Happy Solstice everyone! In just a few hours the Sun and Moon will conjoin right as the Sun enters Capricorn. A cardinal earth sign, making the start of winter and the beginning of the return of the light. In just two days from now Saturn will also enter Sagittarius.
Ever since I was a little boy I’ve loved candles. I’ve kept candles burning, or some form of golden, orange, yellow, and red lights near me, where I work and where I live, each day for many years. In fact, when I started the Nightlight astrology school, the reason I chose the name came from my love of candles and warm lights in the night. To me the symbol speaks for itself and needs no elaborate interpretation. “Stick with the image” as they say. And yet speaking around images does the same things candles do. Yellow white and gold black speak to the quiet in each of us, the flickering eyes beholding and the absent blacks of the pupils. The empty chairs of starry students and the algebra of nighttime fires in the sky. Simple questions and fickle awareness, rising over deep valleys of hot wax. Interpretations and flaming irises, framing and placing the soft cosmos beyond. The bigger the light the more the darkness illuminates: suddenly a flutter and then settling. Now back to white-orange light against shadows and sleep.
It’s true that the solstice gives us reason to celebrate. For another year lived, for another year learned, and for a new year to come. And yet the simple image of the winter solstice, without the past or the future involved, after the toasts have cleared and the wine glasses dried, is the image of a warm light, small, and enough, in the deepest dark. Not about the promise of what that means or what will come of it, no resurrection song…just the candle, here now in the long night.
Prayer: Darkest time of year, smallest light. Thank you.
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Image by courtesy of Vanderlaan, at creative commons image licensing.