I remember learning about Yule as a child, being particularly interested in the tradition of burning a Yule log. My mother read to me stories of 17th century Europeans burning a massive log in honor of winter solstice and as a symbol of hope and celebration for the return of the sun. 

This year as I center my heart and ponder what this season means to me, the celebration of burning the Yule log strikes a cord. In the midst of the darkest day of the year we find a celebration. I honor the darkness that covers the earth just as I honor the darkness that touches my heart. How perfectly aligned this tradition is with my own personal practice of burning and renewing energy. In the midst of the darkest of days I celebrate life and the return to light. 

The sun holds a special place in my heart, as I am sure is somewhat of a universal sentiment. Still I consider my relationship with the sun to be quite passionate and firey. My love for the sun and its warmth has often led me to believe that on the flip side I disdain the darkness and the cold. In fact I think this has been faulty logic on my part. When I view this season as a time to find warmth in the burning flames of a Yule log, incense, candles, flower, sage, or burning of ones choice I find hope in the light of the flames. I experience the fullness of life in both the light and the dark. 

Hope remains: the sun will return again. The days will become longer. The light will be extended and this I am anticipating with joy. While I am here, in the Yule season, I focus on gratitude for all things. I am grateful for both the light and the dark. I am grateful for the balance that Earth maintains in order to sustain life. I am grateful for the light and the dark that resides in my heart, for in embracing the yin and the yang of experience I am able to fully embrace and love myself. ❤️