She changes everything She touches
We are fast approaching what could easily be the most important of all the times in the year. The Winter Solstice is both a point of changelessness and a time when all changes. Of course the Summer Solstice is this too but I would argue that the darkness of Winter adds its own special magic that cannot be matched in the intense light of Summer. Our ancestors built many fine stone structures carefully aligned to the Winter Solstice. So it must have been a time of great importance for them also. Some have argued that they did this because they were fearful that the declining sun would set for ever bringing eternal darkness on the world. Personally I find this hard to believe for they must have known that the wheel of the year turns with utter constancy. Earlier still our distant grandmothers must have seen the faithful cycles of the sun and the moon carrying on through the dramatic climate change and floods of the ending ice-age.
I would guess that the Winter Solstice is important because it combines a moment of poise and stillness - that only the dark can provide - with a real change of direction. Everything goes on but nothing is quite the same again. This echoes our experience of those Solstice moments of life; birth, menarch, leaving home and cleaving to another, death ... Womb moments.
Almost by accident, or more likely through the magic of Goddess, I recently found myself having an email correspondence with a wonderful woman about some of the Solstice moments of my early life. It struck me that all the Solstice moments of life have been the result of one or both of two things; listening to another and / or being touched by another. To listen or be truly touched we have to be brought to the point of stillness. Only then can we be truly open to the other. Then we must enter the creative dark where all seems confused and uncertain and anything can happen. Then the light rises. Then all seems the same but there is that deep awareness that things will never be the same again.
The more we listen, the more we open to touch, the more frequent such Solstice moments become. Utter life changing Solstice moments are rare magical events but every day has its little Solstice moments. In the darkness we process them in our dreams and a new day dawns like no other. This is how the Goddess loves, nurtures and tests us. This is what makes life such an amazing journey.
My beautiful, magical, intuitive daughter is pregnant for the very first time. One of the questions that always arises is, what gender will the new child be? Without any collusion at all I have discovered that my daughter, my partner and I have all had a deep intuitive feeling that the child is a girl. Today, my daughter has had a scan and was told they are 99.5% certain it is a girl. We are all so thrilled. My deepest wish is that this new woman will be blessed with magic and intuition. That she will be a born listener, open to touch, wonder awe and beauty. That she will have many Solstice moments and find a worthy place with the Grandmothers. She is expected to make her first cry to the Goddess at Beltane.
Amazingly this blog has made it into its third year. Whatever you call your Winter Festival and however you celebrate it, may it bring you many blessings.