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The Darkness

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TobaccoFlower

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I was staying pretty strong through the Darkness this year, but it finally started to get to me after this week from hell. The snow is beautiful and the holidays are nice, but I am very susceptible to the Darkness' negativity. I believe I need to work on harnessing the Dark, and using it to process emotions and calm chaos - I do not know how to utilize the stillness of the Dark, only how to react with the absence of Light. I think some more outdoor activities will help me this winter... how can one connect to a season if one stays in the house, cooped up all winter? If anyone has suggestions on dealing with the Darkness in a positive way, I will gladly hear them!

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This post keeps popping into my head for some reason since I first read it yesterday.  But I don't have anything to offer that I feel is constructive to your situation.

 

All I can tell you is that, for me, it was all about not being afraid of it.  Of not giving the Darkness a good/bad connotation despite my "programming" from religion screaming that it was a scary evil beast that should be avoided at all costs.  Once I accepted it as merely 'being', the fear dissipated.  When the fear was shed, its useful qualities came to light.  I'm not saying that you feel or perceive it the same way, of course- just sharing my experience.

I hope you figure things out soon.  I believe that it's definitely one of the more confusing and challenging lessons on one's Path.

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I definitely feel anxious about the Darkness as it approaches. This year I have tried to take a stronger approach and it's working a bit, but I still am greatly affected by it. Perhaps I should do the darker workings I wish to do during this time....not only would the natural world emphasize my intent, but perhaps doing the workings will serve as an outlet? Also, bring Light INTO my home....

 

I found moving my furniture and such around greatly helped the energy from feeling stifled as the Light began to wear off from my home. It feels like stagnant. 

 

I have dealt with some of my own inner darkness this year, and I think it has helped strengthen me for the outer Darkness. I have come to peace with its heaviness and realized it is no heavier than Light, just different.... in a way, my problems from the Darkness come from within me, and not from the Dark itself.

 

Thank you for your comment. I need to embrace the beautiful balance of my Path more, instead of fearing the roller coaster ride.... logically I know this, but emotionally it is so easy for me to get tangled up in it! :\

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This entry really spoke to me bc this year has been very emotionally taxing for me and I have been kinda living inside my own head which just seems to amplifiy my emotional turmoil. I have a hard time dealing with winter I normally hibernate like a bear. Your words have given me some hope that thing can start to get better but it has to start with me internally. Thank you Ravenshaw for your words. And my best wishes to you and hope you can find some peace and happiness in your life.

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Thanks, hawk :) I wouldn't say I'm one to give advice on the subject, but dealing with the inner stuff does seem to ease some of the outer stuff...still smoothing out the rough edges though... Good luck to you! I hope your load lightens up

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I think that you have made a wonderful ally with your fire dancing.  Fire is what brings humans out of darkness and into light, and brings us so much more than that.  Perhaps you can gain some strength in the winter by using what you have learned from the fire element.  Just a thought.

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What sucks about winter spinning is that the chains get soooo cold during the spin that it becomes hard to control. However, I never thought of using fire in such a way, ironically.... I've been wanting to learn fire cupping (which would let fire serve as an aid to detoxify the body). Also, I can still do fire cup dances and fire body trailing pretty safely, and the fire would be more in direct contact with my body than if the chains were between us. Metal is a cold, water/earth being anyway...perhaps I just need to change my medium? Thank you for this suggestion, Caps!

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Oh i relate! I've developed a love/hate relationship with winter. Its not the funnest time of year, but i usually get a lot out of it. For me the stillness of winter has become a time to sink into, not to avoid or keep it seperate. Its not going anywhere so I try not to resist the kinds of things I become more aware of, the things that ache and the things I overlooked through the busier part of the year.   Every year I sort of go inward and reflect on the year and things I have learned and been through, there is usually something there to release, something to accept, something to start. Or some kind of love or reality check I need to pour into myself in order to heal, every year is a little different obviously. Recentering, Its time to make whole, a chance to rest and germinate for spring :).

 

But taking care of yourself is important too, it gets really easy to get stuck in a muddy rut. I agree that the fire dancing would be an awesome way to help deal with it, plus its just cool. I know a lot of poi people, and play around with practice poi, but im not good enough to spin with fire without becoming the fire haha.

 

Outdoor activity is also super helpful, its my favorite way to get happy when I've been grey for too long, a hike in some snowy hills or a walk by the river or a hotspring. Plus, doing that helps me learn about the landscape at different times of the year and keeps me aware of the life that is indeed still there just waiting for warmer weather like me, I used to just feel as though everything was just done and barren, buts its not quite the case. I really relate to feeling stagnant this time of year. Bringing some light in is also a good idea. I've lived in some places that didnt get enough indoor light to keep a houseplant alive, let alone keep my mind motivated. Now that i've moved I have collected so many plants the indoor light isnt enough anymore so Im planning on getting a couple sun lamps for them and for me. I think that could help too if one of your goals is making your home lighter to be in, I know it has helped me. Hell, I even buy flowers for myself to brighten the place up when I've been feeling stuck and it makes a bigger difference than i thought it would.

 

Another thing I do is drink teas or infusions of herbs that remind me of warmth and sun and energy. Sometimes that just means drinking teas from things I picked in the summer, or maybe drinking things because of how I felt when I collected them. Dandilion root with some kind of flower (chamomile or jasmine or roses or whatever) works pretty well, and I like rose hips for this because while its not really a summer thing, the flavor is like hibiscus and is pretty energizing. Dandilion root is also supposed to be detoxifying. I just like the earthy taste.

 

I dont really have ideas besides the ones mentioned already, but I wanted to let you know I relate and what works for me. Something about winter triggers a white knuckle approach to my own emotions and experiences which is hard when what I need is to let go a bit, to loosen my grip. It's in part due to restlessness, and in part because of the being put face to face with the things I avoided dealing with in stillness of winter when it is so much harder to distract yourself haha. It still has some sticky dark patches, but I dont stay stuck for as long anymore. I hope something i said is helpful, or at least you know you arent alone in your winter!

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No, Cailin, thank you very much for the novel! That's a very....dare I say, "yoga" approach to it? 

 

I wish we had hot springs around here...that would be sooooo nice right now.

 

Maybe I should take this time to strengthen my body, since the summer greatly strengthened my spiritual core.

 

I have noticed that flowers help a great deal, but being broke I do not buy them (wish I could!). It helps to keep my house plants going well, and to keep planting little things even in the winter (I know it's not great to start them in winter, but I felt the need to give it a try since the winter's been harsh already. The garlic I planted is growing a mile a minute despite the darkness!)

 

Your comment striking me as a "yoga" philosophical approach to winter actually gave me an idea. I remember once I did an "emotionally opening" yoga session and at the end of it, during svasana I got this great urge to cry and felt a lot of static, but relieved at the same time. Perhaps it's time to give it a try once again?

 

For anyone else who struggles with winter blues, I have noticed that my happy light helps quite a bit. It's annoying as hell to have it on but I do feel more awake and energized after a 20 minute session with it on.

 

Thanks again, Cailin!

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What sucks about winter spinning is that the chains get soooo cold during the spin that it becomes hard to control. However, I never thought of using fire in such a way, ironically.... I've been wanting to learn fire cupping (which would let fire serve as an aid to detoxify the body). Also, I can still do fire cup dances and fire body trailing pretty safely, and the fire would be more in direct contact with my body than if the chains were between us. Metal is a cold, water/earth being anyway...perhaps I just need to change my medium? Thank you for this suggestion, Caps!

====

:smile:

I was referring more to the spiritual aspects of Fire such as its strengths, behaviors, what secrets you learn from it etc. not just the physical balances you've learned when dancing and the literal warmth of it.  Even the dancing itself I'm sure can be internalized, the movements, the feeling you get from spinning without even lifting a hand.  I'm glad my suggestion may have helped you either way though.

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Ah I see, I misunderstood you. I do a bit of that, such as meditating with "sunlight" but have honestly never taken it beyond that.... Good idea, Caps :)

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