This is a guest post by my friend Cynthia Rosi. Because February has been such a challenge for us living here in the northern United States, I thought many of us would benefit from her wisdom:
If you can’t sleep, if your dreams are continuous and crazy, if you feel like you’ve put in a hard day’s work at night — that’s par for the course in February.
There’s something very sleepy, almost stagnant, about the lack of light in the northern hemisphere and the cold, rainy, snowy weather. But under the surface it’s all churned up. As the subconscious cleanses itself, up come the old hurts and regrets and confusing emotions.
Most people in the Northern Hemisphere are happy around the time of the Summer Solstice. The days are long and, if you’re not in the desert, the earth is green.
Beauty, fruits and vegetables abound. “Fun in the sun” is an oft-used phrase.
But how can we go deeper on this longest of days?
This is the first of four posts leading up to St. Patrick’s Day in celebration of all things Irish.
One of the ways Christianity wove its way into the hearts and minds of the original peoples was by adopting their ancient gods, goddesses and festivals in order to more easily convert them without bloodshed.
For example, the evidence is that Jesus Christ was born in the spring, but our pre-Christian ancestors were already celebrating the birth of a wondrous male child, born of a virgin, around the time of the Winter Solstice, so it made sense to decree this as the time of birth of Christ. It made for easy conversion.
Christianity also incorporated most of the significant aspects of Mithra, son of the Persian sun God, who died at the spring equinox, heralding the time of Easter.
So many Christian holidays parallel those of our ancestors that it can be hard to tell where one begins and the other ends. The same can be said of the saints.