Today, December 21st, we celebrate the Winter Solstice ~ a turning of the wheel that gives us the opportunity to connect with the subtle changes and cycles of the season and help us attune with the inner changes and cycles in ourselves. This is a beautiful day in this hectic time to remember the miracles that surround us daily.
Solstice comes from the Latin words, sol, meaning sun, and sistere, meaning to stand still. It was named Solstice as it appeared as if the sun and moon stopped moving across the sky ~ as if time stood still for just that mere second ~ and maybe it does!
Although it is the longest night of the year, it is also the start of the solar year ~ the rebirth of the Sun. It can be a beautiful time to remember that our lives are part of a larger energy, always changing, always renewing.
I hope you all placed your intentions under the Dark New Moon in Sagittarius ~ the last new moon of the year. Now as we move into the Winter Solstice, the longest night of the year, I hope that you will bring those intentions forward again ~ or if you did not place your intention, this is a second beautiful chance to plant and seed.
Taking time for rituals with personal meaning serve as touchstones to help you to open to receiving and internalizing the magic that surrounds you. Here are a few simple rituals for you. Remember to create your space. Light a candle, incense or sage or gather some Evergreen to fill your house with the smell of the woods ~ evergreen symbolizes the continuity of life, protection and prosperity.
- Host a Tea Ceremony: do this alone or with friends and family. Below is a lovely tea with herbs that are magical for this seasonal time:
- Any type of apple (or use apple cider)
- Star anise
- One clove
- One cinnamon stick
Wash and cut the apple and boil it in ~ 5 cups of water for 5-6 minutes. Add the clove, anise and cinnamon stick and let everything sit for 5-10 minutes. Strain and if you like add raw honey or another sweetener.
Sit in the dark and drink your tea ~ find a place where you can experience quiet and tune into the silence while sipping your tea. No need to think about what to do ~ just enjoy the taste, smell and feel of the tea in silence. Silence and darkness are soothing to the soul. Drink the second cup. Open to your magical self and all that you carry inside ~ its there for you.
- Get a pomegranate and take out 12 seeds ~ throw each seed, one at a time, into a fire (fireplace, fire pit or even just a bowl of burning incense. Make a wish for the New Year as you throw each one into the fire. And don’t be afraid to dream big <3.
- Light a circle of candles and make loving wishes for friends, family, co-workers or even those in need as you light each of them.
- Watch the sun rise or set ~ ring bells or throw out seeds to offer to the winter birds. Give thanks for both the darkness and the light.
- Celebrate with silence. Reflect on the stillness of this shortest day. Cultivate stillness in yourself by honoring the solstice with an hour of intentional silence.
And please, if you cannot do any of these rituals on the winter solstice itself ~ please make a time between now and the new year to share a quiet moment with you. Let it be your present to yourself.
I believe in miracles.