This Wednesday, December 21st is the first day of winter in the Northern Hemisphere otherwise known as the Winter Solstice. Winter Solstice is worthy of celebration as it signifies the returning of light as each day forward begins to grow longer and longer until the first day of Summer. It’s also a day to set intentions that bring you into alignment in preparation for the new season and year ahead. In order to bring in new energies, it’s good to practice a release of the old ways or stagnant energies. Letting go offers freedom of the past which allows us to move forward into an abundance mindset.
Here are some Winter Solstice rituals that you may consider:
1. Burning Bowl Ritual
The purpose of the ceremony is to release the past, negativity, regrets, suffering or unhealthy relationships. The process allows us to shift our perspective and focus on what is ahead. Here’s how to perform a Burning Bowl Ceremony:
Create your environment. Make it peaceful in order to be in a grounded state of mind. Be near a safe place to burn, like a fireplace.
Grab a pen and paper.
Write down what you are ready to release. The action of writing feelings down allows you to label and name specifically what it is that you want to release. It also can help shift hidden beliefs and thoughts from the subconscious to conscious awareness
Repeat your list out loud. Take a moment to say goodbye to each item and toss it in the fireplace.
2. Invite the light back into your life
Whether it’s going for a walk on those crisp, sunnier days or lighting several candles when it’s dark -both brighten your day or evening. Check out tree lights around the city while finding beauty in the contrast of light against dark.
3. Immerse yourself in a sunset view
For many of us, the sunset is a meditative moment and a sacred natural experience. A sunset reminds us of our essence and gives us guidance on our path. Sunsets offers us hope, possibility and an opportunity to reset. Ralph Waldo Emerson said it best,
“Every sunset brings the promise of a new dawn.”
4. Create a list of what illuminates you. In other words, what brings you joy?
Time with friends? Nature Hikes? A favorite beach? Traveling to a new place? Sometimes we just need to be reminded of the things that make us happy, especially if we are in a funk.
This week in yoga, we will practice a winter solstice sequence which includes Surya Namaskar A (Sun Salutations) and restorative or hip-opening yoga postures. We will be creating a short list of what we want to release and what we want to manifest. A theta healing manifestation meditation will be incorporated at the end of class.