Winter Solstice

This year solstice finally made sense to me.

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the rising sun.  i took this years ago when i was struggling with my newborn son who never slept.  talk about beginnings forged in fire…

We were invited to come together with our community in a beautiful, heart felt ceremony of renewal and human connection to nature.  For me, this was new year’s eve.

Our host had set up a table for the kids to craft lanterns, complete with battery powered tea lights, mod podge, brushes and colored tissue paper to paste onto jars, and wire to make a handle with.

IMG_0355There was also a beeswax candle making station were we rolled sheets of beeswax around a long wick, and a table with slips of paper for us to write down some things we want to shed or things we want to increase in the new year.  These words we wrapped in white linen along some herbs and tied with string to be tossed into the waiting bonfire.

What a beautiful thing to do for solstice!  It was inspiring, all the thought that went into this evening.

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When all the writing and pasting was done and every hand held a candle, we went out to the bonfire around which (you can see this in the pic above) a spiral path toward the fire was made with pine boughs.

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The kids lined up first (little ones had parents to help them) and after our host shared a beautiful poem about making peace with the darkness as well as the light in all of us, we all walked the spiral inward toward the fire and put our small linen bag of thoughts and herbs into the fire.

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I love this symbolism of letting go, turning hopes into smoke that rises upward  into the universe and burning up the heavy burdens we had carried from last year.

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We lit our beeswax candle from this common flame and when everyone was ready we stood together as a community and it was lovely.

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3 thoughts on “Winter Solstice

  1. I have been waiting patiently for ‘a post from ravyn’… checking every week or so. Thanks for making my day. Warm thoughts, and kindness coming your way. happy new year. alison

  2. Dear beautiful Mom, hello,
    I felt on your blog some our ago. I was surching some images of Beit Lehem… What a coincidence! And since then, I couldn’t stop reading all. It was so passionating!
    I wanted so much to go to Ramallah also some months ago but I didm’t manage so I was really so curious to see all the images of everyday life, the landscape, and all the rest!!
    I’m Yanira, I’m a filmmaker, 37 years old, born in Israel, grew up in France, and I lived the last years between France and Italy… To say it quick, my father is jew, my mother is not. We didn’t receive any religious education. My parents arrived in Israel in 74 from Romania. My mother has russian origins. My father has german/polish/spanish origins. I born in 76 and left Israel with my mom in 86, to Paris…
    Actually, I was in Israel/Palestine this summer, during the massacre of gaza population by the israeli army. I was just coming to see my father that I didn’t see for nearly 8 ears, 8 years I haven’t been in my country neither…and then started the new tragedy…
    Hopefuly, I met some people who quickly became my friends in Tel-Aviv that are the very leftists side of the israeli society. We were all trying to go to manifestations, trying to share real informations with the rest of the society but as you know, fascism and brain-washing is closing most dialogs in their country… So we felt all very useless. But talking together, moving as much that we can to the territories, helping somehow, trying nevertheless to think new actions was helping us to live those terribly painful moments. Some of my israeli friends have friends in Gaza and were really struggling not to be able to do anything. Even the money they sent once, was near to create other damages, phone calls also started to make problems… of course it was a very confused moment…
    So, I was very interested to read your stories of new life in Ramallah, your new home, and also about your experience of mother. Actually I also do yoga since many years and it also changed my life. I would also love being a mother myself and see my children grow as you do, but I didn’t fall in love those last years… life sometimes prepares something else for us… i suppose it’s also because I was travelling a lot and working to much on making my last film (A long feature that has been filmed in Italy with transgender people, women and a man, a “mise en scène” of 3 myths of Ovide’s Metamorphoses. It has just been shown at the festival of Locarno, when I came back from Israel/Palestine, after 2 months that I passed there). You might be be interested to see it as I read your opinions about genders…

    Now I’m back in Paris but I think about coming to Israel/Palestine for some months or more soon. I would like to work on a new film project. For this I need to learn to speak arab because I want to communicate with people in their own language and also learn more about palestinian culture and for me, a lot of a culture, the history of people passes threw the language. I would also like to come and live in Ramallah for a while. I’ll be glad to tell you more about the project if you want. And maybe to meet you there. I already have a person I will meet there. He’s a teacher of english, his parents are living in Amman but he’s in Ramallah. We just know from facebook because he’s a friend of Saleh Bakri I met in a manifestation this summer in Yafa. As I have an israeli passport it’s a bit tricky to come but nothing compared to what palestinian people must endure to travel anywhere…
    By the way, it’s funny cause this winter, I did something near to the ritual you did, in Paris, with my friends who are part of the Iranian community here in Paris. But it was in march or april if I remember well…it’s the persian new year, and we were all jumping on fire to say good bye to the old year and welcome the new one, get rid of “the yellow” and “welcome the red” (colors of the fire, also very symbolic…)
    Dear, I would be happy to know more about your life there and maybe start a real communication with you. I find in my own story so many common points with you, that I feel you somehow story very close to me.
    I also hope you’re feeling better now and that you’ll soon write again.
    Hope to read you soon on my email or here, as you want.

    ps: sorry so much for my terrible english…(french schools are not the best for that 😦

    Yanira

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