Many people are happy to see 2016 in the rearview mirror. But 2017 is not likely to be any better for us personally, unless we take matters into our hands/hearts/minds to manifest intentions for the New Year. Those intentions may be choosing new habits, deciding to put more adventure, kindness, patience (fill in the word that fits YOU) in your life, or adopting new attitudes. Note the verbs – intention setting requires action.
We’ve had several special opportunities to embed these intentions. There was, of course, the Solstice. Here’s what Anita, my dear friend and yoga teacher, sent out.
Tomorrow we celebrate Winter Solstice here in the Northern Hemisphere. It is a time for honoring the birth of a New Year and manifesting our dreams or visions for the year ahead. Solstice is a magical, contemplative time on the darkest day of the year. The darkness allows time for spiritual reconnection and rituals. Solstice is a time to celebrate renewal, plant seeds for rebirth, and set those intentions to the coming light ahead.
When darkness happens, we are forced to look within and change our course or direction. Solstice is the perfect time of year to create a ritual, one that asks us to tune in deeply, listen to our intuition and trust that inner voice that is guiding us to change or manifesting. We can use the Solstice as a time for deep meditation to reflect on what has been working in our lives, what has not and where to make changes.
I wanted to share some ideas, for making your own Solstice ritual. Invite light in your life for the coming year!
- Find a cozy quiet space in your house to set your altar table. Grab a warm tea and notebook.
- Set six tea lights in a circle on that table. This is where you will place your intentions.
- I like to invoke my contemplative time with a mantra. A simple mantra for manifesting is “Sa Ta Na Ma” that we have been doing in class. This mantra allows the creative energy to flow and creates changes in your reality. Use the mantra with music and chant along with it to create a sacred energy feeling. Either way, close your eyes and repeat the mantra for at least eleven rounds, visualizing a clearing of energy.
- Now take time to contemplate what you want to change or manifest in the New Year ahead. Let your inner voice guide you. After you write these down, hold them in your hand and infuse them with love and trust.
- Place those written intentions in the circle of light, close your eyes and visualize the feeling of them manifesting. Invite a sense of calm and belief in yourself as you are setting those intentions into the universe.
- Bring your hands to your heart and give gratitude for the universal guidance you received and allow the universe to support your dreams. Breathe and release through your exhales, the movie behind your eyelids (the story you continually tell yourself).
I wish all of you a magical Solstice celebration filled with courage for change and celebration for those visions in your heart! – Anita
Anita always finds ways to inspire me. This ritual certainly did. But if this is not your cup of tea, make up a different one.
Just because you didn’t do this on Solstice doesn’t mean it’s too late to set new intentions. Last week was also the new moon, a time of setting intentions for the next month. So Dianne held a New Moon, New Year gathering where we wrote out our intentions for the next month and the New Year (Dianne always thinks expansively). We planned to burn them in her fire pit, but it was raining. I saved mine and will either burn or plant them as soon as the weather dries out a bit. During this gathering I added verbs to my intentions.
Then there’s the traditional opportunity of New Year’s Eve. I planned to attend the Hongwanji Temple’s New Year’s celebration with meditation (an opportunity to reflect on intentions), incense burning, temple bell ringing and of course, the fireworks display. But when the rain picked up, I opted for spending time with my daughters at home.
While I, and perhaps you, may have missed a couple of these special intention setting opportunities, there’s still plenty of time.
It’s one thing to set intentions and another to manifest them. So I am again doing the 30 Day Project through Notes from the Universe to cement this year’s intentions. It takes 28 days to create a new habit, so doing this 5-to-10-minute-a-day project is perfect timing. Try it.
There is never a bad day or time to set intentions for one’s potential. Just do it.
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