For the next few weeks, the days get shorter and shorter culminating on the shortest day of the year on the Winter Solstice. Since ancient times, this time of year has been a season of celebrating and holding the light as we experience increasing darkness outside.
These pagan traditions to celebrate the Winter Solstice were aimed at assuring the Sun would return after the shortest days and give its benevolent light and warmth again in the coming year, assuring the prosperity of the harvest.
Moonbow from December 2019
I especially feel the need to celebrate and hold the light this year, as we witness a time of darkness in the world. On one hand, I'm referring to the coming of Winter. On the other hand, I also mean the darkness we feel with the increasing cases and deaths due to the pandemic and the many hardships families are facing this year.
One of my favorite aspects of the holidays are the traditions surrounding preserving the light. I love the lighted Christmas tree, the Luminarias, the Holiday Light Parades, and people's festive, over-the-top home lighting displays! In general, this is a really magical and beautiful time of the year.
It is really important this year that we keep aware of and share our inner light, as well as celebrate the light in a more traditional way. Here are 5 safe and socially distant ways to share and celebrate the light this holiday season:
#5 Decorate with lights to cheer up your home environment. There are so many amazing LED light options available out there for decorative purposes (such as our Illuminotes). My go-to is the traditional Christmas tree.
"Silver Snowflakes" Illuminote by Liquiterra
#4 Do an Art Project to feed the inner light. I made the piece below as a meditation on perserving the inner light in dark times. This is a mixed media collage using hand-made paper, acrylic paint, and modge podge on a canvas board.
"Preserving the Inner Light", mixed media meditation piece by Sydney Francis
#3 Give Thanks on social media. I watched this inspirational video by a US religious leader last week, he advocated for "giving thanks" and sharing your gratitude daily on social media for one week. This is a lovely and safe way to share your inner light with others.
#2 Make a charitable donation to build the light and hope in others. Perhaps we already know the value of charitable giving. I like to focus my donations on non-profits that speak to my heart. This year, I am donating to Threaded Together AZ, which teaches underserved women vocational skills to help them to get higher paying jobs or go into business for themselves.
#1 Create a Zoom Ritual to share with friends, family and loved ones. A Zoom Ritual is a great way to connect and do something meaningful together. I'm hosting a Zoom Ritual on Winter Solstice to connect with friends. We will likely make an art piece like the collage pictured above, chat, and maybe have a festive drink. To make your own ritual, consider what kinds of activities you enjoy and what is easy for all the participants to get together. For example, the collage above can be made on cardboard with scraps of paper.