2020-LastFullMoonBlog

Cold Moon and Reflection

2020 last full moon

This week, we are witnessing the last full moon of 2020. It’s the last full moon of the decade.

I like taking time to look at the moon – particularly the full moon. I take comfort in knowing that all around the world, millions of us are looking at the same moon at the same time. And we all are looking at the same moon that all of humanity has looked at over our shared time on Earth. And billions more of us will look at the same moon for millennia to come.

When I stop to stare at the moon, I feel a connection. I feel as if a great reflection of light has shone upon me. Not just the light of the sun reflected off its surface – but the light of these souls, past and present, all staring up at the moon in wonder.

It’s interesting, this concept of “reflection.” Thousands of years ago, the brightest minds in our land believed that the moon created its own light, until a thinker named Anaxagoras proved differently. No. The moon doesn’t create light. It reflects light. It’s a mirror.

This got me thinking about something a little closer to my chest: my heart. For many thousands of years, it was supposed that the heart created all of the blood in the human body. The liver consumed it. It wasn’t until 1628 that William Harvey proved that no, it doesn’t create blood. The heart circulates it. It is an engine.

These are groundbreaking discoveries that have taught us so much about our universe and ourselves. But, I imagine, for a moment, that when these discoveries came – there may have been a little sadness.

Sadness for an understanding that no, the moon isn’t a creator. It is a reflective rock.

Sadness for a realization that no, the heart isn’t a creator. It is a circulator.

I’ve felt this sadness. We’ve all felt this sadness: the sadness that comes from a feeling that our life isn’t what we wanted it to be. Maybe we didn’t discover a cure for cancer, or win a Nobel Prize, or win an Oscar for our environmental documentary.

And for a moment, we have a sadness: because we think we’re not what we dreamed we’d be.

We feel, dare I say, inadequate.

But I’m here to tell you that isn’t true.

Think of the moon. Is the moon any less special because it doesn’t create its own light? No! The moon gives us light in the darkness, serving as a literal beacon and guiding light when we are enveloped by cold and confusion.

The moon connects us with each other: it serves as a spiritual conduit with souls around the world.

Is the heart any less magnificent because it doesn’t create blood? I think not. It sends life-sustaining blood to our brains, to our lungs, to our toes, to our liver. It sustains us. The heart drives our body. It doesn’t need to create our lifeblood to spread our lifeblood.

We are just as magnificent as the moon and the heart. And when we discover our purpose or where we excel – be it as a sharp accountant, an inspiring teacher, a nurturing father – we must remember that our magnificence is not tied to what others have envisioned for us.

We all have a role to play. It just might be that our role is unexpected. It might be something we never imagined.

Our moon lifts our tides; our hearts oxygenate our bodies.

When we stare at the moon, the energy of our hearts ties to every human who has ever stared at the moon, past and present. It’s a mirror to the souls of our human race. It reflects the sun’s energy to us, and our energy onto each other.

Is there anything as magnificent? No other object in the universe does for us what our moon does. No other heart serves your body as yours does. No other person makes the same difference that you make.

You are magnificent. And – equally important – everyone is as magnificent.

Let us celebrate our uniqueness while recognizing the immaculate validity of each of us: children of the human race. Embrace this mystic, inner energy.

Can you feel it? The energy we share? Learn how to master this interconnected network of energy.

And consider further activating your unique gifts and learn how to embrace the pure radiant light of healing through a journey of Medical Intuition; you can learn all about that upcoming course and join me here.

And reflect your newfound knowledge back into your shared community.

Become as the moon. Reflect your energy and set the world alight with your magnificence.

2020 Winter Solstice

Standing Still in the Solstice

2020 Winter Solstice

I’ve been thinking a lot lately about standing still. About pausing, breathing.

We’re approaching the Winter Solstice, the time of year where the day is shortest in the Northern Hemisphere. At the arctic circle, it’s completely dark for 24 hours.

I know that many of us have felt that we’re facing our own, personal winter solstices. Our communities feel fractured. Uncertainty, loss, and grief are now part of the atmosphere.

We all want to know, “when will this darkness end?”

But the word solstice doesn’t refer to this darkness. It refers to something different.

Imagine, for a moment, an invisible line in the sky. Day or night. It bisects the sky into the North and South, just like the equator around our planet. We call this the celestial equator. Twice a year (at the equinoxes), our Sun crosses this equator. Right now, it is heading South. On the Solstice, the Sun reaches its southernmost point in our sky. It takes a pause.

It stands still.

That’s what the word “solstice” refers to. The Sun “standing still.”

With the Sun’s pause comes a host of other occurrences. The shortest day, the longest night. It’s easy to look at these extremes and feel a sense of foreboding – that somehow night has enveloped the day, and the Sun itself has become frozen. But this sense of foreboding ignores the beauty and hope that the Winter Solstice represents. And embracing this beauty might be the key to us breaking through our own Winter Solstices.

Like a wayward traveler who has voyaged to a distant land, the Sun finally stands still on December 21st. It pauses, holding its place in our sky, before finally returning North.

Think about it. The Winter Solstice is only the shortest day because the sun stands still and then returns North. It’s only the darkest day because the next day is slightly brighter. It’s only the lowest point because the light turns back.

The Winter Solstice is the Northern Hemisphere’s rock bottom. It’s the “darkest before the dawn moment.” And this “darkest before the dawn” can inform how we journey our own, Spiritual Solstices.

Our journeys this year have been unexpected and perilous. Oftentimes, it feels like we’re a passenger in our journeys, as opposed to a pilot. But we have a choice that we can make – an action that can give us insight, strength, and (hopefully) some community in these fragmented times.

We can pause.

On December 21st, I encourage all of us to pause – collectively, though separated. I want us all to feel the faint rays of the Sun and imbue ourselves with the energy of a star and a planet who have paused in extremity.

Absorb this energy. Coax out the intuition of this celestial stillness.

Let’s pause each of our journeys – for just that brief day – to take stock of how far we’ve gone, where we’ve come from, and where we wish to go. Let’s stand in our stillness, and look back at the joys we wish to recapture.

We can examine our choices, our habits, our relationships; and decide how we will carry forward.

The Winter Solstice is a blessed time! It’s a rare time for introspection, reflection, and change. This energy is mirrored in our cultural celebrations around winter. New Year’s Resolutions? What is that but a pause and a change of direction?

I know that the Winter Holidays can be a circus. We all work double-time to purchase that perfect Hannukah gift, make that perfect Christmas roast, and plan that perfect New Year’s celebration. It’s hard to pause when there’s so much to do!

But your spirit deserves a Solstice.

Embody that energy of the Winter Solstice in order to become an active participant in your own journey. It feels counter-intuitive, but by simply taking a day to be still, you will gain unprecedented agency and insight into your own voyage through life.

It’s always darkest before the dawn.

Deborah

2020-EmbracingtheLiminalityof2020Blog

Embracing the Liminality of 2020

Embracing Liminality

I want to talk with you about liminality. About thin places. Thin times.

Liminality refers to a state of transition or of a rite of passage. It is an innate quality present within a space, a time, or a person.

Perhaps the most popular date of liminality would be Hallowtide – the three days making up Hallowe’en, All Saints’ Day, and All Souls’ Day, which I wrote and spoke about at length last Fall.

We see the liminality of Hallowtide reflected in our celebrations. We embrace our fears of death as we cuddle on the couch watching the latest horror film. We embody our fears as we dress in the clothes of our monsters and ghosts. We commune with death as we make offerings to our departed loved ones.

Hallowtide is a thin time. I want to talk about another thin time.

Friends, this year has been (for all of us) a very trying time. Many of us have lost loved ones. Many of us have had close calls with death ourselves. Destruction, anxiety, and illness have been more present this year than in many generations.

It appears that this year itself has been a thin time. The veil between our worlds feels gossamer where it once felt heavy.

It’s an uneasy time. This feeling of thinness between our worlds has made everyone feel uneasy.

As we depart from Hallowtide and move toward the Winter Holidays, it can be tempting to try and ignore the thinning of the veil. The Winter Solstice has always been a spiritual and natural “reset” for our world, bringing new vitality as the sun begins to increase in strength again.

So many have thought “2020 is going to be a year not to repeat. 2021 is my 2020 do-over.”

What you’re hoping for is to simply “patch up” the veil between our worlds. It’s a natural reaction to such a complicated time. It’s not fun being uneasy. You want that unstable feeling to end.

But these thin times are rare, and it is important to understand the opportunity, wisdom, and enlightenment that thin moments and thin places can offer.

Just as on Dia de Los Muertos, you commune with your ancestors, during the waning weeks of 2020, you must commune with the energy flowing between our worlds.

I know that is a difficult choice. After all, it sometimes feels that far more energy has flown from our world to the spirit world this year. It can be vulnerable to open yourself up to the other world. But embracing the power of liminality allows you to cultivate understanding and enlightenment, helping you start the new year on the right foot.

So how do you embrace liminality?

Find thin places. Thin places are physical, real places where the distance between our world and the spirit world is at its closest. These places may not be the same for everyone.

For some of you, these thin places might be as simple as a hill in an empty forest. For others, a grand ruin in a far-off country might be the thinnest of places. It’s a place where there is an immediate sense that a greater power is present. You feel connected to a force, an energy, a divinity that you can’t discern elsewhere.

Stand still in the thin places. Don’t interrogate. Be present, and allow yourself to become a vessel, a conduit for wisdom and light. Imbue yourself with the energy that crosses over.

As you approach the Winter Holidays of Christmas, Hannukah, Yule, Kwanzaa, and many others, fully enmesh yourself in the ritual of these holidays.

Ritual without meaning is ceremony. Fully realized ritual allows you to tap into the energy of this thin time.

Your rituals, whether it be lighting advent candles, burning the yule log, or baking Christmas cookies, further thins the veil between our worlds. Use your rituals to glean insight from the thinness of 2020. Use this insight to position yourself for 2021.

Let the thin times roll!

2020 Winter Solstice

The Abduction of Persephone, the Goddess Queen of the Underworld in the Dark Days of Winter

2020 Winter Solstice

The trees are bare and stark. The sky blackens with storm clouds. It gets dark outside early in the day. In the gloomiest part of the year, all you may want is to sit in front of a blazing fire, snuggled up in a warm blanket, a cup of hot chocolate in hand. But know that we’re coming up to the Winter Solstice, when, slowly but surely, the light starts coming back. In the dead of winter, when spring’s flowers and budding trees are still months away, the days start getting longer, and more light starts to infiltrate our awareness.

The descent into darkness is laid out in the Greek myth of Persephone. Zeus gives his brother Hades (the King of the Underworld) permission to abduct his daughter Persephone. Hades rises up from a dark hole in the earth, seizes Persephone, and takes her off to the underworld to be his wife. The permission given to Hades by Zeus shows that the journey into darkness is not at odds with the will of heaven. Her abduction is a step forward in her growth as a spiritual being, a rite of passage into a fuller life.

Persephone resists this process, as we all do. She seeks help from gods and men, none of whom will come to her rescue. Finally her mother, Demeter, appeals to Zeus and he agrees to set Persephone free—if she has not eaten any food in the underworld. By the time Hermes arrives in the underworld with Zeus’s message, Persephone has already eaten some pomegranate seeds. As a compromise, she is allowed to spend six months a year with her mother in the upper world, and then must join her husband in the underworld for the rest of the year. Thus, Persephone encounters her shadow side most profoundly through her intimate relationship.

The spiritual journey is more than just an ascent into the light; it is also a descent into the shadow world, where we earn the wisdom we need to be lightbearers. Of course, the best way to stay in the light, no matter how dark the winter (or your life) may be, is to connect with the light within you in whatever way you find most conducive. You may do it through a practice of meditation and/or prayer, through any of the creative arts, or through some form of service to those who are in need.

You can find comfort and warmth by joining with others, whether in traditional religious holiday observances or by creating your own ceremonies and traditions. Shared experiences of consciousness are a powerful way to increase your light.

It’s possible to find light even in our darkest moments in life. Like Persephone’s underworld, the darkness holds the source of our greatest illumination. My diagnosis of cancer as a young woman held within it the seed of my becoming a healer. Your higher self, your inner Zeus, knows what you need in order to grow stronger in the light.

Are you in the grips of the underworld? Instead of denying or running away from or fighting against a plunge into an emotional, physical, mental, or spiritual dark night of the soul, use whatever challenges come your way to grow inside. Here are some tips on how to surrender to the process and come out lighter and brighter:

  • Don’t label something as bad or wrong. Let go of the need to judge what is happening to you. Accept the experience for what it is.
  • Don’t blame others. Take responsibility for your own life.
  • Stop projecting stories from your past onto this moment in time. The same goes for living in fear of the future.
  • Embrace whatever challenges come your way, and don’t worry if things don’t turn out as you had planned. Trust that higher forces are guiding you.
  • Even though you might not be able to see the big picture yet, know that there is a reason for whatever you are experiencing. You are part of the grand plan.
  • Be at peace, and be willing to do the inner work that is needed to heal the outer struggle.

 

We are all being called to be lightbearers, to help shine light in the dark corners of the world. We are spiritual beings who are here with a purpose and a mission. Our soul qualities need to develop. So whatever dark days you are living through, know that there is, in fact, light at the end of the tunnel. Persephone arises into the upper world every spring, signaling the time of rebirth into the light.