Merry Christmas – Ninth Day!
And yes, we’re still in the Season of Christmas. 

We’re all grateful to see last year come to an end and set it behind us.  It represents a year we hope won’t be repeated as feelings of fear and anxiety about the future come forth because of the pandemic and are brought into the New Year.

But, on this, the Ninth Day of Christmas, the second day in the new year, the ladies were dancing!    Could their dancing offer encouragement for the new year that has just begun to begin?    Might these dancing ladies encourage us to look beyond the negative feelings / thoughts which may have carried over from the year that’s just ended and dance through any residual anger, pain, worry, fear?

Nobel Prize winner, Samuel Beckett wrote: “Dance first. Think later. It’s the natural order.”   
The dancing ladies on this the Ninth Day of Christmas offer a suggestion … dance!

But how can we do that when most of us are staying at home most of the time – unable to dance with others, unable to join in dance or Zumba classes, unable to dance at weddings or parties … or …?

We can dance with our self … in the kitchen, in the entrance to our home, in the garage, in the Studio, in the bedroom … even dance in our imagination.  Wherever.  However.  Whenever.  Able-bodied, in a wheelchair, in bed, we can dance!   And it’s not only great exercise.  When our body or mind is rigid, so too is our spirit. 

Dancing stimulates the release of endorphins which can reduce physical, emotional and/or spiritual pain and give a natural high, increasing metabolism and blood flow.  As we experience the joy of the moment, we connect to our spirit.   There it is … “dance is a spiritual connection!”

Let’s let the ladies of the Ninth Day of Christmas encourage us to “Dance first.  Think later” as the New Year unfolds.   And, may these words by Irish author, priest, poet and Hegelian philosopher known for popularizing Celtic spirituality, bless your new year with his “Beannacht” poem:

Beannacht
On the day when
The weight deadens
On your shoulders
And you stumble,
May the clay dance
To balance you.

And when your eyes
Freeze behind
The grey window
And the ghost of loss
Gets in to you,
May a flock of colours,
Indigo, red, green,
And azure blue,
Come to awaken in you
A meadow of delight.

When the canvas frays
In the currach of thought
And a stain of ocean
Blackens beneath you,
May there come across the waters
A path of yellow moonlight
To bring you safely home.

May the nourishment of the earth be yours,
May the clarity of light be yours,
May the fluency of the ocean be yours,
May the protection of the ancestors be yours.

And so may a slow
Wind work these words
Of love around you,
An invisible cloak
To mind your life.
<Author: John O’Donohue>
[Note: “Beannacht” is the Gaelic word for “blessing” and a “currach” is a large boat used on the west coast of Ireland].

Happy Ninth Day of Christmas!

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The Soulistry Christmas series is published each day during the Season of Christmas up to Epiphany and along with other Soulistry reflections can be found at www.soulistry.com/blog   and  www.facebook.com/groups/soulistry
www.facebook.com/groups/soulistrychurchyear

Christmas Day began the Season of Christmas in the Christian tradition, offering a lovely stretch of time to reflect, enjoy, delight in, and consider how we can bring a little bit of Christmas into our life and the lives of others every day.

May the Twelve Days of Christmas be a reminder that Christmas isn’t just “one day.” The Spirit of Christmas can continue to be alive every day – even beyond the Season of Christmas.   🙂 

© June Maffin
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