a sacred dark within the light

I have been reminded today of how, in midwinter, we find the light in the deepest heart of the darkness. Much is written of this; much worship is given to the child of light, the sun, summer, son.

And if we want to embrace balance in our lives and our souls, we must look too for the dark at the heart of the light. Dark does not mean bad, misfortune, sorrow, ruin. It is the inner place of dreams, repair, and growth. Dark at night allows the healing and reworking of all that tangles and fractures through the day, in the light.

We so enthusiastically and pretty much exclusively celebrate the light, it seems no wonder to me that people everywhere are tired, harried, hungry for peace. They complain that the days are not long enough ... that winter must come ... that they are cold or weary of the long season of night. But if we don't honour the dark, how will we get the inner reconciliation we need?

In the olden times, people worked hard all summer and rested through the winter months. We have discarded this natural pattern so that we can use every available hour to produce, produce, consume. We make false light so we can keep on working. To stop, and turn off the lights, and let your breath exhale into the night, would be to say, I have enough.

On solstice eve, lying in bed around midnight, I felt so cold it was as if winter had come again. I had to put on a cardigan and curl up tight, or else I could not sleep. What a blessing it was, a reminder that, even in the fierce and blazing grip of the Sun's power, I will still be given the opportunity to seek warmth and comfort.

Life is medicine. Not just the trees and minerals, ground into powders that we can swallow when we're sick, but the light that provides us with energy, and the dark that heals, the water that quenches our thirst and the earth that feeds us. We have enough. There's something deeply sacred in that for me. We are given all that we need, and it's enough, and because it's enough, we can still feel the peace that comes from a hushed dark space of emptiness.

And yet we fill ourselves up with a gluttony for things and more things, light and more light, until we are stuffed, sick, antagonistic, exhausted. If we keep filling ourselves with things, there will be nowhere left in us for the breath of the Divine to whisper love, to blow a change in our lives, to lift us up.


  1. I think you have just explained beautifully why I love the dark so much. There is something about Winter that welcomes us, wraps us in its warm dark blanket. And of course there is a quiet not found anywhere else.

  2. Sarah, this is so gorgeous. I have been trying to leave a comment on your blog now for a while, for some reason it has failed every time, so fingers crossed this time it will work. Thank you so much for sharing your thoughts this midwinter/summer with us. I feel that I have a kindred spirit in you on the opposite side of the planet; your soulfulness and your free spirit soars and it is a joyful thing to witness. I also home school my two children. Your writing is so beautiful and deeply resonates with me on, I think, an otherworldly level. I have a craving to read everything you have written so I will be stopping by your book page very soon to hopefully download some of your work from there,

    in the blessing of deepness, both in the light and in the dark
    and the turning of the wheel,

  3. Thank you Louisa. I'm sorry for your trouble with commenting, I shall have to look into that.

    It's lovely to meet you, I am so glad I found your very beautiful weblog.

  4. Oh, I think it was a problem at my end actually, and I was trying to comment whilst using my iPhone, because I needed to be logged into my wordpress account in order for my site's link to come up and I just got frustrated with it .... iPhone's are wonderful but sometimes getting stuff done in such a small space can be too much for me - I prefer wider spaces and horizons ;-)