Thursday, 3 April 2014

Celtx Non-Fiction Winner: The Returning Light and Harvesting the Happiness Bowl

The following essay by Sophia Bonnie Wodin won joint 2nd place in the fifth week of our 2014 Celtx Competition

The Returning Light and Harvesting the Happiness Bowl 
by Sophia Bonnie Wodin

Each morning brings a dusting of new fallen snow, just enough to make the world look sparkling and lovely all over again. Soup bubbles on the back of the stove. We fill bird feeders regularly and are rewarded by crowds of grateful sparrows and chickadees, goldfinches in their olive plumage and the redheaded woodpecker who lives next door. As well as the intrepid squirrel population. 

We have settled in for winter. During a recent surprisingly-warm-for-the-season midnight, unable to sleep we crept downstairs to watch the stars. The neighbors’ holiday lights were turned off. Even the streetlights seemed far away while the clear velvet star studded sky drew close and we felt held. And then we were greeted by a shooting star blazing across the skies. 

The Solstice has come and been well celebrated. Imperceptibly at first, the light begins to return. Slowly, ever so slowly, a minute in the morning, one in the afternoon and the day begins to expand. Time as we humans measure it moves onwards. And our thoughts turn towards the gratitude. Gratitude for the seasons past and the parts we have been able to play within them. Gratitude for gathering together and then moving apart and the hope of coming together once again. The past, present and future all rolled into one. 

At the beginning of this year we embarked on a project that we called Our Blessing Bowl. We chose a bowl of surpassing beauty that had been stashed away in a corner. Even bringing it out into the light was a blessing. We set it in a special spot and gave it a couple of pens and a stack of slips of paper. Our intention was to write a short note about each happy experience, any time we felt blessed during the year. We expected to read them at the end of the year ….. or when things got tough. 

At the beginning of the year, we noticed joy in so many things, we constantly found ourselves recording the moment and placing it in the bowl. And then there were times that we completely forgot about our Blessing Bowl. Sometimes one of us would remember the bowl and go back in our memories and record a time or place that needed remembering. I wish I could say that our bowl was crammed full with happy memories, but this has been a real year and some of our memories though tender and true s got lost in the rush of life. 

Checking out the bowl I sometimes wondered if we had chosen a bowl that was too large for our special moments. But, mixing around the notes we left each other to mark these special times, I glance at the dates running through my hands and see that every month is well represented. And I breathe a sigh of relief. Our lives are real and our harvest of good times is abundant. 

Soon, as the year turns towards tomorrow, we will unpack this past year and relive the hopes and joys as they unfolded.


Sophia Bonnie Wodin works with people of all ages, genders and traditions to support each individual’s journey to wholeness. Woven throughout Sophia’s work are diverse strands including psychotherapeutic training, Buddhist mindfulness practice, Goddess-oriented and Earth-centered spiritual practices. Sophia’s background includes Reiki, conscious communication training, and conflict resolution. Gathering the strands of these varied teachings and practices, Sophia has arrived at a continually unfolding, unique relationship with spirit. Her writing circles, which open to new participants in January, April and September, focus on aspects of spirituality. You can find her on Facebook.

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