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Winter Solstice: All is Calm. All is Bright

Sacred Practices & Ritual for Winter Solstice


(Photo I took of Orion over the temple at Karnak in Egypt, Solstice 2022)


Winter Solstice, December 21st at 10:27 PM EST this year- the shortest period of daylight, longest night of the year. (For a simple visual explanation of the seasons and sun cycle, click here) Some cultures see it as the official beginning of winter season (at least in the Northern hemisphere!), others as mid-winter. The time of year when the sun has reached it's pinnacle of "death" and begins to "rebirth", with the lengthening amount of daylight. The time when many peoples and cultures all over the world celebrated and feasted in preparation for the barren times of winter, and many of the holidays that we now celebrate were rooted from (think Yule and Christmas). I tend to honor Winter Solstice as my direct connection to earth and its cycles, reveling in the dark and a time to shut down, shut off, go inward. Where I remember that all creations need time to hibernate, rot, and decompose. This is the natural cycle - in contrast to the false human-imposed cycle of constant growth, production and expansion. So I relish Winter Solstice as my signal to stop, drop into the space of quiet. Space of the dark, the womb where all seeds begin and are planted and germinate. In the dark - not in the light. This is where seeds begin - all of life begins. In the dark, in the unseen, in the invisible.


Here are a few suggestions for how you can add Simple Sacred practice into welcoming in winter. Celebrating the dark. Where the seeds of new life can be planted....


Meditatice Practice: Dark and Starry Night - Sitting in Stillness

Go outside on a clear starry night, Solstice night preferably - no light, no candle. Sit under the stars in any comfortable, warm and cozy way (here it's below freezing! So I will have wooly hat and blankie...). Sit. Close your eyes. Simply receive the stillness, the quiet.

Sit.

Be Still.

Being.

Stilling.

Free of the commotion and constant motion of day/sun/light and waking doing and going. Sit in the dark and be....

Breathe this stillness and darkness for a few minutes or as long as you feel, allowing your body to breathe it in fully.

Now open your eyes and receive the light of the stars shining down their cosmic divine energy over you. Receive the Brightness of Star light. Only visible in the dark, when the sun is not overwhelming them with it's "Get up and Do, Get out there and Go, Be Seen and Visible" solar power. Receive the light that shines in the dark without effort. Receive the stars....

Imagine now that this celestial stillness drifts down over you, like snowflakes that lazily drift down and gently touch your skin. Absorbing this starlight around you, through you, so that you become immersed in it. Imagine immersing fully in this river, this wind breath of celestial light.

Receiving.

Receiving.

Gently, still-ly, receiving.

Nothing for you to do.

Stars shining in the dark and through the stillness.

Receive any messages that appear to you from the stars (as knowings, inner seeings or hearings). Receiving without doing.

Thank the stars. Thank the dark. Thank the Stillness for the reminder that who you are is still there, in the dark, in the night. Just as the stars are still there during the day, but unseen in the sunlight.

Spend a few minutes now just gazing around at the awesome stars - and maybe if you are lucky, you will see a shooting star!!

OPTION: turn off the lights in your house and spend as much of the rest of the evening in the dark and quiet. Focus on receiving and not doing. Listening. Stilling. Just Breathing and Being. Even better, create time every day for just sitting in the dark, being still.


Beauty Ritual: Shower in the Dark


Prepare to take a shower in the dark - place a soft thick towel on the tub/shower floor as you will be sitting on it. Start the shower, adjusting the temperature so it's warm and comfortable, not too hot. Reduce the water flow to a gentle light stream. If you are safely able to do so, turn off the lights in your bathroom , step into the shower and sit on the shower floor. Sit under the shower stream such that it gently flows over your head and body in any way that feels good. Sit with your eyes closed, receiving the feel of the water gently flowing onto your skin, and over your body. Move and adjust your position as often as you feel, so that your entire body receives the gentle flow of the water. Immerse yourself in the sensory feelings of your body here in the dark, water flowing over. Allow the time and space for your mind and nervous system to calm, still and reset into the sensory relief of the dark, warm and gentle skin sensations. Breathe. Sit. Reset without Doing. Receive the flow, and all you need to do is sit.

Imagine the water becoming like a waterfall of Divine Celestial Energy showering down from the cosmos. Gently caressing your skin - warming and soothing.

Immerse yourself in your "Star Shower" as long as it feels good - reminding yourself of the divine cosmic flow of life that flows in around you all the time, and you need to do nothing to receive it. Just Receive.

When done with your "Star Shower of Divine Flow" step out, pat yourself with a towel such that you are not dripping wet, but don't fully towel off. (Turn on a small light or even light a candle if you need for safety). Wrap yourself up in thick towel as if imagining wrapping yourself up in the Divine Celestial Energy. Simply be in the space of quiet and dark, or with only the light of a candle wrapped up in your towel/robe for the rest of the night if possible, to allow your nervous system to continue to reset from the space of "doing" into an energy of "being".

OPTIONAL: slather your entire body in a thick decadent body butter cream/lotion as if to encourage the energy that you received from the shower to be absorbed into and deeply held in your body. Of course, only use non-toxic products. Even better, make one for yourself!


"Look at the stars, Look how they shine for you." – Coldplay, Yellow

Playful Beauty Tip: Sparkly Nails & Eyes


In honor of the stars and stillness, paint your nails with silver or sparkly polish. As if the stars are touching the earth through you and all that you touch is an extension of Divine Cosmic energy. Your touch bringing sparkle and beauty and delight to the earth!

Use mineral eye shadow (always non-toxic only!) that's silver, metallic or sparkly. See the world through eyes of this sparkle and brightness, where everything is a spark of divinity and brightness and magic exist all around us!


Altar Space Creative Practice: Snowflakes!

** This creative practice is great to add onto your Star Sitting Process or Star Shower Ritual


Make paper snowflakes (find some easy instructions here) and place them around your house/altar area with the intent of surrounding yourself with any insights, words or phrases that dropped in during your time of stillness under the stars. To give yourself a reminder that the gentle support of the Divine Cosmic life force is always there, drifting down like snowflakes, surrounding you all of the time.




Whatever you do this solstice, may you find yourself surrounded in gentleness and stillness. And that within the quiet of yourself that indeed "All is Calm. All is Bright" And I for one intend to "Sleep in heavenly Peace" under the solstice starry skies. Blessings to you all! ~ Emma


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