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Advent Blessings

Advent Blessings

Now the twilight of the year

Comes, and Christmas draweth near.

See, across the Advent sky

How the clouds move slowly by.

Earth is waiting, wrapped in sleep,

Waiting in a slumber deep.

Waiting for the Christmas birth,

The birth that blesses Heaven and Earth.

            As I walked on my favorite river trail this morning, the skies were gray and promising to bring rain soon. The salmon were running in the rivers, their silver tales flashing through the waters. Their spawning would be followed by their natural death, which would in turn bring food to the gulls and the vultures waiting on the shore and in the trees. And in the spring, the salmon eggs will hatch, and the river will be filled with fingerlings.

            Now, in the dark and dead part of the year, the seeds of new life are being laid into the earth. All the kingdoms of nature take part in the dying and the birth, as the earth inhales her life forces and wraps herself in blankets of leaves and drifts of snow.

            And even as the outer world is getting ready for the madness of pre-holiday shopping and feasting, another sacred festival is being prepared. The mid-winter festival is a festival of communion for the universe and the earth. The sacrament of birth is celebrated every year anew, in the humble place of the manger, in the listening human heart, in the deep center of the earth .

            The four weeks preceding Christmas are called Advent, meaning “Coming towards.” The great Sun-Spirit of the Macrocosm “comes towards” the earth every Christmas, to be born in the Microcosm of the earth, in the microcosmic heart of the human being. And just as a mother must wait through a pregnancy until she gives gift to her child, so we must wait through the season of Advent as a kind of world-pregnancy. This is a season of waiting and envisioning, a season to prepare ourselves to connect with the spirit who wills to connect with the earth.

            And in the four weeks of Advent, the four kingdoms of Nature are each blessed, one by one, as the earth inhales, the seeds are laid beneath the ground, and the Spirit draws near, approaching from the heights of heaven to the depths of earth.

            This, the first week of Advent is sacred to the kingdom of the minerals. These form the foundation of all our life, forming the bedrock of the planet, the scaffolding and skeleton for our existence.

            In this first week, as we learn to cultivate our inner quiet, we can take time to give thanks and gratitude to the mineral kingdom. We can honor the selfless strength of the rocks, stones, crystals, bones, seashells and more: to the light and wisdom of their shape and form.

 

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The first light of Advent,

It is the light of stones,

Light that dwells in seashells,

In crystals and in bone.

            Many people choose to create a quiet ritual for Advent season, by preparing a table with four candles to notate the four weeks of Advent. In the first week, one single candle is lit daily to signify the mineral kingdom. In the second week, a second candle is also lit, for the plant kingdom; in the third week, a third is lit for the animal kingdom; and in the fourth week, a fourth is lit for the human kingdom.

            This simple ritual prepares us then for the darkness of the midnight hour, Christmas Eve, when those who understand the esoteric nature of Christmas listen at the midnight hour for the sacred marriage of heaven and earth. At Christmas, the cosmic spirit of the heights enters into the non-physical space of the human heart.

     In the deep darkness of a winter night, in the dark of the cave where the child is born, the mystery of birth will be celebrated. Christmas is the season to celebrate the birth of light in the darkness, the birth of spirit being in the darkness of matter.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 





Winter Solstice 2015

Winter Solstice

The Sun at the Midnight Hour

            Winter Solstice marks the turning point of the year.

            The earth has reached its deepest angle of inclination, and will begin to turn itself again.

            Or, in other words, the sun is now at its deepest point in the sky (for us in the northern latitudes). The night has reached its climax: the earth is dark and cold, and seemingly cut off from the sun.

            If we lived in the furthest northern regions, perhaps without even the comforts of electricity and indoor heating, we would know the fear of the winter months. Without the certainty that the sun will ever return, we would know the challenge of living in the dark, with only our faith to assure us that we have food, fuel and warmth enough to last through the winter months.

            The spiritual teachers of ancient cultures, priests and priestesses alike, acted as guardians of the wisdom of the seasons. They were responsible for marking the two solstices and two equinoxes through ceremonies and monuments. It was who erected the massive stone monuments in alignment with the declination of the sun to mark these four turning points.

            The ceremonies that were held at each season were appropriate to the lesson that each had to offer.

            The mystery of midwinter was called “learning to behold the Sun at the Midnight Hour.”

            We know from the Celtic mysteries that on the long night of the solstice, the teachers and their students entered into caves or hollows. Through their spiritual understanding, they confronted their fear of darkness and abandonment. They knew that when the earth is at its darkness, we have a unique opportunity to turn our attention away from the sense world. They knew that the solstice is the best time to perceive the Creative Forces that lie behind all sense phenomena. They used the experience of the solstice shadows to seek and find the sources of world creation as a spiritual light that shines in the darkness. This is called “Finding the Sun at the midnight hour.”

            All spiritual realities have multiple levels of meanings. The solstice shows us one aspect of the Midnight Hour, but we can find this on myriad other levels as well. And all of them point ultimately to the Midnight Hour when the Christmas Child was born in the manger in the darkest hours of world evolution.

            The midnight hour happens each night when we go to sleep. At the deepest point of each night, we are moving through the highest spiritual realties. Those who have attained the ability to perceive the source of their own I-Am as the Cosmic I-Am will be awake even at night. There they behold the Sun at the Midnight Hour.

            On an ever grander scale, the midnight hour also happens for us between each of our lifetimes. As we journey away from the earth after each life, we move back into spiritual realms. At last we reach draw near to the loftiest spiritual beings, to the Creative Word. Before the majesty of these beings, our personal consciousness is dimmed, almost to the point of unconsciousness. Those who can sustain awareness of self even in the field of universal spirit mind will find that they are able to do so only when they can awaken in themselves the awareness of the Cosmic I-Am spirit. This spirit is the spirit that shines as the Sun at the Midnight Hour. This is the same Sun that the initiates seek at the midwinter solstice.

            All these mysteries point to the grandest mystery of all, the birth of the Cosmic I-Am on Earth, at the Turning Point of Time.

            Our human nature was originally one with the earth spirit, born out of the Creative Worlds. As we grew in perfection, the Creator Gods set us free, and the earth became material. As far as we know, ours is the most advanced, the most complex, and also the most bereft condition in the universe.

            Only a few millennia ago, our Earth condition reached a point of deepest darkness.

            From the perspective of the spiritual world, the earth had slipped into a condition of pure darkness.

            The earth existed in a condition of permanent midnight.

            At this Cosmic Midnight Hour, the World Creator freely chose to enter into this world of matter. S/He became a Sun on Earth, became light within the darkness.

            Herein lies the real meaning of learning to behold the Sun at the Midnight Hour. If we seek and find the World Creator on the earth, we can experience that S/He shines on the earth as divine consciousness even as S/He shines in our consciousness as the essential I-Am that we are.

            In times past, we could find our Creator in the Heavens above.

            Now we find the Creator even here, in the world of the senses, and here in the core of our own heart and mind.

            The yearly festival of the solstice marks the point when the darkness again turns towards the light.

            What better season to celebrate the birth of the child, who would grow to be the bearer of the Spirit Light of the World, here on the earth?

            This is the true meaning of the Turning Point of Time.

 

Advent 2015


Advent Blessings
Now the twilight of the year
Comes, and Christmas draweth near.
See, across the Advent sky
How the clouds move slowly by.
Earth is waiting, wrapped in sleep,
Waiting in a slumber deep.
Waiting for the Christmas birth,
The birth that blesses Heaven and Earth.
 
In this beautiful dark season of the year, the seeds of new life are being laid into the earth. All the kingdoms of nature take part in the dying and the birth, as the earth inhales her life forces and wraps herself in blankets of leaves and drifts of snow.
And even as the outer world marks the season with the madness of pre-holiday shopping and feasting, another sacred festival is being prepared. The mid-winter festival is a festival of communion for the universe and the earth. The sacrament of birth is celebrated every year anew, in the humble place of the manger, in the listening human heart, in the deep center of the earth .
The four weeks preceding Christmas are called Advent, meaning “Coming towards.” The great Sun-Spirit of the Macrocosm “comes towards” the earth every Christmas, to be born in the Microcosm of the earth, in the microcosmic heart of the human being. And just as a mother must wait through a pregnancy until she gives gift to her child, so we must wait through the season of Advent as a kind of world-pregnancy. This is a season of waiting and envisioning, a season to prepare ourselves to connect with the spirit who wills to In the four weeks of Advent, the four kingdoms of Nature are each blessed, one by one, as the earth inhales, the seeds are laid beneath the ground, and the Spirit draws near, approaching from the heights of heaven to the depths of earth.
Many people choose to create a quiet ritual for Advent season, by preparing a table with four candles to notate the four weeks of Advent. In the first week, one single candle is lit daily to signify the mineral kingdom. In the second week, a second candle is also lit, for the plant kingdom; in the third week, a third is lit for the animal kingdom; and in the fourth week, a fourth is lit for the human kingdom.
This simple ritual prepares us then for the darkness of the midnight hour, Christmas Eve, when those who understand the esoteric nature of Christmas listen at the midnight hour for the sacred marriage of heaven and earth. At Christmas, the cosmic spirit of the heights enters into the non-physical space of the human heart.
In the deep darkness of a winter night, in the dark of the cave where the child is born, the mystery of birth will be celebrated. Christmas is the season to celebrate the birth of light in the darkness, the birth of spirit being in the darkness of matter.
 
 
 
In this winter season, meditate on the sound “B,” the sound of Birth, Boundaries and Blessings. Picture the heavenly Madonna, the Mother-Soul of the Universe, pulling a cloak of stars around herself. So is the earth held in the love of the world: so does our Guardian Angel hold us near: so do we humans hold our infants in joyful protection.
Picture yourself clothed in radiant yellow, wearing a star-cloak of midnight blue with a deep red lining. Reach back, and pull this cloak around yourself, as Madonna, as angel, and parent. Inside your cloak or protection, your sun-yellow soul shines bright, and your red lining protects you and gives you the strength you need.
You may hold this meditation as a pure mental imagination, if you like. Far more beautiful is it to move it in eurythmy as a short daily practice, grounding your spiritual quest into a body practice.

Advent Blessings

Advent Blessings

Now the twilight of the year
Comes, and Christmas draweth near.
See, across the Advent sky
How the clouds move slowly by.
Earth is waiting, wrapped in sleep,
Waiting in a slumber deep.
Waiting for the Christmas birth,
The birth that blesses Heaven and Earth.

 As I walked on my favorite river trail this morning, the skies were gray and promising to bring rain soon. The salmon were running in the rivers, their silver tales flashing through the waters. Their spawning would be followed by their natural death, which would in turn bring food to the gulls and the vultures waiting on the shore and in the trees. And in the spring, the salmon eggs will hatch, and the river will be filled with fingerlings.

Now, in the dark and dead part of the year, the seeds of new life are being laid into the earth. All the kingdoms of nature take part in the dying and the birth, as the earth inhales her life forces and wraps herself in blankets of leaves and drifts of snow.

And even as the outer world is getting ready for the madness of pre-holiday shopping and feasting, another sacred festival is being prepared. The mid-winter festival is a festival of communion for the universe and the earth. The sacrament of birth is celebrated every year anew, in the humble place of the manger, in the listening human heart, in the deep center of the earth .

The four weeks preceding Christmas are called Advent, meaning “Coming towards.” The great Sun-Spirit of the Macrocosm “comes towards” the earth every Christmas, to be born in the Microcosm of the earth, in the microcosmic heart of the human being. And just as a mother must wait through a pregnancy until she gives gift to her child, so we must wait through the season of Advent as a kind of world-pregnancy. This is a season of waiting and envisioning, a season to prepare ourselves to connect with the spirit who wills to connect with the earth.

And in the four weeks of Advent, the four kingdoms of Nature are each blessed, one by one, as the earth inhales, the seeds are laid beneath the ground, and the Spirit draws near, approaching from the heights of heaven to the depths of earth.

This, the first week of Advent is sacred to the kingdom of the minerals. These form the foundation of all our life, forming the bedrock of the planet, the scaffolding and skeleton for our existence.

In this first week, as we learn to cultivate our inner quiet, we can take time to give thanks and gratitude to the mineral kingdom. We can honor the selfless strength of the rocks, stones, crystals, bones, seashells and more: to the light and wisdom of their shape and form.

The first light of Advent,

It is the light of stones,

Light that dwells in seashells,

In crystals and in bone.

Many people choose to create a quiet ritual for Advent season, by preparing a table with four candles to notate the four weeks of Advent. In the first week, one single candle is lit daily to signify the mineral kingdom. In the second week, a second candle is also lit, for the plant kingdom; in the third week, a third is lit for the animal kingdom; and in the fourth week, a fourth is lit for the human kingdom.

This simple ritual prepares us then for the darkness of the midnight hour, Christmas Eve, when those who understand the esoteric nature of Christmas listen at the midnight hour for the sacred marriage of heaven and earth. At Christmas, the cosmic spirit of the heights enters into the non-physical space of the human heart.

In the deep darkness of a winter night, in the dark of the cave where the child is born, the mystery of birth will be celebrated. Christmas is the season to celebrate the birth of light in the darkness, the birth of spirit being in the darkness of matter.

Consider the great vastness of the universe: the spiritual beings in the depths of space, expressing themselves through the great multitude of lights in the star-spangled sky. Consider our own solar system, where planets dance around the great sun. Consider the earth, our home, and how the life on the earth swells and subsides in accordance with her yearly journey around the sun.

Since the beginning of earth-time, human beings have marked the seasons of the year with song, dance and ritual. We experience the intimate dance of the sun and the earth as the inescapable backdrop of our lives. In response, druids and wisdom-keepers, priestesses and priests, have taught humanity to seek the blessings of the harmony between sun and earth in ancient seasonal ceremonies, marking the summer and winter solstices and the spring and fall equinoxes.

Since the birth of Jesus on earth, the Christian festivals have also been placed on this cross of the year. It can be a source of deep nourishment to uncover the deep meanings behind these mysteries.

Since the beginning of earth time, human beings have marked the seasons of the year with song, dance and ritual. The seasons each have their own power, their own gesture. Indeed, the seasons seem to show the very soul of the earth as she reveals herself in light and darkness, softness and brittleness.

And if the seasons are the soul of the earth, what is her spirit?

Esoteric Christianity reveals that the spirit of the earth is the spirit of the Sun-God Himself, come to earth so that it can in time become a new sun, a source of light for the new round of Creation.

What, then, is Christmas? In the season of mid-winter, the earth wraps herself in blankets of sleep. Leaves fall from the trees and cover her over, until the snows of winter lay themselves down. The sky bends low to the earth as the sun winds its winter course over the southern hemisphere, and the days are dark and nights are long. Plants concentrate their forces in root and seed, and animals head south or hibernate in holes and caves.

The natural world becomes still.

The name of this season is Advent, the time to celebrate what is coming near: ad-venire. Advent is the season of anticipation, of expectation. The season of Advent is the beginning of the new spiritual year for the earth, and begins with the four weeks before Christmas. In these weeks, we humans have too much to do: the world becomes loud and demanding with commercials and consumerism.

Yet in the silence of nature, another sacred year is being born. The world begins to listen with spiritual ears to the approach of the Spirit-Sun, who is reborn on earth every year. And over the course of four weeks, the kingdoms of nature will celebrate Christmas, one by one.

It is the mineral kingdom that first hears the promise. The spiritual beings that carry the consciousness of the minerals exist far above the earth. From lofty heights, they sense that the spirit light of the sun is beginning to contract and descend to the earth far below. The minerals hear this, and rejoice in the silence.

In the second week of Advent, it will be the heavenly spirits who hold the wisdom of the plants who hear the promise of Christmas, and the seeds implanted in the earth ring in response.

In the third week, the spirits of the animals, closer to the earth than the spirits of rocks and plants, sense the coming promise, and the animals kingdom is also blessed.

And in the fourth week, we humans beings, in whom matter and spirit are woven into a unity of self-consciousness, sense that the purpose and promise of our earth existence is drawing physically near.

And so, in the deep darkness of a winter night, in the dark of the cave where the child is born, the mystery of birth will be celebrated. Christmas is the season to celebrate the birth of light in the darkness, the birth of spirit being in the darkness of matter.

And so we will meet every week and light a candle together, in reverence for and gratitude to the four kingdoms of nature and our journey of evolution on the earth.

 

be blessed with the archetypes of the coming year. From the stars high above to the rocks and crystals far below, the mineral hears the approach of the spirit sun

The Sacred Season of Preparation and Anticipation.

Even in the midst of the hectic pace of December, you can choose to walk consciously towards the depth of winter, the shortest and darkest time of the year. In this season, the