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Subscribe to this list via RSS Blog posts tagged in Winter Solstice

Posted by on in SageWoman Blogs

“Beginnings and endings are so very sacred, to give honor to all that has transpired, every experience, every joy, every pain, is a doorway to the magical. Hold your entire year between your hands, every day, every thought, every breath. Now bless it with gratitude, love and humility. You have done more to transform this new year than a thousand resolutions.” 

 –K. Allen Kay

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Winter Fires: A Solstice Story in Two Parts

Part One

Lily pulled on her warmest coat and snow boots, ready for an adventure outside. Snow had been falling for several hours and she loved the quiet that descended when the ground was blanketed in fluffy white snow. Even the coziness and warmth of her cottage could not entice her to stay inside and miss the chance of walking at sunset through the woods that bordered her home.

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Recent Comments - Show all comments
  • Robin Fennelly
    Robin Fennelly says #
    Thank you!
  • Tasha Halpert
    Tasha Halpert says #
    Sweetly written and much appreciated. looking forward to the next installment. Thanks! Solstice Blessings, Tasha

Posted by on in SageWoman Blogs

“As candles burn and bells jingle, b2ap3_thumbnail_47491592_2230010993877777_8518271185765531648_o.jpg
Remember the dark and the quiet.
They are the reason for the season,
And should be held as dear.”

—Kay Holt

As I have noted in other recent posts, the bustle of the winter holiday season often seems completely at odds with the natural inner pull towards quiet and stillness in the winter. December offers us a quiet invitation for stillness and contemplation.

How do you balance the twin pulls of the season? The go and do in the sparkling lights with the withdraw and hibernate in the dim cave?

One way I have been coping, perhaps counterintuitively, is by making sure I do things that I "don't have time" to do. Sometimes that sensation of not having time is the most reliable indicator there is that you
need exactly what it is you are saying you don't have time for!  Those are often the very things that replenish my spirit and leave me smiling. 

I've continued to go semi-regularly to a yin yoga class in a nearby town. Even though I practice yoga by myself every b2ap3_thumbnail_47681849_2231842440361299_610620843411636224_o.jpgmorning and have for eighteen years, it is really nice self-care treat to go to this class.  
I have also been going to a weekend art circle facilitated by a good friend. At the second circle we drank homemade hot chocolate and colored pictures in a blanket fort. I even just laid flat on the floor on a pile of pillows in the blanket fort for a while doing nothing. It was so nice!

Breathe deep.
Stay open.
Expand.
Reach.
Feel.
Breathe more.

Return to your center.

 

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Serious Big Magic

Shit.

Something has gone seriously wrong.

Haven't you noticed? The days just keep getting shorter and shorter.

Every day the Sun goes farther and farther South.

Every day its highest point in the sky gets lower and lower.

If this keeps going, soon it won't rise at all.

It just keeps getting colder and colder. We keep getting more and more snow.

If this keeps up, we're all going to freeze in the dark, if we don't run out of food first.

If we don't do something soon, we're all gonna die.

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
A Liberal Dose of Yuletide Spirit

(or no two snowflakes are exactly alike – and that's pretty cool)

2017 has been quite a year, in more ways than one. At times, it can be a challenge to stay hopeful about what lies ahead in the future. Many of we free-spirited and open-minded nature lovers must find our simple pleasures where we can. If those of us adversely affected by the new tax plan put our minds to it, we can still stay positive and find some things to celebrate this holiday season that retain meaning and joy. It occurred to me that some of the best ways to do this, would be to act in a fashion about as anti-greed, anti-bigotry, and anti-big business corporate mindset as possible. Here's how you can proceed in 8 effective ways, in honor
of each of the eight sabbats:

1. Either opt not to exchange gifts and just spend time together; or keep it extremely simple. When I say simple, I mean price cap it at $12-$15 tops. Or, just stick to recycled white elephants or home-made presents. 2. If you do have a tree, keep it natural. These are healthier for the environment. Decorate with mementos of loved ones who have passed on, in the tradition of the Celts. 3. Make donations! Share charitably what you can for your favorite causes. Endangered animals, LGBT rights, public television and radio, Puerto Rico, and absolutely anything to do with the environment are just a few groups who would all love your help about now. If you can't donate money, share your time and volunteer for a local chapter. 4. Speaking of donations, clean out your clothes closet already. Anything you haven't worn all year or are saving for someday, pass it on instead to your local resale shop. 5. Bake some gingerbread cookies, but don't bother with icing if you don't feel like it. Personally, I just love the spicy molasses flavor and the way they make my kitchen smell. Instead of men, make gingerbread women, wildlife creatures (I am the proud owner of a wolf
cutout), or moon and star shapes. Don't hoard them. Make a few dozen and bring some along to share at each of your holiday parties. 6. Every morning you wake up frustrated after reading the news, sign as many petitions as you possibly can. Keep fighting the good fight, no matter what. It's only when we roll over and give up that dreams die, too. 7. Send an eco-friendly ecard. World Wildlife Fund always has a very nice selection at this time of year. 8. Watch all the goofy feel-good holiday movies that still make you feel good that you can. Od on the innocence of it. Two of my go-tos annually are Albert Finney in the 70s musical version of "Scrooge," and the original "Rudolph." The still timely messages in them both, never cease to warm my heart.

When you light the nightly candles, meditate on the world that you most want to live in. Let's all make it our goal next year to do everything we can to make that happen. Peace.

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Posted by on in SageWoman Blogs

A Winter Solstice Blessing

May you have a warm heart, 
open hands,
a creative mind.
May you experience inspiration and brilliance,
clarity and focus.
May you laugh richly and deeply.
May you circle and celebrate,
may you change and grow
May that which is waiting to be unlocked
be freed.
And may you soar with the knowing
that you are carried by a great wind across the sky.
*

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Posted by on in SageWoman Blogs
Lighting Winter Solstice Sympathetic Magic

I live well out in the rural hinterlands of Ireland. Folk memory is long lived and some traditional farming practices tend to border on folk magic. One such custom that can still be found is to put an predator's carcass on display to warn off other of its species not to prey on herd animals - sheep and chickens. I have known pine martin to be nailed up on chicken coops as a warning. Walking our dogs down our lane I saw a road kill fox draped over the pasture's fence post.  It's a form of sympathetic magic. And it is deep, deep in our cellular memory. Sympathetic magic is imitative magic or correspondences according to anthropologists. You don't have to be identified as pagan to practice it.

 

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Recent comment in this post - Show all comments
  • Solitarieone
    Solitarieone says #
    Thank you, Bee! For more than 40 years, I’ve wondered about that magic that I saw at my landlord’s farm. I was a military dependen

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