Beliefnet
The Queen of My Self

Congratulations to the winners of The Queen of My Self T-shirts:
Lorna Lee, MI
Shari Glantz, OR
Michelle Spitzer-Boyd, MA
Jeannette Prior, UT
Phyllis Gabriel, CT

Wear them in pride!

This week’s theme is the Winter Solstice and all the multicultural goddesses and festivals associated with the return of the light.

 
The week leading up to the Winter Solstice is the darkest of the year. True, the week following the solstice is just as dark, but the energy is different. After the solstice, the dark gets a tiny bit lighter each day as the world as we know it on the Northern Hemisphere turns toward spring. But now, pre-solstice, we are spinning further and further into the dark.

Come the fall, there is no denying the apparent disappearance of the sun. It is most definitely getting darker and darker. And the rays of light are becoming ever more indirect. They skim by overhead at an almost horizontal angle, their energy and warmth barely reaching us below. Their glow is weak and wan, a diluted wash. Insipid. Depressing. All season long, the sun continues on its wayward course, slithering ever further south. Further and further away from us. Until we are left standing here in the dark.

The Winter Solstice is as dark as it gets. The sun is at its nadir, the furthest southern limit of its range, its terminus. And there it seems to want to stay for a while. At the solstice, the sun rises and sets at the identical time day after day. The length of the daylight hours remains the same. The sun is standing absolutely still. It has stopped retreating, and yet hasn’t begun to come back. Solstice in Latin, means just that — the sun stands still. For three days it remains motionless, riveted. Pausing, it hovers in pregnant hesitation before it gets back on track again, resting before it begins its annual return trip across the equator into the Northern Hemisphere for its homecoming. Back to us waiting here hoping.

But in the meantime it’s damn dark out there. Dim and drab.The days have shriveled to a skeleton flicker of light. The frozen nights are endless. These are dim, drab times. No flowers, no foliage. No insects, few birds. No animals out and about. The Earth Herself is congealed with cold. Dark death and Arctic gloom surrounds us. How do we know that the sun, too, won’t die, its flame of life extinguished forever? How do we know that it won’t just go off and leave us, abandon us to the long frigid night?

Wrapped in the dark womb of the weather, it is not difficult to imagine the terrifying prospect of the permanent demise of the sun and the consequent loss of light, the loss of heat. The loss of life. Without the comfort of the familiar cyclical pattern, the approach of each winter with its attendant chiaroscuro would be agonizing. The tension intensified by the chill.

With the death of the sun, the world would be cast back to the state that it occupied before creation, the classical concept of chaos. The black void. The Great Uterine Darkness. It is from this elemental ether that the old creatrix goddesses are said to have brought forth all that is. This sacred spark of creative potential that is contained within the primordial womb is one of humanity’s oldest concepts — the solar son reborn each year from the Great Mother.
 
Though my soul may set in darkness,
It will rise in perfect light,
I have loved the stars too fondly
To be fearful of the night.
– Sarah Williams

***
If you are in the New York City area, please join me to welcome back the sun tomorrow.

DECEMBER 21
Tuesday, 6:00 PM

35th ANNIVERSARY WINTER SOULSTICE CELEBRATION
With MAMA DONNA HENES AND FRIENDS

REVERENCE TO HER: KEEPING THE SPIRIT FIRES BURNING
This solstice is an especially Celestially Auspicious Occasion,
as it is also the New Cold Moon and a total Lunar Eclipse!
A family friendly event — kids welcome.
Please bring candles in glass holders,
drums/percussion instruments.
 
Rain or Shine!
Grand Army Plaza, Park Slope
Exotic Brooklyn, NY
718-857-1343
Free

***
The Queen welcomes questions concerning all issues of interest to women in their mature years. Send your inquiries to thequeenofmyself@aol.com.

CONSULT THE MIDLIFE MIDWIFE™
Queen Mama Donna offers upbeat, practical and ceremonial guidance for individual women and groups who want to enjoy the fruits of an enriching, influential, purposeful, passionate, and powerful maturity.

Join the Discussion
comments powered by Disqus