It is that time of year when I become reflective, enter that quiet space of the calendar where I crave a moment to be still, take stock on the last year’s events, and think about where I’m headed when old man 2013 fades to the ages. What will Baby 2014 bring into the world? Will he be precocious and playful, or disruptive and colicky? When I finally take down twinkling strings that symbolize the happiest time of the year, what will take its place when the dark of winter nights close around me?
Last year at this time, I shared my Thankfulness for the Light, with an article based on Josh Groban’s song, which encourages us to connect as humans and find each other’s light.
There is a place we’re all connected
Each of us can find each other’s light
It’s kind of what we do here at Searching for Light in the Darkness, find subjects that in some way, offer a whimsy of light in a world that often seems mired in chaotic darkness. It could be a character I’m developing for a dystopian tale, a controversial science principle that might find its way into a new story, or random, off-the-wall humor to make you smile (smiling BTW, is one of the best forms of human light).
I have always been fascinated with how day and night invade each other’s boundaries, how shadow and light spar like boxers. I collect visual renderings of it on a Pinterest Board. When early humans developed a frontal lobe and began to ponder the “what could happen” concept of future events, light became a refuge. Darkness blinded us. Darkness scared us. Darkness hid things that went bump in the night. We equate light with warm, cold with dark. Storm clouds brashly veil the sun with physical violence that can tear apart whole cities. Heavily shadowed forest trails make us think twice if we should enter. Specters and ghosts do their evil in the dark, feeding the fear of which we cannot see. It is why our stories give darkness the black hat, so the hero in white can save us.
What makes darkness so frightful is how it seeps into our souls, our psyche, slinking into our inner thoughts, blanketing our inner light that makes us human. Sometimes we are too weak to counteract it, and fall victim to its black-oil embrace. Media news is full of it. We are drawn to its terrible manifestations with fearful curiosity.
We can argue that Darkness got a Bad Rap. After all, didn’t our existence start with dark? Isn’t the universe composed of mostly dark matter? To paraphrase an earlier article, life in general is prejudiced to live in the light. We take joy with the spectrum of color, a sparkled reflection, and warmth that radiates from light. Light grows our sustenance. Our human spirit is naturally imprinted for wakefulness in daylight, requiring rest when it is dark.
Hush, lay down your troubled mind
The day has vanished and left us behind
And the wind – whispering soft lullabies
Will soothe – so close your weary eyes
Sleep, angels will watch over you
And soon beautiful dreams will come true
Can you feel spirits embracing your soul
So dream while secrets of darkness unfold
Hayley Westenra sings about the light on her album, Odyssey. Written by Rolf U. Lovland and Fionnual Sherry, the song“Prayer” reminds us to seek light when darkness threatens to usurp our spirit.
Whether you believe in the light of angels, the cosmic light of our sun, or the light of our own human spirit, we were meant to embrace the light, and share it with others.
Let your arms enfold us
Through the dark of night
Will your angels hold us
Till we see the light
Here’s wishing the New Year offers all the light you need to keep you warm, and to find your way home should you get lost.