Harvest the Light
Blog #7 in the Soothing Series: Gentle ways to regain your composure and find some inner peace
“Now is the time to shore up your practice of harvesting the light.” – Teo Bishop
Might harvesting the light offer an option to my usual resistance to the coming darkness of winter? I often say I can accept the cold of New England winters, but not the short days. Even though we are fortunate to have many brilliant sunlit days in the winter, still, I need more light. Our Contemplative Circle leader brought this reading by Teo Bishop to us in October, with the theme of harvesting. I offer it to you in this annual season of darkness.
“Now is the time to stand before the altar of your life and practice rekindling the sun inside your heart.”– Teo Bishop
Teo writes about harvesting the light as a spiritual practice. For me it is more of a holistic process. My soul needs the Light, my doctor tells me that my body needs the Vitamin D, and my mind needs to counteract the potential of seasonal affective disorder.
“For in the coming months, the light shall wane.” – Teo Bishop
How shall we harvest light? Can I put it in a basket, as I did with the autumn vegetables? Or perhaps in a pretty glass bottle on the windowsill? Teo suggests“Let it begin with something small. Light a candle, take one deep breath, then extinguish the flame. That’s all…. hold the flame in your imagination, and see the light growing. Let it fill you and shine forth.” I love this practice, introduced during the monthly Contemplative Circle, and now occasionally add it to my everyday experience of prayer.
“The darkness will stretch out over the day, and if you are not steadfast in the lighting of your own fires, the winter will be difficult to bear.” – Teo Bishop
I also need the tangible experience of feeling the light. I seek the sun, soaking the light in through my eyes. Sitting in a sunny window or better yet, curled up on a sunny rug with a pet, I soak the light, and warmth, into every cell. I seek early sunsets and late sunrises, and deep black starry skies. As winter draws near, I’m looking for more winter ways to harvest the light in my Self and in my home. Bishop inspires me to find small things and small ways. Rainbows from crystal prisms. Warm smiles. The warm glow emanating from a cozy looking house. I need it all, and offer it to you, too.
May light fill your body, mind, and spirit this winter. How will you harvest the light?!
The Soothing Series
Sometimes, attaining a state of relaxation seems impossible.
Even if you know the benefits – quality sleep, resistance to infection, less
muscle pain, better problem solving – you cannot get to a relaxed state from
your stressed state. Fortunately, even if relaxing seems unattainable, soothing
yourself can reduce your stress level by a degree or perhaps two.
Sometimes simple soothing strategies are not going to meet your needs. At those times, get expert help. Call your doctor, your therapist, your pastor, or get yourself to an emergency room. Be safe.
Soothe yourself when you have had a difficult day, have too much on your plate, or perhaps are experiencing a period of intense change. You deserve it.
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