Monthly Columns

As Above, So Below (How the Stars Became Our Hearts)

Seasons Blessings!



Moving into this period of darkness and the first snows begin to fall. I come to this place of contemplation. And as with the last few pieces, I’ll lose my 3rd person textbook voice. This piece will be a bit meta, as, yes, it’s snowing and I just now started this. Lol. And I said “Lol”. And I said that I said. This message is a download, heavy on my heart with these past moons. A lesson that’s been delivered to me through my personal life, and I feel the need to share. 

Blessed Samhain. 

What a strange season it has been, closing with a lunar eclipse, dumping out our blessings (and curses) in mass quantities. Everyone is on a different path, yet the energy of the moons seem to tie us together. It seems to have brought an intense amount of pressure, and pressure seems to be the name of the game with growth. As winter returns, we’re reminded of the harsher truth of life. The cold, the darkness, the pain, though they are negative, they teach us to be thankful. They teach us the importance of love and togetherness.



Yule time seems to light the fire in our hearts that keeps us warm through the winter.

Through this lens, we can see that  the darkness calls the light. And maybe in this way, we have to suffer. Or we couldn’t even experience pleasure. Everything is balanced. Everything has enough pros and cons that it evens out. The burn of the summer sun, and the chill of winter are equally bothersome. But the fun of swimming is best in weather where you’d otherwise be too warm. And the beauty of snowfall completely transforming your landscape is unparalleled.

A lush spring follows a harsh winter.

A thankful harvest is attained by a summer tilling the fields.

When you learn the true pleasure of gain comes from the effort sacrificed, you understand the true gift is giving. To have an abundance in the winter is a blessing; and that life is a cycle of loss and gain. Energy exchange with the universe. And that the spirit of compassion is understanding that our hearts beat as one. We’re all in pain. We’re all dealing with some trauma. Every human being experiences tremendous heartbreak in their lives, and some are able to rise from their ashes like the Phoenix. Others may not.



Yule time is time to acknowledge that not all will survive the winter.

There are many lessons to unpack and to hibernate on. Winter is a time to slow down. Take inventory. Mentally, physically, and spiritual love. And I’m your house… in everything. A time of glammed and glitz. A time to appreciate the gifts of the Great Spirit. And to acknowledge the darkness, and the harsh reality of our relationship with nature as human beings, and ultimately to break free of the ego that fears feeding the bear with your body, because you do not remember you are the bear. You forget, as you drink, that you are the water. You are the forest, and trees. And that life, identity, and reality itself are just superfluous as the play between light and dark. 

Embrace the darkness, and have a Blessed Yule. May you flourish this winter


And so it is.



About the Author:

Alexiel Raynes is a shaman, philosopher, and musician from Louisville, Ky. He has studied religion and science for over 20 years. His spiritual path focuses on self realization, the liberation of the constraints of the mind on consciousness. He also studies plant medicines and their use in indigenous cultures world wide. He is fascinated with exploring the world beyond the veil of mainstream western science, and postulates at what lies beyond general consensus reality.

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