February 21

Harnessing Light in a Time of Darkness


by Phyllis Curott

I am an enemy of the way the things are.

Combative and startling language in this season of peace, light and love, I know.   But despite daily proclamation from one spiritual front or another, even “Paganism,” I can’t subscribe to the notion that all is as it was meant to be.

Just look at things as they are – the damage we’ve done to Mother Earth and her children, to one another, to ourselves.  In the next few years, half the animals and plants on the planet will be gone.  Look without turning away, look into the darkness.

Things are not as they are meant to be.

So what are we to do?  Eleanor Roosevelt, one of my heroines, said that it is better to light a single candle than to curse the darkness.

Light in a time of darkness

At Winter Solstice, we remember that, no matter how long the surrounding night, there is light shining harnessing light time darknesswithin us and returning to the world around us.  At Imbolc, we lit candles to forge ourselves into swords of truth and justice.

Together, we find strength and hope because no matter how barren, unnatural or painful things are, everything changes.  We know, in our hearts, that One thing becomes another, in the Mother.

To be an enemy of what is unnatural is to be the Earth’s agent of change.  Having inflicted her wounds, it is our responsibility to heal them and in doing so we will heal our own.  We must transform our greed into generosity, cruelty into compassion, domination into devotion and the barren darkness of death into the nourishing darkness of the womb.

Things that are not as they are meant to be are meant to be changed.

This is the wisdom of the winter season, the wisdom of Mother Earth and Her magic of rebirth.   This is the mystery of cauldron and flame, of darkness and light, of love and life.  And so, let us kindle the light of love within the darkness that nurtures new life as it was meant to be, and let us remember where we are, and why we are here.

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