As we are at the peak of the dark time of the year, my family has taken to spending our time experiencing stories. This is, of course, a time honored tradition. Storytelling is not just entainment; it is a metaphoric light in the darkness. Storytelling both has and has not changed in eons; movies are simply the most modern way to tell a story. Tonight, on Midwinter Eve, we are watching "Rise of the Guardians".
We watched it for Winter Solstice the year it was released in a near empty theater. It so captured our imaginations that it has been incorporated into our holiday celebrations. The lessons in this story are so important and so beautiful. In the film, Santa Claus beings wonder to the world. The Easter Bunny is the embodiment of hope. The Tooth Fairy guards those memories that define who we are so that when we forget, she can remind us. Jack Frost is fun, and the Sandman guards our dreams. They do these jobs under the guidance of the Man in the Moon, who gave all the children of the world a night light to guard against the fear the Pitch Black rules with.
Tonight, I am reminded that in the dark and cold and miserable times of every life, dreams and hope and wonder are so important to nourish and keep close. Tiny sparks of these light making emotions can defeat the illusion of darkness caused by fear.
As terrible as fear and depression are, as capable as they are of absorbing the light in our lives, every time we light a candle, sirt around a blazing hearth with our loved ones, feast in the lean times, or hold tight to hope and wonder and fun and dreams even when everything seems awful, we are own hero. Not only are we saving ourselves, we are lighting the way for other souls who struggle against darkness. Light your candles, whisper stories of hope in the dark, and turn back the darkness. Happy Winter Solstice!