Winter Solstice – How Does the Darkness Serve?
the Birth of the Holy WILD ~ The Jewel in the Darkness…
Winter Solstice. The dark time of the year. The nadir of the Sun. Holy Womb of the Dark Goddess.
We are deepening into the Heart of the Darkness… which is why this time of year is so challenging. Even my hormones are impacted from less light. I feeeeeel melancholic, slightly depressed as a response. Nature is beckoning me into the deep. Pulling me down into myself, into my bed, into my sleep.
How does the Darkness serve?” I whisper, watching the sun set over the canyon walls…
The Ancients honored these feelings by creating altars to them, seeing melancholia as a visitation by a god to be communed with. Invited in. Listened to. Initiated by. Learned from. And… loved. Shadowed cloisters in muted colors. Sculptures of Persephone. Saturn.
Nowadays people drug these messengers. Or manically pursue happiness to escape. Anything but feel the darkness closing in. Or, if they do, completely identify with their depression and lose themselves in it.
And in that moment of the question, I feel an explosion of pain in my heart… (my heart has been aching for days) and I am instantly ripped back through the wretched experiences of my life…
How does the Darkness serve? In wildly agonizing and painfully exquisite ways. So much pathos in suffering! The Pieta. Such tremendous brilliance! Our greatest art has been fashioned from it… intoning our universal wounds. Our wisdom comes from it. In all the great world myths, suffering is an inevitable part of the initiation. It exists in every human’s life. And still, we avoid entering in…
…The violence in my childhood home. Runaway at 14. Pregnant at 15. A horribly physical and emotional scarring birth. Giving the baby up for adoption. Drugs. Jail. Deathly ill and alone in New York. Cast out of a spiritual community pregnant with my son. More births and extreme challenges of motherhood. Struggle with rage and mental health. Divorce. All came tumbling through at once, cracking me open to a torrent of tears.
I do not minimize suffering. I hold it with great, great love and care. Its agony is so great it carries people to the edge…. and some go over. It is not to be taken lightly. And, I have learned to value it. For the Jewel lies in the Darkness.
Weeping I watch the shadow force the light out on the ridge. The definition of that shadow darkening the landscape sweeps over me as the darkness has over my life. I feel the presence of my own definition… the force of my character shaped out of these depth encounters with agonizing suffering.
Each one’s Jewel is unique unto their life and wounds. Extracting it is the Art.
“Here, when the danger to his will is greatest, Art approaches as a saving sorceress, expert at healing. She alone knows how to turn these nauseous thoughts about the horror or absurdity of existence into notions with which one can live.” – Nietzsche
If we don’t choose to tend, love and know the Darkness… the deeper intelligence and beauty of our Holy WILD is left hidden away until we finally enter in to meet it.