In the Southern Hemisphere, where I am at the moment, Tuesday is the Winter Solstice. Yes, it’s Yule here in Australia and I’m very cold and want to hibernate under my blankets and not come out until I stop getting little snowflakes in my weather forecast. I know the snowflakes are just frost – we don’t get snow – but it’s still cold is what I’m saying.
That’s why Yule is smack-bang in the middle of winter. It’s a chance to celebrate life in a season that would have been a struggle, celebrate light in the darkness and just celebrate generally so grumpy people like me would have to get out from under their hibernation blanket fort.
Traditionally during the Winter Solstice we said goodbye to the winter and welcomed the summer, as the days started lengthening again. But in the Celtic tradition, Yule also marked the birthday of the Earth.
So, on her birthday, it seemed a good time to write about a few ways to connect to her energy.
Earth Energy is, just as it sounds, energy that comes from the Earth. When learning energetic healing we learn *not* to give the people we’re healing our own energy. Instead we channel energy from either the Divine, through the Crown Chakra, or from the Earth, through the Base Chakra.
Earth Energy is more grounding than Divine Energy. It makes you feel solid and connected not only to the Earth but to all other things living their lives on her.
I find Earth Energy easier to connect to, and although that’s not true of everyone, it’s important to remember that the Earth is our Mother. I mean, yes, the Earth is a planet on which we live, but spiritually? The Earth nurtures us. It provides us with all our food and water. Everything we have – food, petrol, water, shelter – has originally come from the Earth. Even things like plastic, the original building blocks came from the Earth before they were changed in a lab.
So with the Earth trying to nurture us, her energy can be easier to tap into. It’s also something we’re more familiar with – there aren’t many people who haven’t wiggled their toes in wet sand or dug in dirt as a child (or an adult – no judgment!) – so we have all experienced her energy already.
So, here are four ways to connect more consciously to her energy.
You may have done something like this in school, where you pretend to be a tree. I remember my teacher saying ‘feel the roots’ and that’s pretty much where my advice is coming from as well.
So, sit or stand, doesn’t matter which, and feel yourself become a tree. For this exercise you want to focus on your roots. Feel them grow out of your feet or bottom (it’s less weird when you try it), depending on if you’re sitting or standing, and sink into the earth below. Don’t worry, the roots can go through carpet and concrete if need be.
You may notice yourself growing upwards as well, but focus on the roots and begin to feel them bringing energy in to you. Trees get nutrients direct from the soil and in this way you can as well. It may feel tingly or warm, it may not feel like anything in particular. Either way, concentrate on the way the energy creeps up into your body.
Once you feel full of energy, sit and absorb it for a few minutes before releasing any excess back into the Universe.
Earthing is just a fancy-pants way of saying what many of us have known for years: if you want to feel more grounded, go outside and touch the ground.
People who are proponents of earthing claim that the earth’s electrical field has a substantial affect on our health, and by directly connecting to the earth – walking barefoot, sitting on the grass, laying face-down and smooshing your face into a pile of daisies – you reconnect to the electrical field and gain the health benefits. Those health benefits include reduced stress, reduced inflammation, and improved sleep [http://wellnessmama.com/5600/earthing-sleep/].
I don’t know a lot about the science, though certainly others have called this sketchy. But the science surrounding forest bathing [http://www.oprah.com/spirit/Shinrin-Yoku-Health-Benefits-of-Walking-Outside] in Japan – spending time in a forest – is more solid and is said to improve both physical and mental health.
At least part of the reason for improved health is because when we touch the earth or spend time surrounded by nature we are connecting to Earth energy without having to thing about it. It happens naturally when we are in nature – that moment when you see the sea, or hills in the distance, and stop, breathe deep, and relax.
What this means for you is that if you need to connect to the Earth, all you need do is take your shoes off and step outside. Find some grass or dirt or a rock and touch it with your bare skin. If you can, spend some time there absorbing the energy and feeling it wash away your cares and stresses. Nature heals us; let it do its job.
Sometimes we focus on soil and trees and forget that rocks and stones come from the earth as well. Different crystals have different focuses, but all of them connect in some way to the Earth. She was the one who created them.
If you already own crystals and wish to use them to connect to Earth Energy, just hold them while thinking about where the crystal came from. Listen to your intuition and picture the cave or creek bed or ground the crystal lay upon before being picked up by humans and finding its way to you.
Tap into the memory the crystal has of its first home and allow yourself to feel that energy of the Earth surrounding you and holding you close. Let that energy seep through your pores and into your aura, chakras, your very soul.
If you don’t already own crystals, and want to buy one or two particularly for working with earth energy, try these. Stones that are particularly good for grounding include jet and hematite. Amber and petrified wood, both being part of trees, have a strong connection to earth. Any colour agate and smoky quartz are both associated with Gaia. Kyanite and any other black crystal has a connection to the Earth Star chakra, which is the chakra we connect to the Earth through.
I was going to limit this to three ways to connect to Earth Energy when I got a little nudge – possibly from Gaia herself – to include creativity. The Earth is the centre of fertility and creation. From the platypus to the orchid, avocado to the zebra, all came from her limitless ability to create.
So every time we get creative we are honouring her and connecting to her energy. This is especially true when we just let go and let her work through us – those moments when words flow, or the paintbrush seems to work without conscious thought.
You don’t need to be perfect at your chosen creative pursuit to find the connection to Earth. In fact, maybe it’s better if you aren’t, as you don’t get caught up in worrying about the finished product. Just let go and feel her working through you.
If you don’t already have something in mind, try journalling, painting or drawing, finger painting, gardening, cooking – every time you create something with the intent to connect to the Earth and honour her, you will.
So, Merry Solstice everyone, whether you’re celebrating the winter or summer. How do you connect the Earth? There’s hundreds (thousands?) of ways and I’d love to hear yours!