Winter was a time of slumbering, death-like stillness, darkness and coldness. This is a time to honor Mani, celebrate by Blot, Sumbel, Games and High Feast. A full moon is only a couple of days away. Today is also the first day of Winter. Mani lights the way for the hunters at night illuminating the forest with his silvery eyes. Burn a Yule Log and jump the flames for luck and purification. It is a time for rekindling friendships, taking oaths and setting yearly goals. Also a good night for journaling your dreams.
On this day we also remind ourselves of the virtue of Courage. Courage is the ability to do something that frightens one. Strength in the face of pain or grief. Synonyms: braver, pluck, valor, grit, heroism.
The brave and generous have the best lives. They’re seldom sorry. - The Havamal
Horses are known to be strong, free, swift, loyal, teamwork, and courageous; and are one of the more spiritual amongst the animal kingdom. And today, the roar of the lion is often associated with fearlessness. 'Physical courage' is courage in the face of physical pain, hardship, death, or threat of death. 'Moral courage' is the ability to act rightly in the face of popular opposition, shame, scandal, or discouragement. Are you doing your best? Do you refuse the temptation to be dishonest or unfair?
Ok, I know almost everyone understands what being brave is about. However, an important thing to understand is that being brave doesn't mean that you aren't afraid. What makes people 'courageous' is doing the right thing even when they are afraid.
Another important idea is that being brave doesn't mean you should be stupid. If you see someone being beaten up by a bully who is too big for you to fight without getting hurt yourself, use your 'courage' to find an official to stop the fight. Courage is the virtue that gives you the heart to do the best you can to defend others and to do what's right.
The virtue of courage helps us to take the initiative to make changes in our lives and/ or to accept changes brought before us. Courage can allow you to shed old patterns, especially those patterns that are harmful to your body or soul. This virtue allows you to reach new levels of being. No matter who you are, no matter what has already happened to you, no matter what you have done, it is still possible to have a new beginning.
Courage is the resolve to act virtuously, especially when it is most difficult. It is acting for the good, when it would be much easier not to this time. Courage is a strength drawn from a wise balance between the weaknesses of cowardice and recklessness. It is the discipline to act on wisely-chosen values rather than an impulse.
The Vikings were known for their courage and bravery in battle, but courage applies to more than simply being brave in battle. Ordinary people courageously persevere over fatigue, temptation, and hardship to benefit others. The single mother who gets her children dressed for school each day before she goes to work herself, the unskilled worker who endures a low-paying, demeaning, and exhausting job to earn the money to send his children off to college, and the alcoholic who never indulges in a drink are all choosing to do the right thing despite the hardships.
Have the courage to live by your own code of honor, but do so with wisdom and discretion. Be willing to speak truth. Do the right thing - without risking imprisonment. Overcome addictions. Have the Strength to achieve in the face of opposition.
Glad Yuletide to Everyone. Hail!