Dancing with Darkness
“Hope begins in the dark,
the stubborn hope
that if you just show up and do the right thing,
the dawn will come.”
Where I come from, winter feels like a time of stagnation or even death, as every tree loses its leaves, the grass grows brown and dormant, and the days grow dark and cold. Last week was the winter solstice here in the Southern Hemisphere, and down here the symbolism of the solstice has its own unique flavour. As nature becomes quiet, we’re reminded that even in the midst of the darkness and cold, life persists beneath the surface.
As nature draws into a state of rest and introspection, yoga reminds us to do the same. It invites us to turn inward, to delve into the depths of our own consciousness, and to explore our dark, inner spaces.
So many of the greatest mysteries of life begin this way, as a powerful urge for growth enveloped in a small, dark space. Two cells become a human being while fully enveloped in darkness. The transformation from bulb to flower lies in a dark, quiet time beneath the soil. In the darkness, both bulbs and babies undergo growth that is invisible to our eyes. This time in the dark is where babies and bulbs gather the power they need to burst into the world.
The winter solstice is an invitation to honour the beauty of the unseen. It’s a reminder that beneath what we can see, remarkable things are taking shape.
Now is the time to trust in the unseen forces that guide our journey, knowing that even in our darkest moments, there is a subtle radiance that will guide us toward the light.
The solstice reminds us that the light persists, like a solitary ember among the ashes, patiently waiting to be reignited. It invites us to reflect on the idea that as much as we want life to be all light, the most profound growth often happens in our darkest times. Joy and sorrow, light and dark are all intertwined in the tapestry of our lives.
So let us celebrate this unique dance with darkness, knowing that even in the coldest, darkest winter the light patiently waits, ready to illuminate our path and guide us toward the blossoming of our own souls.