I've come to consider the stretch between winter solstice (solstice meaning "sun standing still") and gregorian new years day as a the dark moon of the year.
Akin to the dark moon of a month, the time when the moon doesn't show in the sky at all for three nights, these 10 days are an elongated exhale when the point where we sit is farthest from the suns influence before it quietly begins to re-enter the reaches of the light and move towards the spring that will come in a few moons time.
This year, this time for me has not been restful or solitary, and I am feeling the grief of that. But the invitation exists, nonetheless, and in the moments when I am burrowing down into my den and listening to the whispers of the mystery, I feel many things.
Peace. Beauty. Terror. Wonder.
And the cacophony of metamorphosis.
This beautiful planet and the human endeavor woven within its keeping are both changing fast. Where in the past we may have seen hotter summers and a little more of a bill at the store or the restaurant, suddenly we sit with a fire season that never seems to end (here in the west of the US), winter storms that devastate reaches where there has never been enough snow to require that the city keep a plow, and grocery bags that now cost a quarter to twice more than they did for the same stuff a few weeks ago.
Suicide stories are everywhere and constant: I hear one almost every day. Many are traversing the hardest territory they've ever been pushed to explore in their embodied lives, and a lot of people aren't making it through (and I do not fault anyone for that).
I wonder if the way this experience feels right now is how the caterpillar feels as it dissolves into the nothing that lives between its caterpillar life and its butterfly life.
Is the caterpillar terrified? Does it cling to what was? Does it fear the inevitability of its trajectory? Is there a peace? A surrender? Some transcendental tapestry of all this and more?
However it feels, there is a process underway, and there is no turning back once it's begun.
Real change isn't easy. Especially when we are dealing with vast, dynamic, convoluted, toxic and metastisized social structures, indeed, the very structure of society itself.
The way we live has reached its inevitable conclusion on multiple fronts at once, and even people who aren't cognitively present to that can feel it.
This is the territory of initiation.
Once in an initiatory portal, the only way out is through.
There's no way to skirt the reality of peak oil.
There's no way to bypass the grand solar minimum, or the steady shift of the poles of the earth.
There's no way to rationalize the reality that the political structures of the world only work for the few at the expense of the very, very, many.
These things are inexorable in their truth and trajectory. As in the story line has an inevitable conclusion, and we are approaching it closely enough to see the texture of the wall that the writing is spread across.
And these things must be met.
When we are delivered into the keeping of an initiation, we are compelled to let something so much deeper than what we've been and what we've known rise up within us to meet the magnitude of the moment.
It changes us.
There's a kind of annihilation in there, a discomfort so profound in its urgency that it feels like burning alive.
But we get to choose the nature of the fire by choosing the nature of our participation.
Do we burn like a phoenix who surrenders the very sanctuary of their body to the flames to be reborn? Or do we burn like we have been captured by Inquisitors and lashed to a stake that they get to light? Or do we burn like a wet wood fire, morose and resistant and bitterly disgorging plumes of choking smoke without much heat to speak of? Can we make it a hearth fire that warms the temple, simmers the stew, beckons the weary to restoration?
We get to choose. Frequently not our circumstances, but always the quality of our participation, and therefor the tone of our metamorphosis.
I believe in us, I believe in the more beautiful world our hearts know is possible, I believe that life is calling us to step up and stand tall in the magnificence that is our true nature.
And I know that meeting it as an initiation, making my fire a phoenix path, is the most empowering and empowered way I've found to navigate the times when I have little control over the over-story but it affects me all the way down to the minutest detail.
The Phoenix Path is the path for me.
How about you?
If I can help you to rise up from the ashes, please reach out and let's talk. I'm an evolutionary mentor and I have space in my Soul Power Mentoring practice to help you transform pain into power so that you can live and give your medicine well in this amazing crucible of a moment.
DM me to schedule a consultation call.
All the love and blessings to you
art by Susan Seddon Boulet