Photo by Grethe Boe

 

I love the dark hours of my being.
My mind deepens into them.

– Rainer Maria Rilke

For the Advent season this year, the Photographer and I are reading a devotional related to divinity in nature and connection to the seasons. Winter, it tells us, offers the opportunity to turn inward and reflect, to consider our ancestors, and to ask ourselves what we intend to bring into the world.

Last night’s reading asked the question, what do you remember of winter from your childhood? The Photographer said he did not remember it being so cold. His winters were probably much colder then, because he lived in South Dakota, but as a child, he wasn’t focused on that. This is true for me too. Winters when I was young were never the hassle they are now, the worry about getting the windshield defrosted so I can get to work on time, the dread of being hit with that icy breeze when I open the front door, the concern over the heating bill. Winters then, like so many things, were an opportunity to play, to explore, to enjoy a warm fire, and of course the exciting possibility that school could be cancelled if it snowed enough. What was a little cold to all of that?

I want to make it my practice this Winter not to dread the cold, or the dark, but to let my mind deepen into it, to consider bringing more of my joy into the world, and less of my pointless adult frustration.

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