Sundays are Spirituality Day here at Taking it to the Streets
The days are darkening – nights get longer, days get shorter. Here in the Northern Hemisphere where I live the temperature is dropping. Like my Celtic ancestors, lighting fires for Samhain, Winter Solstice and Candlemas – amidst the darkened nights – we light up our streets with bright holiday lights “to chase the cold winter away”. And – for many people (at least in America) this is a season of frenzied activity – shopping, parties, family get-togethers, and yes, more and more shopping.
I like to put things into perspective – to take a bit of a longer view.
The encroaching darkness must have felt threatening to our ancestors. Huddling together, seeking both warmth and companionship as the dark and cold rolled in, makes sense to me.
But even not-so-long-ago ancestors – rural Americans before the Rural Electrification Act in 1936, for instance – followed the lead that nature gave them. Up with the sun and out to work, in (and soon to bed) when it set. Thus summer became a time of frenetic activity, winter a time of reflection.
Kind of like the Sabbath used to be (and for GREAT reflections on what that meant and how to get it back in your life, read Sabbath by Wayne Muller). A time to turn away from the busy world and turn to the REAL world within.
We’ve lost that. I think we’ve particularly lost the sacredness, and quietness of winter.
I haven’t been here (at my blog) for quite some time – not even to compulsively check my stats :). The part of me that loves to achieve, loves to communicate, loves doing has some opinions on my absence (the word ‘lazy’ has come up in some inner dialogues).
My contract IT job just ended on Saturday – a natural ending and in this era of globalization/serfdom (ie., contract work) part of the cycle of things. I think the combination of the shortening days since fall equinox and the ending/death of both our ensuing winter and this job ending have sent me within.
I’d love to tell you that I’ve been meditating this whole time, but my inner workings have been worked out in less lofty ways.
Now that I have recognized what’s been going on (ah! it’s that time of the year – time to nourish my inner life) I plan to address that need more consciously. Meditation, yes, maybe take a yoga class while I’m off work, more time in nature.
How about you? How do you feel about our connection to the seasons? to the concept of Sabbath or of winter as a ‘going within’ time? And how do you meet those needs in a frenetic world? As always, I really want to know!