18 Jun Summer Solstice Love Ritual
We were hoping to celebrate the end of lockdown on this Midsummer Day, but our plans have been foiled by an extension to distancing rules. But the heart is a flexible organ, and we will offer routes in to love and connection despite, and perhaps because of the distance that remains at present between us in public indoor spaces.
Like ‘grief’, love is a four-letter word that includes many different feelings and meanings. For me, a way into loving and being loved – whether it is in family, friendship, sensual, sexual, community or other contexts, is to be in connection with myself. Our personal history, personality, cultural and gender socialisation all play their part too.
Connecting with my body, and my inner life is an ongoing process. I didn’t begin to unfold my own desires until I was in my forties. Tapping into our longings, asking ourselves what we want can be a huge adventure. It was also really helpful to learn skills that help build the capacity for intimacy.
After ‘me’, the next step is meeting ‘you’, the other. It involves noticing whether I feel safe enough to trust another person, whether I want to connect with them. Sometimes this is difficult, and sometimes I might do it too easily. Again, our patterns of relating play a part, as well as having the luck to meet willing others to explore with.
Then what happens when we land in a group. Can we be authentic together, and connect to ‘we’ space, (as Thomas Hübl calls it)? Our ability to open our hearts when it feels appropriate also comes into play in groups. “We are wired for connection,” as Sophy Banks says, “to be held in community”, but it can be elusive to find places where all of our parts are welcome.
In synch with the Summer Solstice, can we feel the warmth of sunshine and open our hearts? What is ready to blossom in us? Are we able to appreciate others blooming? Inviting the possibility of vulnerability and shared intimacy, will our group journey into the theme of love elicit tears of longing or the joy of coming together?