Our mother, Daykeeper founder Maya Del Mar, loved putting together Christmas stockings. One of the high moments of the year was finding our own on Christmas morning. She would have filled each of them with personalized treats and gifts. The amount of thought, time and love she had invested in each really lifted this tradition to a state of art. Our Aunt Karla Wessel made very beautiful stockings for each one of us, shining with sequins, decorated with seasonal figures like snowmen and reindeer and beautifully personalized. It was amazing to enter the living room and see them: a brightly colored line of stockings, bulging with surprises lovingly chosen and put together in secret for each of us by the smartest helper Santa ever had. With our childish ability to let ourselves be filled, we would descend on them, discovering with eager eyes and fingers each candy, peanut, piece of fruit and toy. Our childhood home wasn’t devoid of pain, but these moments, like our precious mother, were entwined with life’s magic.
Somehow as we grew and moved the stunning stockings Aunt Karla made got lost, but one way or another, Maya would continue to put together a similar package of surprises for each of us. The toys were replaced by a CD or an astrological calendar, the oranges by truffles or whatever she knew would please each of us.
The following ritual unfolded in my mind spontaneously as I was reading about Yule. No doubt our mother’s influence shines through and perhaps she even “sent” it as she has so many good ideas since her transition.
I looked into the roots of this tradition, but it’s hard to find anything very convincing. They seem to be lost in the mist of time (leading me to suspect their origin in one of many suppressed goddess traditions). What hasn’t been lost is the Christmas stocking’s connection to childhood and joy.
Like a small one’s free mind, the Christmas stocking waits to be filled with happy surprises.
Whether or not you have a child or grownup to give one to this Christmas, you can use the following ritual to make a magical stocking for the child within, and bring to light the intentions you wish to receive and share.
It’s great to share with others, particularly children, and help them use their imagination to manifest their dreams for the new cycle ahead.
- Use one of the Christmas stockings sold at numerous markets and stands, or just a plain sock.
- For each person, cut 12 rectangular 1 ½ x 2 inch strips of green colored paper.
- Take six strips, and on each of the strips, write one of the desires you wish to manifest in the New Year. For instance: A healthy back. A successful and lucrative business. Peace in my heart. Financial freedom. A happy and mutually empowering relationship. A living space I like, that’s attractive, warm and comfortable. Healing for my child within. A fulfilling sex life…
- If sharing the ritual with others, on each of the six remaining strips, write an intention equivalent to yours for someone else. Voice it in impersonal terms, like: Good health. Success and prosperity in your chosen line. Peace in your heart. Financial freedom. Happiness in love, and so on.
- If doing this on your own, on each of the six remaining strips, write a desire for another person or cause: My mother’s health. My brother’s good work situation. My bbf’s prosperity. My country’s representative democracy. The cancellation of the North Dakota pipeline. Peace and prosperity for Syria. A world where kindness is the norm…
- Roll each strip up like a little scroll and tie it with a red ribbon. As you to this, take each roll in your hands, one by one, closing your eyes for a moment, and impressing them with your desire.
- If sharing the ritual, put the six impersonal intentions for others in a dish, and mix them up.
- Each person then takes six rolls from the dish, so you have six mystery desires.
- Fill the stocking with peanuts, chocolates and other small seasonal treats, and as you do, intersperse the rolls in the filling randomly.
- Hold the stocking between your hands and say:
In the name of my inner child, I bless this stocking with the power of hope, faith and imagination to manifest these gifts. The Universe now moves to fulfill them, here and now.
- Beginning on Solstice (December 21, 2016) or Christmas, take out one of the tiny scrolls each day (with your morning tea or coffee), read the desire, close your eyes and imagine that it’s already taken shape before you.
- Paste the day’s strip of paper on a sheet of red paper.
- Keep your sheet of paper and spend some moments reading and thinking about each desire three times daily: morning, noon and night, until your Solstice dreams come true.