Thursday, December 6, 2012

Advent- Waldorf Inspired mixed with Family Tradition

Advent Poem
The First Light of Advent is the Light of Stone-

Stones that live in crystals, seashells, and bones.

The Second Light of Advent is the Light of the Plants-

Plants that reach up to the sun and in the breezes dance.

The Third Light of Advent is the Light of the Beasts-

All await the birth, from greatest and to the least.

The Fourth Light of Advent is the Light of Humankind-

The light of hope that we may learn to love and understand.

~Rudolf Steiner.

This Viking Family does celebrate Advent to celebrate the birth of the White Christ. This is a special time of year starting with Michaelmas and St. Martin's Day in November. 

As a habit I do not start anything Christmas related until December 1st. I want to make sure the focus and the spirit of Thanks Giving is the focus in November.

This year we are adding new elements of the Waldorf community to our holiday tradition. One of the new elements is the Advent Spiral and poem by Rudolf Steiner. 

The sentiments and tradition of the Advent Spiral is very touching. The message behind the Advent Spiral is very poignant for this day and age. The room starts off dark and as each candle is lit the room is illuminated.. We have been guiding the Viking Children into understanding that this time of year is about Giving, Charity, Hope, Love, Joy and Life. The darkness is all the negativeness we experience with the hustle and bustle of the self centered and materialistic world. The Advent wreath or spiral should represent a time for meditation and reflection. 

My Sister is doing 30 Days of Gratitude on Facebook. Each day, she reflects on what she is grateful for in her life and then posts it on Facebook. This is exactly what the Advent Wreath and Spiral represents. 

Our new tradition this year is to combine both the traditional Advent Wreath with the Advent Spiral. 

Each Advent Sunday when we light a new candle that represents Hope, Love, Joy and Peace we will also add the corresponding element. The first Sunday represents Hope and is represented by the Mineral World. The Viking Kiddos have collected all their sea shells, crystals and favorite stones and have placed them next to the corresponding candle. 

The Second Sunday represents Love and the corresponding element is the Plant World. I think this would be a perfect time to add the evergreen bough around the circle.  

Third Sunday represents Joy and the corresponding elements is the Animal World. I am sure we can find something ideal to add to this Sunday.

The Fourth Sunday is usually the Sunday before Christmas and it represents  Peace. This is represented in the last line of Rudolf Steiner's Advent poem and it is the Human World. I think it is appropriate to wish for Peace for all of mankind during this time. 

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