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Winter Solstice

December 18, 2010

Around this time of the year our natural world experiences a cyclic energetic shift: the Winter Solstice: darkness giving way to light. During these days you may observe that Nature feels silent as if awaiting the shift….

Would you like to take a deep breath now?….How are you feeling today?

If we pay attention to life during Winter, we will observe that “all things in Nature wither, return home, hide and enter a resting period. This is a time when Yin dominates Yang. Therefore Chinese Medicine suggests that we be mindful on how we use our Yang ( or “go-go) energy” . To harmonize with the season we may want to emphasize the Yin aspects of our body and mind: we allow ourselves to be more receptive, introspective and storage oriented.
Warm, hearty soups, whole grains and roasted nuts sound good on cold days. Dried foods, small dark beans, seaweeds and steamed winter greens fortify the Kidneys (the organ that corresponds to winter time according to Chinese Medicine). You may want to cook foods longer, at lower temperatures and with less water. Thich Nhat Hanh’s wise teachings recommend us to eat mindfully. Here is one out of many of the beautiful verses that we can “digest” as we eat: “In this food I see clearly the presence of the entire Universe supporting my existence” .

During this shift in Nature’s metabolism, fresh energies are issued forth which we can use to help us prepare for the upcoming cycle and for physical and spiritual renewal. The Renewal Ceremony is a supportive practice to do at this time in front of your shrine or facing the early morning sun out in nature. It can help refresh and refocus your direction.
You can also use the ceremonial Yule Log as a metaphor for the new light coming forth into the next cycle. It’s always a very simple yet deep way to re connect with the light inside!

To your Wisdom!

~Yamin

 

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