Celebrating Light ~ The Spiritual Meaning of The Solstice
By Melanie Beckler, 06/13/2016
7 Simple Solstice Rituals for Celebrating the Light
Throughout history, people have long gathered to celebrate and honor the sun. Special rituals during the time of the
solstice and equinox each year mark not only the movement of the sun, but the inherent cycles within spiritual and physical life as well.
Each summer in June the sun reaches its highest point in our sky and each winter in December, it reaches the lowest point.
These astronomical events are the Solstices and they correspond with each of our own rhythms, helping us to each understand what and where to focus amidst the ever changing cycles of life.
The Power of the Sun
It’s no surprise that the sun, one of the most powerful natural forces, has so much importance in human history. The history of humans honoring, worshiping and highly revering the sun spans cultures, time, and religion. Sun symbols like the compass points or the circle with a dot inside offer insight into the suns deeply spiritual meaning.
The changing seasons, much like the cycles of sowing and harvesting, have always been key points within the human life cycle. The continued changing of seasons also represents corresponding stages of your inner journey.
Spiritual Solstice Celebration
[Solstice Meaning] Just as with the cycles of the sun, there are peaks and lows in your spiritual journey as well. There are times to move forward, times to share, times to go inward and reflect, times to step back and even dark nights of the soul.
In this way, the Solstice is a natural way to reconnect with life’s divine plan and to feel a deep connection to all of life and the natural world.
Reflecting on your journey is a wonderful way to celebrate the Solstice…
Honor and celebrate your unique journey and the inherent cycles within walking a spiritual path and living a human life as well.
Solstice rituals include everything from simple gatherings, bonfires, community celebrations, dance, ceremony, and the telling and re-telling of myths, creation stories and folklore.
Each of these rituals can remind you just how connected you are with all of life. Historically, by participating in rituals, people felt understood and simultaneously intimate with nature.
Today, when celebrate the sun and align your cycles with its, your spirit gets a lovely dose of inspiring energy and an infusion of light to support you as you continue to progress along your spiritual path.
Though humanity has largely lost connection to these ceremonies and understandings, it is not too late to tap into the power of the sun and its positive influence in our lives.
7 Simple Solstice Rituals
Celebrate your light and honor the energy of the Solstice with these simple Solstice Rituals to welcome more love, light and joy into your life.
These can be modified for both summer and winter solstice, or used to reflect upon, honor and celebrate wherever you are in your particular life’s journey now.
1. Rise and Shine with the Light
Right when you wake up on the day of the solstice, before even putting your feet to the floor, allow yourself to generate and be filled with a sense of light and joy.
Tune into all that you have to be grateful for while you visualize light energy filling you and all around you.
Invite in the presence of your guides and angels, the presence of Divine light, and the energy and vibration of love.
Let yourself bask and be filled with Divine light and positive energy. Feel your oneness and connection with the Divine and All That is.
When you’re ready, begin to imagine the positive energy of the light is now rippling out around you to the entire universe.
2. Candlelight Meditation
Find a quiet time and space indoors to light a candle, and begin to focus inward.
As you consciously relax, and breathe, gaze gently into the candlelight.
Enjoy simply being, breathing, and reflecting on the qualities of the light. Begin to tune into the vast supply of light around you, as well as the light that you carry within at all times.
When you are ready, close your eyes and visualize your light glowing brighter and brighter within.
Relax and breathe, letting go of the need to focus upon the world around you, and instead, allowing yourself drift into a relaxed and peaceful meditative state.
Imagine that the light within you is shining as brightly as a star, filling the room you’re in and filling your home, city, state and country with brilliantly glowing Divine light.
In addition, you may choose to listen to a guided meditation to help you further relax, and tune into the powerful energies of the Solstice light available to you now.
3. Experience Your Oneness with Mother Earth
Walk outside and sink your feet into the Earth. Feel your energy grounding to the core of Mother Earth in a column of light. Imagine all that no longer serves you traveling down this column, and effortlessly releasing into the light at the core of the Earth.
[Solstice Ritual] Simultaneously, feel the light of the sun shining down upon you. Visualize light pouring into your crown chakra at the top of your head, warming you, refreshing your energy and filling your aura with the Divine light consciousness present in the fresh sunlight.
As you stand on Mother Earth with your feet apart, your arms uncrossed and your hands facing up in a gesture of receiving, feel the sun’s healing warmth in every part of your body. Breathe in the sunbeams.
Feel the light filling your spinal column, and your entire being. Give thanks for this time, and if you would like, begin to tune into any intentions, desires or goals that you’d like to focus on in the next six months of your life.
Enjoy this deep connection to the Earth, to the light, and to all that is. Take a minute to remember that Mother Earth is happy to provide solutions for your fears and anxieties, if you will only go to her. In addition, call on your angels and guides, enjoying and acknowledging their ever present love and support.
4. Honoring the Directions
Many indigenous tribes, and ancient cultures around the world have long observed and celebrated the directions. There’s a special kind of power you can tap into by tuning into them.
To do this, in addition to the four cardinal directions- north, south, east, and west- I like to also tune into Earth, Sky, and the light within.
As you tune into each direction, face that way.
Movement, dance, or a yoga asana are wonderful ways to further experience your connection with each of the sacred directions as you face and reflect upon each direction, one at a time.
Activate your life energy and set an intention to connect that energy with the sun and all of nature as you consciously, one by one tune into the energy of the directions.
Start by standing with your feet on the Earth. Feel your energy ground to the Earth, and feel your oneness with the Earth and All That Is.
Then tune into your connection to the sky… Feeling light above you streaming in, the air on your skin, and the light that is all around.
Next face the East. This is the direction of the rising sun, of beginnings, Divine light, new opportunities and fresh energy.
Next face the South. South is the direction of rest. It’s aligned with the work you’re meant to bring to the world, your passions, purpose and actions.
Next face the West. This is the direction in which the sun sets. A reminder to go within, to dream relax, rest and to heal.
Next face the North. We can tell the direction of North by the North star. It’s a direction of stability, wisdom, protection, and our ancestors.
Finally, look inward.
Allow yourself to just be, breathe, and feel alive and connected to your inner light, to the Earth, Sky, directions, and to all of life.
5. Setting Intentions
Find a quiet space to relax, breathe, and focus inside. When you’ve reached a deeper meditative state of mind, set the intention to feel a sense of transcendence and oneness.
Visualize this sensation being rooted within you and then expanding outward to impact all areas of your life.
Next, begin to think about what specific areas you would like to expand upon in your daily life: relationships, expressing joy, experiencing greater love and abundance, manifesting a new opportunity, a promotion at work, or whatever is important for you during the next six months.
If you are doing this ritual during winter solstice, think about those things you would like to remove from your life, focusing more on what you want to release so you can then begin to move towards what you want in the spring.
Give thanks for the opportunity to focus on this work and ask for the energy and support in remembering your intentions and moving forward on your path as you move through the next months of your life.
6. Solstice Fire Ceremony
Summer or winter, fire is a wonderful way to honor and celebrate the light as humanity has done for centuries.
Honoring the solstice with fire is simple. Light a candle or make a small outdoor fire and let yourself reflect on the beauty and qualities of the light.
On a piece of paper, write down the things you have accomplished during the last six months. Take a minute to read what you’ve written out loud before burning the paper in celebration and gratitude. Letting go of any attachment to the past and paving the way for new opportunities, manifestations, and accomplishments in the future.
This is an excellent activity for a group, or you can do it in private on your own.
7. Create a Solstice Altar
Solstice is the perfect opportunity to spend time at your personal altar, whether that is inside through meditation, see the Earth Sanctuary meditation, or outside of you in the form of an actual physical altar you create.
Creating a physical altar is a fun way to create a physical representation of your inner connection to the light and the Divine and to represent the energies you’re inspired to connect with, build and manifest in your life.
To create a Solstice altar, first find some sort of table or shelf. You may want to create it outside, or in a window where the light will shine in upon it, since the Solstice is all about tuning into the light.
Wherever you choose to create your altar, choose colors of fabric, objects or candles that remind you of the sun, of your spirituality, and of connecting with the Divine, the sun, the natural world, and more fully with yourself.
Remember that the Solstice is a time of celebration and connection…
Let the altar you create remind you of this in a way that is personal to you.
The Energetic Difference Between Summer and Winter Solstice
Energetically, what is the difference between the Summer and Winter Solstice?
The Summer Solstice
June 20/21 in the Northern Hemisphere, December 20/21 in the Southern Hemisphere
At this time, the sun is the farthest north that it ever gets over the equator. When this happens, it’s a time of energetic opening. There is so much celestial potential during this time as the sun brings high energy, warmth, and light into our lives. Symbolically the Summer solstice represents enlightenment, awakening, and the triumph of lightness over darkness.
During the time of the Summer solstice, it’s a time to celebrate forward movement – advancing further into light – and remembering and honoring the intrinsic light within yourself.
Summer solstice is all about expressing gratitude for the gifts of harvest, bounty, and abundance. It’s a wonderful opportunity to enjoy being outside, connecting with nature, and incorporating your awareness of the connection between wealth, health, and natural living.
The Winter Solstice
December 20/21 in the Northern Hemisphere, June 20/21 in the Southern Hemisphere
The darkest day of the year comes when the sun reaches its lowest point over the equator. This is a natural time for reflection, and moving inwards into a sort of spiritual hibernation.
Common rituals of winter solstice include meditation, contemplation, and seeking silence. It’s a powerful time to slow down, focus inward and to let go of the old, outdated, and all that no longer serves.
The winter solstice is the perfect time for making plans, setting intentions, and really you can think of it as the cycle of life that’s right before the birth of a new project, event, or phase of life.
Honoring The Solstice
When you honor and observe the solstice, you are connecting not only with the sun and nature, but with ancient peoples who have performed these rituals over the centuries.
Though we have largely lost connection to the ceremonies and understandings surround solstice and our connection to the nature, it is not too late to tap into the power of the sun and its positive influence in your life.
With love and light,
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