It's now tradition in our nest to celebrate the lights of winter during the holiday season. Our observance spans several weeks, and includes many small rituals, beginning on the first Sunday of Advent, which just passed. I didn't make a wreath this year, and instead opted for a simple arrangement of handmade beeswax candles.
With my attention on purchasing as little and as mindfully as possible for the holidays, I was happy to use up the rest of my local beeswax stash to make four candles for Advent - plus three more for my homemade food & craft swap this weekend.
The candles are lightly scented with essential oils of sweet orange, clove, cedarwood, and patchouli.
For our devotion, I decorated each candle with a natural item that corresponds with the focus of the week in the Waldorf tradition: stones, plants, animals, and humankind. On these items, I wrote the focus of each respective week in the Christian/pagan tradition: hope, peace, joy, and love. (Like many of the celebrations in our home, we pull from rituals of various cultures to create what resonates with us as a family.)
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 plants–
Plants that reach up to the sun and in the breezes dance.
The third light of Advent is the light of beasts–
All await the birth, from the greatest and in 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