Here in the high latitudes of the northern hemisphere, the season which brings the shortest days and the longest nights is upon us. Like the summer solstice (it's twin inversion), the winter solstice is a time of extremes: both the season of the brightest inner spiritual lights, and of the darkest brooding human melancholya.
We see both extremes manifested in the three religions of Abraham. We see them in the week long Roman festival of Saturnalia (Christmas was in fact artificially bolted onto this pre-existing foundation by the early Christians to help give it a running start with the Roman population). We see them in the Druid, Norse, Teutonic practices such as the Yule log and the indoor decorated evergreen tree. We see them reflected everywhere in secular culture with lights, tinsel, and ever more garish "Candy Cane Lane" garrish neighborhood displays doen up in lights and in animation.
At the heart of this season are miracles, be they the birth of the one who overcame death through resurrection, the miracle of the eight day long light, or the beginning of the return of the sun, the universal symbol of light and life to the northern hemisphere.
This Saturday finds me preoccupied dreams blue fading into back as we approach the zenith of darkness on December 21st. The deep winter shadows of the melancholia are at their strongest.
Death arrives; overtaking and devouring all who choose in vain to make their heroic last stand in its path. And yet, even in the underworld, one’s consciousness continues as a flickering point of light, inextinguishable even as it is enveloped by the black totality.
Next week: In the deepest darkness, the brightest light is found, You can get your bowl of Saturday Night Soup for the Soul by clicking the jukebox.