Looking for Light in the Dark Days of Winter


We’re well past the Solstice, yet still looking for the return of the Light. What dark days this winter has brought to American dreams and ideals. Across the arc of history, the change of seasons has come and gone through more savage times than these, and we have survived. So here is my evidence that the Light will come as surely as the seasons turn.

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In looking at what brings Light into my life I acknowledge my daughter – she is the brightest ray of sunshine and the heart of Love and Light.

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The inauguration of President Joe Biden and Vice-President Kamala Harris gives hope, and these words, spoken at the event, were inspiring.

“The new dawn blooms as we free it.

For there is always light,

if only we’re brave enough to see it.

If only we’re brave enough to be it.”   – Amanda Gorman, The Hill We Climb

Being a night owl rather than an early bird I am rarely up to see the dawn. But here is a December morning I was out and about for a stunning sunrise. Nature does not disappoint.


The archetype of the Light Bearer is present right now.

“For over two thousand years, the archetype of the Light Bearer has been foremost in human spiritual life—certainly, at any rate, in our western world. The Greeks told the story of the mortal Prometheus, who stole fire from the gods and brought it back to humankind. There was Christ, who brought Light into a dark world, and Moses, who brought the light of law. Buddha brought the hope of enlightenment. The light symbol is also present in the Prophet of Islam. Each can be seen as an embodiment of the Light Bearer archetype.” – Seena Frost

In researching the Light Bearer archetype, I was surprised to learn the name “Lucifer” is derived from the Latin “Lucem Ferre” meaning “Light Bearer.” Lucifer is embraced as a figure of knowledge and rebellion. He is also typically depicted as highly intelligent, and even the source of knowledge. In translation from Hebrew, Lucifer is translated as “the morning star,” or, as an adjective, “light-bringing.” (1) I wonder if that’s why the Netflix show Lucifer is popular (show’s main character is named Lucifer Morningstar). Are we all examining concepts of good and evil, heaven and hell, guilt, judgement, redemption, forgiveness and punishment? Many see this moment as a return to truth and knowledge, a moment of turning away from the darkness of fear, racism, oppression, divisiveness and falsehood. Do I dare to be optimistic?

This is a collage image of the Light Bearer archetype I made in 2017, in a process called SoulCollage ®.


We are also seeing a lot of the Warrior archetype – love warrior, truth warrior, justice warrior, spiritual warrior – dedicated, courageous, fierce, self-sacrificing, loyal. He or she endures hardship for just causes, and fights to seek truth, right wrongs, and find equality. This quote has been with me for many years now.

            The Knighthood of Our Times

            “There is a knighthood of our time whose members do not ride 

            through the darkness of physical forests as of old,

            but through the forests of darkened minds;

            They are armed with a spiritual armor 

            and an inner sun makes them radiant;

            Out of them shines healing,

            healing that flows from the knowledge of mankind as a spiritual being;

            They must create inner order, inner justice, peace and conviction,

            in the darkness of our time.” – Karl König

Here is a SoulCollage ® image I created for the Warrior archetype.


“The warrior archetype has been around for millennia, emerging and reemerging from one era to the next in human societies around the globe. Its pervasiveness is not accidental. It stems from an intuitive awareness that to live life as full human beings, we must learn the qualities of courage, honor, honesty, and dedication to peace.” –Jill Jepson, Writing as a Sacred Path

In Oregon, with its short days and long dark nights we are also literally looking for the light; getting outside to bask in whatever sunlight there is.


Spiritual practice can call in the light. As noted in the Seena Frost quote above, Light is associated with spiritual masters and spiritual practice in belief systems across the planet. I love this interpretation of the Namaste greeting – the Light in me sees the Light in you.


The turn of the seasons brings hope and renewal. Every glimpse of spring lifts the spirits. If buds and blooms emerge, then surely the sun shines. I walk around the neighborhood looking for little glimpses of the turn of the season from the dark of winter to the rebirth and renewal of spring.IMG_81710-30

Even in the darkest winter we can find sources of hope, inspiration, renewal, forward evolution, Love and Light. We need to bring our own light into the world to drive out darkness wherever we can. That might be a social justice protest, a donation to the food bank, or a lawn sign for Love over Hate. We each find the most impactful way to take our stand for Light in a way that suits our means and personality.

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There’s always music. These lyrics are on my playlist.

Little darling, it’s been a long cold lonely winter
Little darling, it feels like years since it’s been here

Here comes the sun
Here comes the sun, and I say
It’s all right

– George Harrison, from the 1969 Beatles album Abbey Road

I remind myself a dark day doesn’t mean the sun will never shine again. I do my best to remain hopeful and not squander my precious moments on darkness, to not drain my spirit and exhaust myself on anger and frustration. I’ve heard these last months referred to as “an era of exhausting outrage”. Yep.

“Sadness flies on the wings of the morning, and out of the heart of darkness comes the light.” – Jean Giraudoux

My work is to figure out how I am going to be the Light, or bring the Light.

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“It is during our darkest moments we must focus to see the light.”– Aristotle

And there it is… Some days a vague hazy glow obscured by clouds, but still present.


“If clouds are blocking the sun, there will always be a silver lining that reminds me to keep on trying.”  – Matthew Quick, The Silver Linings Playbook


(1) https://bloguniversalfreemasonry.wordpress.com/2018/10/22/lucifer-devil-christ-or-something-else/

©  2021 Carol Merwin

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