An Invitation to a Winter Solstice Event Especially for the Befriending Our Shadow Alumni Community:
The winter solstice is a perfect opportunity to celebrate and acknowledge all the deep work you have all been doing in the Befriending Our Shadow class. This celebration will be a time to turn inward, to connect with your shadow dolls and to spend some time drinking in the nourishment from this most sacred time of the year. This has been a particularly challenging year for many of us and this celebration is a time of pause, of joining in with the in-breath of the earth that happens at the time of the turning from dark to light that is the winter solstice in the Northern hemisphere.
Here are some details about the event, which is evolving, and which I hope will also include your input. I have already been asked to include a guided meditation with a focus on developing intution and would love to hear what else you might need or want.
What: A celebration of the coming of the light and acknowledgement of the deep work you have all been doing Where: on Zoom, see invitation below When: Monday, December 21st, 7 PM to 8:30 PM EST How: Just come as you are. But it would be great if you would bring your doll with you. More details about the how below...
details from Erika's Living Earth shadow flip doll, "Healing Dark" side
The Celebration will include:
First, acknowledgement of the integration of your shadow parts (from the Befriending Our Shadow class) within the protective sphere of the healing dark. Take time to center yourselves in the healing darkness of the solstice, recognizing the origin of this ceremony as having to do with the (re-)birthing of the sun. Take time to meditate on your roots, the ways in which you are deeply connected to the earth and to your own bodies. Consider this gestating stage of the birthing process and what seeds you are harboring at this time for yourselves as a result of this deep work you have done.
Bringing in the light. We will light a candle or candles to celebrate the turning of the earth towards light at this darkest day of the year. Again, you don't have to light your own candle but if you do, it might make this more meaningful for you.
Setting an intention related to what you are birthing at this time of the great turning.
Blessing of the shadow dolls
Meditation, including a guided meditation
Group share of your experience and of blessings for each other
EXTRA: I am going to bless and then plant a bulb as a symbolic representation of the seeds I am nurturing for the future. I will bring the bulb to the celebration and plant it right afterwards. You are welcome to stay and plant a bulb of your own.
Things to Bring if you Want to Make this Celebration more Meaningful:
a candle or several candles to light. Set out small candles, such as tea lights in a circle, and in the center put a larger white or beeswax candle.
something to write with and something to write in, such as a journal
a bulb and a small pot of earth to plant it in
an altar, you may already have one or you may want to create one. Here is a resource about creating altars.
Some History related to the Lighting of Candles at Advent or the Winter Solstice:
This ceremony is possibly the most familiar to Christians, since many denominations practice Advent ceremonies for Christmas, both in the home, and at church. But there are perhaps as many ways to celebrate this as there are family traditions. It is completely up to you! For instance, it can work beautifully for Pagans and Earth-based religions, counting down to Solstice by calling in the four Elements, or Directions, and then Center. Or you may wish for each candle to represent a beloved Goddess and/or God. Several Buddhists, too, have told me they observe this practice each year, especially those who are in families of mixed faiths. They may light a candle each week to honor the The Five Skandhas; or perhaps the Four Noble Truths, with the final candle representing liberation. Hindus might wish to choose sacred elements of the Vedanta for each candle. Muslim participants could have the candles signify the Five Pillars of Islam. Jews can imbue each candle to represent the five books of the Torah — Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy. Non-religious attributions can center on what you may feel are the five most important qualities for a worthwhile life, or your favorite philosophical values. One family I am fond of has used the candles to represent the “Five Agreements,” by Don Miguel Ruiz.
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