You CAN See In The Dark with Solstice Empowerment

December 21, 2009 by  

Honoring the Coming Light

Honoring the Coming Light

December 21st is the shortest day of the year.

It’s a day filled with hours and hours of darkness when the sun sets around 4:00 p.m. It’s also the turning point for when the days begin to get longer. It marks the return of the Light.

December 21st is known as the Earth holiday called Solstice.

I’ve always dreaded the long, dark Chicago winters.

They make me sad, depressed, isolated and very stressed. The absence of light deeply impacts my mood. I have to work hard to muster up courage and hope when the days are void of sun, warmth and light. Without the sun, I feel listless, cold inside and out, and often despairing.

I really don’t want another winter where I feel drained and spent of all my inner glow–and, with it, of all my vigor.

This winter I want to create a change. I want to see this season through luminous eyes instead of sad ones.  I want to do something highly empowering to remind me of the inner Light that is available to me everyday–even on the shortest day of the year when we can expect about 15 hours of darkness to blanket us.  So, to honor this new way of experiencing a long dark winter, I decided to make a Solstice candle altar.

I’ve never recognized Solstice as a spiritual Holiday before but today I’ve decided to make December 21st emotionally meaningful as well as memorable.  My candle altar to Solstice will be a daily reminder of the coming Light.

Reflecting the Warmth of the Sun

Reflecting the Warmth of the Sun

Life is abundant even in the dead of winter

Life is abundant even in the dead of winter

To get started, I chose candles the color of the sun–orange, yellow and red–to remind me of its warmth and the longer days ahead it would be bringing.

Adding various winter evergreens remind me that even in the dead of winter there is still so much life to be lived.

I also added some pinecones, which I call wooden flowers, to remind me that blosssoming and unfolding is still possible in the dark.

And, finally, I put some acorns on the altar to help me continually be aware of the knowledge and new skill set I was developing for myself about how to approach long, dark winters.


Step by step, as the altar started coming together, I could feel my energy changing.

I was emboldened, satisfied, and excited. I thought about what I would do each evening this winter to keep myself lit up, so to speak. For sure, I would light the altar, but I also began preparing a mental list of New Year’s intentions.

Empowerment in the Dark

Empowerment in the Dark

Creating this simple candle altar was truly an empowering experience. I must admit I surprised myself with how good it felt, having never done this sort of activity before. As I watch the flickering candles glow, I’m calm yet excited, hopeful and feeling sheer pleasure with what I’ve created.  I know this simple candle altar–and its symbolsim–is going to help me with my inner journey out of wintry melancholy.  It feels very good to do something assistive on behalf of my on-going transformation. That realization is, in and of itself, also a hallmark of empowerment. As the flames dance before me, I find myself thinking “…you really CAN see in the dark…”

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