When you do things from your soul, you feel a river moving in you, a joy.
Today is the third Advent Sun-day of our group prayer/spell/meditation, as we prepare to welcome the rebirth of the Solstice Light, and the celebratory arrival of the Child of Promise.
If you are just now joining us, it does not matter if you missed out on the last two Sun Days. Your energy and good thoughts are still welcome, and indeed, I believe they are absolutely necessary.
To read the particulars, including a number of interfaith suggestions and what to do if you live in the Southern Hemisphere, click here. It is incredibly simple really, and takes very little time. What matters is the awareness of your spirit, not the name of your religion or the erudite complexity of any words or rites.
Tonight, preferably at sunset (but whatever time works best for you), take a few quiet moments to be fully present as you stand before your wreath.
Turn out the lights, and pause, giving yourself time to let go of the day you have just finished. Note that you are on a holy threshold of in-between. You are there with countless hundreds up and down the face of our Grandmother Gaia as darkness falls upon our blue planet, and thousands more who have come before you, in previous time zones, as well as those who will pick up where you leave off, in later time zones.
All in oneness, in time out of time.
Can you feel the hushed gatherings all around you?
Allow the dusk to settle you, and quiet all the doing-ness of this busy time. Give thanks for the gentle dark, that allows rest, that welcomes silence, and that strengthens us, body and spirit.
Relighting Candle One
When you are ready, light the candle we first ignited on Nov. 28. For Pagans and Witches, this would be the candle for the Element of Air or the direction of East. For many Christian traditions it represents Hope. As you light it, honor its energy with breath, song, poetry, memory, thought, discernment, and the hope in a new day dawning. Bask in its beautiful light, giving thanks in whatever ways your heart speaks to you.
Reigniting the Second Candle
Next, gaze at the second candle – the one we lit, along with Candle One, for the first time last week. This one is in the direction of South and represents the Element of Fire: passion, will, magic, desire, energy. For Christian traditions, this candle represents the Bible, or, in some denominations it is the candle for Love. Let your gratitude for the warmth and light of Fire, and the Life Force of Wisdom and Love fill your awareness as you light your candle. Celebrate this in any way that feels right to you.
Sparking the Third Flame
Then, tonight, we add, for the first time, the third candle. This candle is for West, the Element of Water, and some of us like to use a blue candle to represent this.
In many Christian traditions, this is the candle for Joy. This is why some churches suggest that the third candle be colored pink.
In Earth-centered traditions like the Craft, we know that Water is the Guardian of our emotions, and very much includes Joy. It is also the Element of intuition, empathy, and compassion, and is sacred to Autumn and the setting sun.
As we all contemplate our beautiful candle, we can honor the many feelings that flow through us: the ups and downs that can be tumultuous at times, strangely prescient, that open our hearts and sometimes break them, that bring cleansing tears and joyful laughter. What a numinous gift it is to be blessed with emotions!
Water Is Life
As you gaze upon this wondrous addition of light to the wreath before you, consider also the life-giving blessings of Water. See in your mind’s eye the beautiful rains when they come gently, in balanced abundance.
Give thanks for the incredible opulence of turning on a tap at your home, and having clean, pure, hot and cold water pour forth. Such luxury was beyond the imagination of gilded pharaohs and emperors of old!
Remember Mama Ocean in your thanksgiving – the Mother of us all, the ever-restless, changing, flowing source of all life on our blue planet.
Know that the river of blood, tears, and joy is a deep, ancient one that defines our humanity. It connects us to the Ancestral realms, and reminds us that the deep transformation we so desperately need is possible. May this knowing help steady the fear, the hurt, and the suffering that troubles our spirits.
You also might take this opportunity to say prayers for a world in which all beings have universal access to abundant clean water. More priceless than oil or gold, drinkable water is an increasingly rare treasure.
Not only is global climate change making fresh water an endangered species, in many places, multinational corporations are building pipes to transport fossil fuels and toxic chemicals across family lands and towns, jeopardizing their water.
Others are quietly buying up local water sources around the globe, and turning native waters into a commodity for scandalous profits. They even call it “blue gold.”
Thus, with this candle, let us vow to take seriously our stewardship for Earth’s source of life itself and know that water is for sharing.
Peaceful May Your Waters Be
I love that this is the candle that initiates the week of the Halcyon Days, when the Gods stilled the waters for the nesting birds at Solstice. I’ll be writing more about this bittersweet myth later in the week.
Meantime, when you are ready, give thanks and then gently extinguish the third, the second, and the first candles.
May we never forget the gifts and lessons of Water. May our Waters be blessed, and like Water, may we learn to heal, to bless, to forgive, and to flow. May Joy shine from our hearts, each of us, to one another.
Blessings to you and your beloveds.
So mote it be.