Greetings on 13th Night — Dawn — Day of Christmas.
This last day of the Festival is named as Feast of The Epiphany. And today is both the final day of Christmas and the first day of the Epiphany Season.
As Omega, today concludes the Festival. Both Celts and Christians in the Northern Hemisphere have been marking the return of radiance since the deepest dark of the Winter Solstice.
Today nature gives us an embodied expression of a great truth — that the deepest dark in our personal and collective lives will at some point give way to fresh radiance.
If today, you do not know that fresh radiance in your life — no worries. Celebrate the promise that your personal time of deep darkness will ultimately be the birthing soil of fresh radiance.
Throughout Christian history, three stories have been used to mark this great feast. The one we are most accustomed to is the arrival of the Magi to adore the Christ-child. The other two accounts are Jesus receiving a mikvah bath in the Jordan, and water become wine at the Wedding in Cana.
What is common to the three stories is that radiance is made manifest. Today’s feast is not the literal arrival of Magi but a celebration of nature’s truth (radiance increases) and an inner truth — each time of deep darkness will give way to fresh radiance.
Today is also Alpha (beginning day) as it marks the opening of the Epiphany Season that extends from today to the start of Lent. We may know the Epiphany Season under it’s more cultural names like “Mardi Gras” or “Carnival.”
The spiritual season of Epiphany lies beneath those cultural expressions. This year there are 7 weeks until Lent opens. In this time, we reflect on our crowns — we reflect on our royal nature.
As we place the color of our nation’s royal family (if our country has one) around our home and prepare to eat King or Queen Cakes — these outer objects help us taste our true and royal inner nature.
If your Tree is still up — consider leaving it up til a few days before Lent. The ancient practice was to remove the Christmas ornaments and replace them with Royal, Radiant Epiphany ornaments. In this way the Tree continues as a meditation practice, carrying us across this time of Royal remembrance.
In New Orleans there is the saying, “let the good times roll.” In my house today — Mardi Gras music will be play with gusto. I particularly like the Mardi Gras song, “The Second Line.”
Regardless of your choices, let us play and enjoy the truth of who we are: each of us is a royal and gifted person. Put on your metaphoric crown and let the good times roll.
Blessed Holy 13th Day. Celebrate Fresh Radiance!
Today, the Magi arrive, bringing gifts for The Christ within you.
Today, the Holy One says, “You are my daughter/my son. You are beloved.”
Today you celebrate the promise that the water of sustenance will become an elixir of wine.
On Epiphany, we remember that our life is made for joy!
And as we end this journey of The 13 Days of Christmas — join me tomorrow on this page for a special invitation.