Solstice Reflections 2011 is an online gathering of reflections by seven lovely women on the spirit of winter and the migration from darkness to light. My hope is that they may offer you a momentary respite from a sometimes hectic season, allowing you to sit with your own reflections as you enter your personal winter. Click here for all posts to date.
What is it about darkness and diminishment that’s profoundly hard for me? Like so many people in our culture I want it always to be getting better and better and for the sky to be blue forever. I resist loss, I resist darkness, both literal and figurative. I fight it all the time, with a smile on my face and an act that I’m not pushing anything away. I like to think I’m very Zen and totally cool with the great cycles of life, but deep inside, in a place I’m hardly conscious of, I’m dancing as fast as I can to keep it all sunshine and roses.
For me, autumn is a great invitation to learn from my teachers, the trees. It’s a beautiful opportunity to surrender, to let the act go. And maybe I’m making some progress. I used to dread fall, I used to hate the winter landscape, thinking it looked like everything was dead. Maybe it’s age, maybe it’s paying attention, maybe it’s just admitting that that’s how I saw everything, but I’m starting to get this dormant thing, this fallow thing. There’s almost a relief now when the trees drop their leaves, like I can start releasing things from my life, too. I can let go of things that no longer serve me. And that I can not know what will happen next. That I can just rest in the source and wait.
And the lovely thing is that with or without my faith in it, the days do stop getting shorter, the pendulum swings and every day there’s a little more light, until, of course, there isn’t.
Liz Coleman lives in the Tennessee countryside with her sweet hubby and flocks of songbirds.
(Note from Steph: You can find Liz and read more of her writings on her blog, Enjoy and Love.)