This is a lovely moment. The darkest day of the darkest week of the year in the northern hemisphere.
It is the moment before the balance shifts and light begins to overtake darkness.
On the winter solstice, the rhythm of the sun pauses as it changes direction from decrease to increase.
If we pay attention, we, too, can’t help but pause.
This darkest day of the darkest week beckons us to pause.
What does any great athlete do before they…
…. dive into the water
…. throw the discus
…. grab the rings
What are they thinking about?
Nothing — absolutely nothing.
Shabbat means stop, cease. That’s what this week beckons us to do.
Just stop and be.
Wait a moment before you think about goals for the new year.
Go a little more slowly. Be a little gentler.
In a moment the darkness will begin to recede and light will begin to increase. Hope and desire will increase. We’ll reflect on the past and set goals to guide us forward.
But first, take a moment to pause before you plan.
This is the special moment of between – the moment that separates what was from what can be.
This is my annual tribute to the winter solstice. I hope you can take some time between the festivities of the holidays to relax, reflect, and think about nothing.