Happy Spring Equinox, folks! If you haven't been living under a celestial rock, you probably know that there are a lot of forces converging on these recent days, what with solar eclipses, New Moon in Pisces, and a solar storm of Northern lights…
New Moon at the edge of spring, is the perfect time to revisit, reconsider, and evaluate our plans and priorities. I think that part of why New Year's resolutions don't often stick for folks, is that we simply forget about them after a while, or they become irrelevant to our changing situations, or that we prioritize other things over them as the year wears on.
Small, seasonal plans, dreams, and intentions, can be way more effective that way.
A reader recently asked me to write more about my divination and spiritual practice and what their more mystical meanings might be to me, and that got me thinking about ritual. It struck me that ultimately, I'm a pretty practical person.
Doing something like setting intentions and reading Tarot for a new season, is for me, about taking a little bit time for myself to think about those things, to acknowledge my strengths and weaknesses in a given situation.
With others ritual is simply about creating a space in which you're all able to be together as a community in a focused, meaningful way. Rituals, whether they be around birth, marriage, death, coming-of-age are completely intrinsic to us as a species. They create a sense of cohesion and fellowship. These days, in our society of fragmented, separate nuclear families, we don't always get to satisfy that basic need for communal ritual, and often, when one is offered most people enjoy it greatly. At the same time, ritual is also the most ordinary, natural thing. Each family has them, as do most communities, each person can have their own. Getting a Christmas tree is a ritual, a housewarming party is a ritual, a Passover meal is one, even high school graduation is one. It's only that we often forget to cultivate their ritualistic meanings, to stop and focus and really revel in what they represent.
They have always marked changes in seasons, whether natural, or human, and it's important for us to notice those and celebrate them. I feel like if we take time to acknowledge them, their meanings will become apparent, and never be lost.
They may not always be the esoteric, magical mystery we might imagine them to be, but a little ritual goes a long ways. Of course, there's a deeper meaning to them, and maybe someday I'll write about those meanings, but sometimes it helps to simply think rituals as a little bit of self-care, or spreading the love we have for our community, friends and family.
What's your ritual?
And hey, if it's not raining where you are, look up and tell me if you see any auroras!