Once upon a time, our days were rich with rites of passage.
Withwomen gathered to anoint newborns.
Ministers laid hands on foreheads to welcome confirmation classes to the community.
Mayors cracked bottles on the helms of ships.
Funerals held familiar phrases to help us say goodbye.
Our world was once ripe with ritual. Everyone knew what the gestures meant, what the symbols were, why we were gathered.
To send someone forth.
To ask for protection.
To cover with kindness.
To say “Yes, you belong with us. Let us be a people.”
It’s lonely out there now, in this independent world. Our post-church cultureÂ has left us a little bereft. There are few who know the ways we might anoint our children, witness our vows, bless our journeys, ordain us to the work we are called to do.
I suspect that you are feeling the absence of this, somewhere in your marrow–where your ancestory lives. It’s that little bit of let- down when a Really Big Event fails to mean as much as you had hoped. It’s the nervous feeling that things are flying by you too fast. It’s the tears that come up when you feel invisible, unseen.
ThereÂ are reasons whyÂ all cultures have rites of passage — and ours are wearing a little thin. As individuals, and as communities we feel this absence — even if we cannot name it. And when these things are returned to us, we recognize it as Coming Home.
I’d like to rebuilding those things with you. StartingÂ with bringing back the practice of blessings.
Blessing surgeries, and studio openings,
first days at school, and last days before retirement.
(Holy, Holy, Holy.)
And I’d like to start, right now in the new year with you.
What do you need in 2014. What word is your guide? What wish is demanding our attention? What hope is in your heart? I’m writing blessings for whatever you most long for this year.
To help you name your deepest desires, in metaphor and poetry.
To call you out and give you and emboldened charge.
Quite simply, to kiss you and say, “Yes, this can be so.”
(That is what the amen is, is it not? May it be so. May it be so.)
I hope you will share your word of the year with me, your hope, your desire. So I can hold it gentle in my heart.
I hope you’ll let me write you a bespoke blessing (just for you.)
And above all, I hope you’ll find the little rituals your marrow is calling forth.
What about you, my magpie?
Are you ready to receive what you desire?
Can you take a risk andÂ try something new?Â (unfamiliar yet as old as bones.)
Will you say yes and amen to the blessing being extended towards you (from me, and from all the kismet and wonderful signs the universe has to show you?)
I think you are.
I know you can.
I hope you will.
P.s. Please share your word of the year with me in the comments or via email, so I can hold a little space for you and your new year. And if you would like a customized blessing, I have a fewÂ Bespoke Blessing bundles here. (Thanks, you.)