Art is the lie that enables us to realize the truth. – Pablo Picasso
The Winter Solstice has just passed. The night sky is filled with celestial drama, as Jupiter and Saturn align so closely they appear almost as a single star. Fluttering atop the cosmic wheel, the times of long darkness and short daylight are transforming moment by moment. The glorious stillness of Winter has arrived like a sentinel posted at the gate to infinity. In Taoism these are the days of maximum Yin energy. Yin is often called female, because it is easier to understand dichotomies – something is this or that: a one or a zero (binary); black or white; left or right. Yin and Yang are not opposites, but compliments. Together – they create balance.
Yesterday my wife sent me a message wishing me a happy DongZhi, which is the Chinese winter solstice holiday. The solstice is a time for celebration in many cultures around the world. In northern Europe the solstice is called “Mother’s Night” because the Norse goddess Frigga gave birth to her “young sun” symbolizing bringing light to the darkness. Mythology has been the driving force of human thought for hundreds of thousands of years. Stories are integral to our humanness. We thinking creatures stand apart from the animal kingdom. Deeply ingrained within the human spirit is the need to seek equilibrium.
Equilibrium – a state of rest or balance due to the equal action of opposing forces. equal balance between any powers, influences, etc. There are many reasons why our lives get out of balance: too much love, too much hate, pandemic, unemployment, sickness… You know the feeling when the pendulum has swung way too far towards darkness; you pray it will swing back towards the light. Every fiber of your being is dedicated to hope. It is in these times that we find Truth with a capital T. During these long dark nights, it is the truth that comes knocking.
Winter is the ideal time for creativity. I am certain all of you who read this are creative. You create each day, but you dismiss it as simply stuff you have to do. Plans are formed from intentions, and intentions grow from the clay of your psyche (governing spirit) Your spirit is born from your connection to the worlds around and within. Lurking deep within our subconscious are tens of thousands of myths, long forgotten, but these stories shaped the lives of our ancestors. In the long dark nights, tales told around the fire brought life into balance for the creatures whose greatest weapon was their mind. Following natural clues, armed with thousands of stories, our ancient kin brought us here. The metaphysical ashes of these winter’s tales provide nourishment during the dark nights of the soul.
Gather up the Yin energy flowing all around you. These days are fuel for the fires of the imagination that light the darkness. Bring greater meaning to your life The Earth is closest to the Sun at this time of year (January 2, 2021). The Sun is the fire warming all life. The energy of the stars courses through your veins. Celebrate the solstice. Remember what John Steinbeck said, What good is the warmth of summer, without the cold of winter to give it sweetness.