Winter Solstice: A moment to reflect
Tomorrow, December 21st, will be the longest night of the year, at least for the Northern hemisphere. For 3 days in a row, the sun will be at its lowest, at a standstill, and after December 24th, it will start rising again with the days becoming longer. Just like nature does, it is the perfect timing for us to reflect, to go inward and think not only about what the last 6 months have brought us, but also to envision what we want to put into the future, what our intentions are and how we want to get there.
It is an old tradition to burn wood, light candles, celebrate 'Juul', the return of the sun, during this time of the year, and pay attention to our inner world, peace, healing & rebirth, and what it means to surrender. In fact, we could look at it as 'strategic thinking' sessions, while connecting to our inner wisdom, our intuition, while listening to what comes to us form our core.
Where do we start?
First of all we should ask ourselves a few highly reflective questions about both the past and the upcoming 12 months. A few basics to outline for yourself, in order to go deeper inward during the 13 nights between December 24th and January 6th.
A few questions you could ask yourself already are:
- What happened during the last year: the good and the bad?
- How have you dealt with it?
- What have you learned from it?
- What did or do you find difficult?
- How do you envision the upcoming year?
- What are your wishes for yourself and others?
- What would you like to put into the world?
- What will the next year be about for you personally?
It is a co-creative process amplified by aligning yourself with nature
The practice of what is called 'The 13 Holy Nights', goes deeper than quickly writing down your list with New Year's resolutions. It is planting the seeds of your dreams during the most powerful time of the year, to re-connect, receive, restore and co-create. All this, while already putting our action-points out there: the things you want to do, the activities and practices you want to develop or strengthen during the next year; envisioning connection with the people you would love to have in your life; engaging with the world from a place of love and joy. You will be creating an energetic imprint, which will make it easier for you to surrender and take aligned action, because saying YES to 'surrendering' means 'to take action'; it does not mean 'to give in or give up', but to let yourself being guided by the wisdom that lies within you, without letting your ego take over the steering wheel.
Nature is extraordinary, beyond our comprehension and by aligning ourselves with that natural design and intelligence we discover our own human potential and resilience.
The practice itself
Each day of the 13 Holy Nights corresponds to a month in the coming year, except for the first 24-hour period which symbolises the direction of your entire year.
We start on Christmas Eve where you will light your first candle of the 13, if you wish to light candles. You also may use oracle cards if you have them, though journaling and being aware will be the biggest part of the practice.
Every day you are invited to reflect on a specific theme that you want to tackle. Write down any significant thoughts and events that occur. Also, the people who you encounter (see, talk to on the phone or internet, or even just think about) during this time will be significant for you this upcoming year. This is also the foundation of the tradition of sending Christmas cards to people who we would like to keep in our lives.
It is very important to write down your dreams. Keep a journal by your bedside and write down everything you think about when you wake up and/or try to fall asleep.
The first Holy Night ends during the late afternoon of December 25th. The second one will start at sunset December 25th and all thoughts, ideas, visions, dreams that you receive will symbolise the month of January 2021. The third night will symbolise February 2021 and so on.
Here are some theme's you might want to connect with:
- Open-mindedness and wonder
- Your own essence
- Your inner wisdom
- Authenticity and the courage to be yourself
- Determination and standing firmly
- Freedom and the responsibility that comes with it
- Recognising your true needs and intentions
- Seeing the bigger picture between you and the whole
- Love and compassion
- Self-development and connection with your inner core
I wish you a lot of joy, inner connection, loving silence and bold inspiration. Let this be a time of love, warmth, reflection and connection! Prepare and set yourself for a fantastic 2021!
Happy Holidays & Warm Wishes,