When was the last time you woke up in the morning early enough to watch the sun rise?
There was a time when all the people knew the songs of life, the songs of the seasons, the songs of the earth and moon and sun.
How long has it been since you sang the sun up? What song would you sing to bring her back each morning?
How do you experience the sun? Is it male? Is it female?
Some of the Northern European tribes spoke about the sun as being female. They called her Sunna, the bringer of life and light, warmth and new growth. Only Sunna could melt the ice of winter. She was pulled across the sky each day in a chariot drawn by horses, Alsvith whose name means All Swift and Arvak whose name means Early Waker. She was chased by the wolf Skoll who sometimes came so close he took a bite out of her.
In the very far north they knew her through the long summers when the sky never darkened and through the long winters when the sky was never light.
Our ancestors in the north had a relationship with the sun that was different from people who came to conquer, a relationship different from the armies of Romans and the monotheistic priests who brought with them a religion born in the desert.
Are we perhaps the first culture to fear the sun, to consider her our enemy? We shield ourselves from her in a strange and fanatic way. We smear our faces and bodies with sunscreen and believe we can spend long hours in her presence without being affected by her. We believe we can override our body’s natural warning system and suffer no harm. We don’t really know the damage caused by sunscreen.
We shield our eyes from her, filtering her light through dark glass, forgetting that it’s vital to our health and well being for the full spectrum of her light to enter our bodies through our eyes. What parts of sunlight are we missing when we wear sunglasses?
We no longer honor the sun. We’ve forgotten her sacred symbols and we’ve forgotten her fair name. We’ve forgotten her rituals and her songs. And few of us remember to welcome her back at winter solstice. There are too many who think only of the birth of a male child who is son to a sky god.
What makes us so sure that she will always rise again? Our ancestors were not so smug.
How is it that in our search for enlightenment we have forgotten to honor the sun?
How is it that in our arrogance we have forgotten that she who gives us light can also blind us?
Before the advent of clocks, people knew what time it was by knowing where the sun was in relationship to features of the landscape. You would have to live in a place a long time to learn where the sun would be at a certain time of day at a certain time of year. This is very different from the arbitrary time determined by clocks that doesn't relate to anything. Forming a relationship with Sowelo can strengthen your relationship with the sun and that will shift your relationship with time.
Do you ever wonder where she goes at night?
What do you see at sunset?
Does she disappear into the earth?
Does she sink down into the ocean?
Who takes care of her and guards her while she's away?
Have you ever dared to follow?
Have you ever asked her in the morning where she’s been all night? Or why she stays away longer in the winter than she does in the summer?
When Sowelo comes to you, what questions might you ask about the sun?