Teneice Durrant, creator of Tarot with Ten, will mark each full moon with a tarot reading, ritual for releasing creative blocks, and writing exercise. Writers, prepare for a new year.
The last full moon of 2022 is December 8, and the Winter Solstice, the shortest day of the year, is December 21. As we draw near the end of another calendar year, I’d like to encourage you to take some time to release whatever you don’t want to take into the new year, as a full moon ritual, a recognition of the solstice, or new year’s resolution, or however else you see this intentionality fitting into your holiday celebrations.
I love a good candle ritual, and it seems appropriate that on the longest night of the year, we offer up our intentions on a flame.
A ritual for writers
The best way to release whatever you don’t want to take into a new year is to focus on what you actually do want. Filling your thoughts and your mouth with positive, gratitude-filled affirmations leaves no space for negative thoughts about yourself. To do this ritual, you’ll need a bright orange candle and a safe space to let it burn all the way down. We want to use orange because it represents the sun, enduring light, success, and prosperity. As we face the cold, dark winter we want to carry this light with us.
You can make this ritual as simple or elaborate as you like. Personally, I like to start with a bath or shower and scrub my crown with Epsom salts. I also like to scrub my shoulders and arms and visualize any burdens or baggage being whisked away. If a salt scrub isn’t for you, you can just skip right to the candle work.
You’ll want to start this ritual around the time the sun goes down, as this is when the longest night of the year begins. You’ll need your orange candle and a sewing needle or pin. Facing the sunset, hold the candle in your hands and focus on the words you want to take forward into the new year. Think of the positive characteristics you hope to embody: use “courage” or “self-confidence” instead of “not being afraid.” Use “prosperous” or “abundant” in place of “not worried about money.” Pick as many of these positive words as you like; your year can contain multitudes of good things. Some suggestions: Joy, abundance, quality, comfort, confidence, beauty, success, clarity, courage. Scratch these words into your candle, allowing your body to vibrate with the energy of the words. Let your whole body feel “joy.” Stand in a power pose as you carve “confident.” Roar like a lion as you carve “courage.” There’s no wrong way to imbue your candle with intentions as long as you are staying positive.
When you are finished carving words with your needle, set the needle aside and prepare your fire-proof vessel. If possible, stand barefoot on the ground for as long as possible (it’s cold here in Ohio, so only a few moments is necessary). Feel the ground press up into your feet and give thanks for the long night and the return of daylight. Say the words you have carved out loud and light the candle. (You can return inside at this point.) Place your fire-proof vessel near a west-facing window and let the sun of the shortest day of the year set on your candle. Give thanks for the good things in your life, even if it is just that you woke up this morning. Let the candle burn until it extinguishes itself. If it burns all the way down, give thanks for the ancestors that have heard your ritual. If it goes out before it burns all the way down, take note of which words are still visible on the candle. This is a message from your ancestors and guides to focus on those qualities in the new year. Do you not believe you deserve those things? Are you unsure of where to start? Make the unburned words your mantra for the new year.
I hope this ritual helps you focus on what is truly important for the New Year, and release the noise and negativity.
New for 2023
Thank you for joining me for what will be my last Write and Release post. It’s been such a joy to write these posts over the last 18 months. I hope that they will help or inspire you for years to come. If you enjoyed these posts, I hope you will join me as I begin a new series for the Center blog in 2023, On Deck with Ten. These posts will be monthly readings from my various tarot and oracle card decks, accompanied by writing prompts and exercises on how to use the images that arise in the readings to inspire storytelling.
Take care and have a blessed Winter Solstice and holiday season.
YouTube Tarot with Ten
What did you think of Teneice's offering for this month? Will you try the exercise and see where your writing takes you? Share with us in the comments.
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