A few years ago, I started to observe not just the 12 Days of Solstice (and/or Christmas) but also a lovely ritual and divination process for the new calendar year known as 12 Omens, a traditional Celtic practice from the people of Wales and Brittany (yes, a Celtic culture!). Who doesn’t love a little bit of Nature augury!
The divination of one’s 12 Omens would traditionally start on the day after Christmas (per this blogpost from Caitlin Matthews) and continue for 12 Days (following the schedule of the 12 Days of Christmas) until Epiphany. Each of the 12 Days corresponds with a month in the coming calendar year. So, for instance, the First Day of Solstice (or Christmas or whenever you begin) represents January, the Second Day is February, etc., right through to the 12th Day which represents December 2019.
Know that you can start when it suits you: you can begin at Solstice (now officially passed but we are still in the Solstice energy), on New Year’s Day, or simply when it feels right. If starting “late”, you can even look back to your memories of these days past … perhaps certain images or experiences jump out… perhaps they are omens. You can also explore in a shorter time span, i.e. over one or more days rather than finding one a day.
And please note that the 12 Omens practice can be done at either Solstice; it’s a wonderful way to look forward to the coming 12 months or celebrations in the Wheel of the Year, and for potential themes and inspiration.
Throughout the 12 Days of Solstice, I have been raising my awareness to the natural world around me for inspiration for the coming months. Traditionally, folks looked to the world around them for their inspiration, looking to Nature itself for an omen (prediction) of the nature (energy, theme, inspiration, etc) for the corresponding month. But your inspiration can come from anywhere… a book, a movie, a conversation. It can come from tarot or oracle cards (pull a card for each month, per this layout ).
This process is aided by the Wisdom of the North that we experience at Winter Solstice… heightened awareness to all around us, connected to our deep inner wisdom and intuition, and the sense of what inspiration we might need in the journey ahead.
Even if you choose not to look for your 12 Omens, choose to be present during these 12 Days of Solstice:
- experience fully each and every moment without distraction
- engage in active listening
- use all your senses to be conscious and aware of everything around you
“You are not IN the universe, you ARE the universe, an intrinsic part of it. Ultimately you are not a person, but a focal point where the universe is becoming conscious of itself. What an amazing miracle.”
– Eckhart Tolle