Sunday, 21 December 2008

Standing Still

Today is the day the sun stands still, at the southernmost point in its journey across the horizon. In my area of Alberta, the sun will rise today at 8:48 a.m., with the precise time of the solstice being 5: 04 a.m. Today we will have just 7 hours and 27 minutes of daylight. I like the winter solstice. It means we've made it through the longest darkness and things will start to get lighter again.

But this year I think I will appreciate the stillness most of all. For a few days before and after the solstice, the sun appears to rise from the same spot on the horizon every day. Things slow down, and seemingly come to a halt for a little while, at least from the point of view of we humans standing on the earth and looking at the sun.

I think we could all use some of this stillness this year - I know I can. I need a respite from the onslaught of news, a hiatus from worry. A time to just appreciate that rest is good, that there is value in sitting still and in refraining from busy-ness. In a few days, the Sun will start rising northwards again, and there will be celebrations for the birth of a Son (coincidence? I don't think so.) But for now, for today, let's just be still and be thankful for a planet to live on and a distant star to keep us warm.

As for the challenges to come to move from darkness to light in this society, I'll think about that tomorrow.

Picture courtesy this website

11 comments:

Desiree said...

Beautiful post. Exactly what I was thinking. I'll be posting something similar shortly on my blog. I found you through "Learning to Step Lightly" and look forward to following your blog. :) A joyous Yule to you, and may the coming days be warm. :)

Peak Oil Hausfrau said...

Lovely picture. Things always seem more still when there's snow. Maybe we'll get some this year in Oklahoma.

Theresa said...

Hi Desiree - thanks for coming by and taking the time to comment. I'm looking forward to checking out your blog as well :)

Thanks Hausfrau - I forgot to post the link to the site where I got the picture - I've fixed that now. It is a lovely shot, isn't it? I hope you get a little snow there - it does make for a pretty scene that gives pause to stop and just look at it for a minute or two...

I'm heading outside soon (once it warms up to a mere -25C!) to take some pictures of the long shadows the sun makes on this the shortest day of the year....

SoapBoxTech said...

Beautiful post indeed. I had not realised that today is winter solstice so I am glad I came to read today's post. Thanks for the reminder, Theresa...seems I better get out to the farm today after all.

May we all have a peaceful seasonal rebirth and come into the New Year full of joy in life and opportunity, even in struggle.

Isle Dance said...

SO well said. Thank you for sharing this. :o)

::::wifemothermaniac:::: said...

no coincidence at all...
So on the dark night of the birth of the sun I wish you a merry winter solstice!

artbystrongheart said...

Beautiful. One of the few days I slept in. I missed the magical moment of the birth of a new season.

B said...

I've just discovered your blog through the Google Reader recommended blogs feature. We obviously share many interests and perspectives. Actually, I find it a little spooky - it seems we blog on all the same things.

I look forward to following your blog!

Bev

Theresa said...

Thanks SBT - I hope you were able to make it out to the farm...

IsleDance - thanks, glad you enjoyed it :)

WMM - thanks to you too :) I remember when I first found out about the co-incidence of those events, I was quite awestruck.

Artby - It would be neat to have an actual horizon to watch on those days, but I'm all surrounded by trees. That's not so bad though! I didn't get outside either at sunrise. It had gotten so so cold (-40) that our front door wouldn't even open from all the frost that had surrounded the door jamb.

Hi Bev - thanks for coming by and commenting - I will have to check out your blog too and see just how spookily similar we are...:)

ruralaspirations said...

What a lovely post. Thanks for sharing with us.

Theresa said...

Thanks RA - it was a good day :)