The darkest nights mask of polarity

This year’s Winter Solstice is a day later than usually expected, we tend to think of it as the 21st of December. The Solstice time actually changes every year and is not a fixed time or day. The moment of Winter Solstice is a moment depending on the sun as it rises, awakening us after the longest night of the year, the deepest of winter darkness. This year it meets us on Monday morning after that long dark Sunday night which coincides with the waxing of the new moon. The solstice is connected to the alignment of planets, creating a stillness, a pause, a moment in time when dreams if dreamt well can be nurtured into life before the next full moon..

the beginning as we journey to the drum and invite the spirit of the mask to show itself

the beginning as we journey to the drum and invite the spirit of the mask to show itself

Nestling into the darkness I feel it like a cloak that surrounds me, covering the wild of the nature around us, the time for going inward and rummaging in the dark for our creative juice, when seedlings and bulbs feed on the nourishment of the soil. A time for contemplation and pondering. I feel like hibernating and being much stiller than usual, listening to the wind and rain and watching the mists fall and rise, seeking out the place, the openings in the distant clouds, where the light will begin to shine, awakening the newness of the New Year. From over the horizon as the Grandfather awakens and pours forth that golden light across the landscapes.

And this year  the Solstice falls on the morning of my birth. It doesn’t always happen that way!  So it is a very dream filled solstice for me this time around, I wonder if it is likely to feel different for me? My 54th year here in this world.

I have been slowing right down these last few weeks after traveling so much and it’s been really good to just be at home being creative and spending  time with Ben and our Irish she-cat Kiara.

On the 12th I attended a beautiful ceremony with the dancers of the 3rd apprenticeship modules of the School of Movement Medicine, with Susannah and Ya’Acov Darling Khan. It was a deep ceremony, alive, yet mysterious and profound in a subtle way. I began in its subtlety to ask ‘why am I here?’ A very significant night to be asking that question! 9 days till my birthday, 9 gateways of contemplation, pondering on this question, to be in the dark. To feelintomy own roots and the journey from birth till now.

bringing to light what has been dreamt and journeyed with, the light becomes known

bringing to light what has been dreamt and journeyed with, the light becomes known

What came to me in ceremony, through a few particular dances, was ‘balance’ the meeting of polarities that create chaos, the rhythm, the engagement of the sensitive soul trying to emerge. I took all of this into my further dreaming and contemplation. 9 days, 9 gateways to create what was needed, to find the medicine and the answer to the question I was asking. A familiar question, a good one to ask now and again I find, particularly at this time of year.

And considering my birth date – it does not surprise me, the time where dark and light meet together. The polarities of shadow and all-seeing, the journey from the depths of darkness to the light of the morning’s eye.

During this time, Ben and I have been having our own small ceremony of creating the mask of our medicine man and woman. Journeying into those parts of us, rummaging in plaster-of-paris, paints and oddments of tools, fabrics, feather and fur. Listening to the drum beat as it weaves its magic and visions for us.

The masks begin to emerge, sharing into the light of day who they are. It’s an exciting process….

We continue with our daily chores and the work we are doing, those bits of administration, editing, setting up programs for next year and me some mentoring sessions with dear students and dancers on the path.

Yet the masks keep looking out at us awaiting their moments of completion. They speak to us, to our hearts and souls, questioning us…’why are you here?’

And we journey with the creative making and binding together. We take it slowly, ensuring we don’t rush in haste, the detail is too important for that.

We head into the Solstice, making way for the new and bringing out what feels really important for us to be sharing. The mask begins to show itself and that same polarity of dark and light begins to manifest, I see its face in the drum journey, it looks out at me and explains to me the significance of each artistic piece that I must create.

spiral eye

the eye that wanders inwards, into the journey where her animal frends and spirit guides awaken

The key moment of this winters Solstice will be just as the sun shines forth on Monday, December 22, I was born at 3 am so just beginning to open my eyes, meet my Mama and the midwife who nurtured me into life. It is that moment, of sunrise, that most experts believe was the most relevant at Stonehenge, so I am conscious of those druids of the English countryside, gathering as they have for decades, meeting under the mighty stones and ritualizing this moment. I know I am with them in spirit as I feel into the indigenous of our land and I feel that heritage stirring in my bones. Some of that history long gone but living in the spirit of wolves, wild cats, the elk and deer,  the fairy folk lying in the poetry of english soil and the rock and granite we walk upon. The pagan ceremonies, the witchcraft and ways of many crafts known and unknown. Hidden and unhidden, we walk our path.

In my journey I see the part I may have played, had I lived at that time many years ago. I like to feel into HER, her skin her bones, it would not have been an easy life for sure, for if I know myself well enough she did not walk in silken slippers and ivory gowns. For sure

paints and feathers, fur and fabric, amethyst and crystal, she is waking up!

paints and feathers, fur and fabric, amethyst and crystal, she is waking up!

she was the big booted female, trudging the earth and mud, visiting the hedgerows and the fire pit cauldrons. She went undercover mostly, hooded and silent for fear she might lose her tongue. The animals were her friends and the men in dark coats were cautious of hermakings.

SHE comes to life, her dark and her shadow, the spiral of her ye as it weaves with the medicine of snake into her very being, the wolf the owl and the white hare, acknowledged as her kin, her resource, her love of the wild. Solstice mask, the medicine woman of polarities.

SHE comes to life, her dark and her shadow, the spiral of her eye as it weaves with the medicine of snake into her very being, the wolf the owl and the white hare, acknowledged as her kin, her horse woman known as her companion – these her resource, her love of the wild her spirit guides and comrades. Solstice mask, the medicine woman of polarities.


And in this dark time I revisit her spirit, hiding away in our little hut amidst the natural surroundings, I will emerge for sure to celebrate, to dance in ceremony and to be witness to the prayers of mankind. And my mask will call out in pride and belonging to her rightful place, her medicine field and her ability to be fully in the world, no matter what she looks like, no matter what her prayer, no matter what her wild non-conformist spirit sings. Maybe I will meet you along the way, to share a creative time together, to dance and sound our voices, to play with some of the dark shadows that hold a mystery ready to be made known.

Blessings to you this Solstice, I wish you a fruitful and heart fulfilling New Year, I wish your creativity to flow and the honesty of your heart to meet with the honesty of many other hearts. Let us dance into that dark night together, dream our dreams steadily, remembering each moment, focusing on what is to become. I will see you on the other side as we celebrate the light and all that is ready to manifest itself…

Caroline x

Mask making and creativity…..Hollow Bone, Middle Earth Medicine Ways –

About Caroline Carey

Caroline is an English Grandmother and an aspiring crone~elder, an author of four books, a speaker and innovative and creative teacher, offering her work via workshops and gatherings online as well as internationally. By adapting the religious education insisted on by her family, she was able to recognise her own innate connection to God/Spirit and has been on a spiritual path since childhood. She is a champion of music, dance and poetry as healing tools since she was four years old and developed an innate understanding of the soul’s journey, a connection to physical embodiment through movement, theatre and the creative arts. Her work is harmonious with nature. Her journey has manifested as her own personal training into eldership and crone-hood, carrying the wisdom needed for stability and balance in individuals, relationships, families and communities. Mothering her six, now adult, children, gave Caroline the art of play, creativity, story-telling and opened up the deep surrender and unconditional love that motherhood can bestow. Caroline has trained in many modalities of dance, therapeutic and spiritual teacher trainings since 1986. She is a writer who has published her autobiography and four other books about her spiritual work. Her latest book, 'Middle Earth Wisdom' will be published soon. She lives in UK with her husband Ben Cole, a film-maker, a director who works with men’s initiation groups. They often offer work together, incorporating dance, presentation and film. Caroline is: A mother and grandmother A writer and poet A dancer A spiritual life coach A catalyst for change She is available to you for guidance
This entry was posted in alchemy in movement, caroline carey, ceremony, dance, dark night, elk and deer, english soil, fairys, healing, light, mask, movement medicine, pagan ceremonies, poetry, prose, ritual, shadow, shamanism, solstice, spirit, voice, wolves, women and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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