photos via A Cup of Jo*
Happy winter solstice, Veggies! Two years ago, my good friend Sara had a winter solstice party at her home. She explained the custom and its history in a wonderfully heart warming, life affirming way. I will not be able to replicate that. Instead, I will sum it up for you using a quote that I learned from my god...the god of musical theatre:
"In Ancient days…in winter…when the sun started to sink lower in the sky…man started to wonder if he would die. 'Look,' he said. 'The day is being eaten by the night.' 'Look,' he said. 'The darkness is devouring the light.' And he was frightened."**
Basically, it got dark and everyone bugged the hizzle out. Then they ate and drank and hugged each other and sang songs and danced and prayed and partied like it was the end of the world as they knew it and they felt fine. Then a miraculous thing happened! The sun came back and the days got longer and there was more food and more drink and more babies and everyone continued on this wacky road called life, grateful to have lived to dance another day. Then they did it all again the next year. You see, ancient man/women never believed that they were entitled to the sun. There was an understanding that while they were blessed with its favor, the sun was not theirs to harness. The sun was theirs on generous loan, never to be taken for granted.
In present day USA, it is very easy to lose the connection to the magic that is winter solstice. We don't harvest in the same way. We don't rely on the sun in the same way. We sit in our artificially lit apartments and microwave a hot pocket and wonder why our internet connection is so slow. Oh, silly humans. How we have tricked ourselves into believing that we are in control. Don't get it twisted, friends. We may think that we run this show, but we are mere renters of our space on this planet and, as my friend Tommy once said, Mother Earth could shake us off like "a bunch of unwanted fleas" if she wanted to. So today, as the darkness devours the light, raise your glass and bow your head out of respect for great lady Earth. Thank her for her hospitality. Be ever grateful for this beautiful, gift of a planet and vow to keep her safe from harm. And for the love of Buddha, recycle already!!!
*Seriously, how gorgeous are these photos from Cup of Jo??? My blog crush on her grows stronger by the day.
**Quote from the 1969 musical Celebration. Big thanks to my dear friend Vera for reminding me which musical it came from!!