“Ralph Waldo Emerson once asked what we would do if the stars only came out once every thousand years.
The world would become religious overnight.
We would be ecstatic, delirious, made rapturous by the glory…
Instead the stars come out every night… and we watch television.” ~ Paul HawkenI love the winter solstice.
Not only because it signals the coming light and longer days.
Certain beauties, vistas, and insights glow brighter the darker it is.
There is something powerful to behold about ‘the longest night of the year’,
and the potency and majesty of night itself.
In fact, my favorite sleep doctor and wisdom teacher, Rubin Naiman
believes that the best sleep medicine is night itself –
to nourish depth and quality of sleep,
we must re-establish a personal relationship with the night sky and with darkness.
Much like many of the modern foods available to eat,
we are overexposed and undernourished –
too much junk light, not enough natural or naturally timed light.
‘When we step intentionally into a dark space,
allowing our worldly eyes to rest and our inner eye to open,
our inner vision gradually acclimates
to the delicate glow that backlights the night,
revealing sacred mysteries in the shadows’ ~ Dr. Rubin Naiman
In other words, we all have the capacity for a kind of x-ray vision,
a way of seeing in the dark that is starving to be nurtured.
It’s like any muscle – to build it, we need to develop it.
What are some ways you might embrace the opportunity
to bring deeper ‘night-mindfulness’ into this winter season?
Besides unplugging altogether,
one tool you can download for free,
to mediate the harmful effects of blue light
coming from your computer and other digital devices,
is the wonderful application, F.lux
F.lux will adjust the light of your screen to mirror the natural light/dark cycles of the day.
So much better for your eyes (and body/mind/soul in general!) at night.