind blows all night and icy sleet covers the ground. And yet, the days will slowly lengthen from here; the earth will warm and six months from now, we will awaken to the longest day of the year. Nature’s rhythmic seasonal cycle is one of the innate blessings of life on Earth.
For me, winter solstice is about embracing Mother Earth as she rests for a season. It’s about learning to love the dark, quiet energies of winter and death.
My Celtic ancestors called this dark season Seed Time; long, cold, dark winter nights are the perfect time to dream of the life we want to create in the new year. Just as Mother Nature gently holds flower seeds safe in her dark soil until it is time for them to stir and grow, we too can honor our dreams for the new year by holding them safe within our hearts in these dark cold days. We can gently love each little dream and nurture it until the right and perfect time comes for it to grow into a new reality.
To everything, there is a season. And now tis the season to dream big and seed the new year. This song by Enya celebrates dreaming in the dark quiet of winter:
Ely siriar, el sila
Ai! Aniron UndomielTiro! El eria e mor
I ‘lir en el luitha ‘uren.
Dreams flow, a star shines
Ah! desire EvenstarLook! A star rises out of the darkness
The song of the star enchants my heart
Ah! I desire…
Lyrics by Roma Ryan