Rewilding my Calendar
January, 2023 - Join me in the season of Epiphany
January 11th, 25th, February 8th, 2023. On-line Book Discussion - 9-10 am Central; 10-11 am ET . Register separately and more info here. Hosted by Our Lady of the Prairies Retreat. Info and Registration here: www.carolkilby.com/events
January 17th, stories, ritual, and conversation - REWILDING OUR STORY 7 pm – 9 pm ET, Bring YOUR story- When and where has Earth re-wilded you! click here Hosted by the Guild for Spiritual Guidance,
February 15. What Writing the Evolutionary Dance had to teach me! Wednesday Evening 6-8 pm Central. 7 - 9 pm ET. Hosted by Our Lady of the Prairies Retreat. Info and Registration here: www.carolkilby.com/events
“Look how light it is even at 4:35 in the afternoon.” In my partner’s delighted observation of the turning times was the faintest echo of our Germanic ancestors’ winter festivals. Then, the “Wild Nights’ were spent in revelry and feasting to welcome the lengthening days and return of life to the land. Walking off our own indulgences at the Bakery and Brunch on Queen Street, I had an epiphany.
Now, to those born and bred in the Christian briar patch, epiphany means manifestation of the divine! As the fantastical story goes, Magi, following a “Star of wonder, star of night, star of ancient beauty bright” that stopped right over a Bethlehem stable, brought big news, a revelation! Into a dark time of political imperialism, a long-awaited prince of peace, God in human form, was born. No small revelation, the holy had come as a carpenter’s infant in a manger of hay. January 6th, the 12th day of Christmas, is the Feast of, and the 1st day of the season of, Epiphany on the Christian calendar.
My insight, aha, evolution of consciousness, other ways of understanding an epiphany, was this. There have always been holi-days for those who pay attention to the ecological calendar.
Light in the darkness of winter! This is the promise of the crone winter goddesses. Baba Yaga, Frau Holda, Befana, and Holle to mention a few. Many of their names being derivative of words for bright, luminous, glorious, they embody the Divine Mother, the shining one.
Somewhere, while I stood stilled in Toronto, children were preparing cookies in the shape of a star, the sign of the goddess. They would leave them out in hopes on her visit she would leave blessings for the new year. Light in Winter’s darkness. It’s the gift, the promise, and ever a part of the Earth story.
Walking into 2023, another year of weird weathers, global warming, and pandemic, I had this aha. Be it the Christian-calendar of holy days or national calendars of stat-holidays, these have been human-centric. Excluding the more-than-human world, they have and still contribute to the ecological crisis.
But then, it hit me. This awareness, eco-spirituality, Gaian religions, and a whole calendar of Earth-centred observances are, in our time, emerging. In fact, 2023 is the U.N. International Year of Millets. There are 65 Celebratory Environmental Holidays. The epiphany? Our We are evolving because the light has come in the very darkness we fear.
So, what! This from a woman in a Book Discussion on the Evolutionary Dancer. What difference does it all make? Well, just as the biblical story ended, “and the magi went home another way,” my epiphanies show me there is an alternative path forward.
First, it means paying attention to the ecological calendar. 2023, I realize, is time for Rewilding Our Story, rewilding rituals, rewilding my attention to the Earth’s planetary dance with our Daystar.
It doesn’t mean I forget my tradition’s season of epiphany when we celebrate that even the humblest incarnate the divine light and response ability to follow the golden rule by which you and I can cocreate an age of global unity.
It also mean following the brilliance of Father Thomas Berry. Everything in the cosmos, he noted to be some mode of celebration. The Blue Spruce on my walk, the fox crossing my lawn with a squirrel supper, the Cardinal in the Cedar, the full Wolf Moon, the lilt of the Hindi conversation behind me, all some sacred celebration of novelty.
“Look how light it is at 4:37 in the afternoon.” Why grumble at the grey skies when I can marvel that the amount of daylight will be growing by two minutes a day mid-month. The first revelation, Father Berry loved to say was creation itself. Now that’s an epiphany that makes every day a holi-day.
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