There is something entrancing and mystical about a flame dancing and flickering, moving and swaying with the unseen currents in the air. Fire is vitality – it is the end and beginning of all things. Fire is what kept our oldest ancestors alive in the harshest environments of early life on Earth.
Creativity, passion, victory, and accomplishment are all driven by fire. Fire sometimes fills us with fear – which is exactly what it wants you to feel. It wants you to feel its powerful flames, destroying everything in sight. In an instant, fire transforms into a force to be reckoned with – it stokes itself over and over again. Think about a fire in nature – sometimes, it is the necessary destruction we need to start again. Fires clear the way for new crops and plants to grow. Some trees have fire-resistant bark that requires intense heat to open and release seeds for regeneration. They even have flammable leaves to encourage it! Without fires, these trees will only age without having new generations to carry on their legacy.
Fire forces us to see the light in that darkness so we’re able to make room for new beginnings. Just like The Tower Tarot card, fire represents necessary change. It allows us to break through illusion and exposes what needs to be destroyed, so we can rebuild.
In ways, fire symbolizes hope, guiding us to find clarity through fear. It is clearing the way for hope to manifest. It is in the fire that our intentions are sealed, our creations are solidified, and our self-imposed limitations are burned away. Fire will burn what no longer serves us and will even burn brighter for the offering, in a gesture of gratitude for feeding the flames.
The Hindu goddess, Kali corresponds with the element of fire. She is the Mother of the Universe. The creator, and the destroyer. We call on Kali to help us destroy our ego-self, the part of us that holds us back from our dreams and desires. When our ego has too much power, it traps us in trials often fueled by negative attachments. So Kali uses her sheer force to destroy what stands in the way of our Highest Good.
Your Solar Plexus Chakra – your personal power in life – is your fire. Imagine the Sun (solar energy) infusing you with its warmth, providing you with energy and clarity. To empower your inner warrior, you must engage your Solar Plexus Chakra – your fire – so that you can move through your fear with confidence and authenticity.
Is life feeling stagnant? Grab your Sagittarius, Leo, and Aries friends to burn everything in sight (figuratively, of course). In Astrology, these are the fire signs. When life gets too mundane, they will rebuild themselves and their environment time and time again. The passion and drive for life that stirs up inside them is remarkable. There will never be a dull moment with these signs. Just be sure to keep your eye on them. Just like a fire that is left unattended, they can burn out of control!
Fire is one of the best tools for purging and purifying. October has an energy of clearing, cleaning, and preparation. Nature is about to take back within herself what has stopped breathing; what has stopped living. The same is true for us – this is a powerful opportunity to release what is already dead, or what you’re ready to let die. This is necessary to keep on living and growing. Life and death are a continual cycle.
Which leads us to Dussehra, a great fire festival
Dussehra is a sacred Hindu festival. This holiday celebrates the victory of light over darkness, symbolic of our own inner path of discernable righteousness. In honor of Dussehra, it’s time to purge our own darkness, trusting that good will always prevail.
What is the legend behind Dussehra?
Lord Rama is the seventh incarnation of the god, Vishnu. He was considered the ideal human – righteous and devoted, physically and spiritually virtuous, and destined to conquer evil forces. Lord Rama was forced into exile for fourteen years with his wife Sita (an incarnation of the goddess Lakshmi), and his brother, Lakshmana. They traveled to a forest and lived humbly in peace, until one day, Sita was abducted by the 10-headed demon king of Lanka, Ravana. Lord Rama hastily assembled an army comprised of his brother, and the fierce monkeys under the ruling monkey general, Hanuman. Together they embarked on a journey to save his beloved. After an epic 10-day battle, Lord Rama and his army succeeded in defeating the demon king and freeing his Sita from capture.
Rama returned to his kingdom with Sita and his brother, as his people celebrated their triumph with glittering lights encompassing the land, lighting their path home. This legend is also memorialized at the time of Diwali, which comes twenty days after Dussehra. In India, Dussehra, also called Vijayadashami, is the day of victory. People celebrate loudly with what truly matters – family, friends, happiness, and love – as it is the only road to victory and success. What matters cannot be seen with the human eye, and so, they let their inner light shine as they clear the darkness from their spirit.
How can you celebrate Dussehra?
During Dussehra, you can celebrate by building a bonfire (or a fire in your fireplace), casting into the flames what you’re ready to surrender. This is a time to dispel negative energies, detoxify, and balance the physical body, and cleanse the spirit. What are you releasing right now? Write it down on a piece of paper, and watch it burn. Give anything that is ready to leave over to the flames. Let those attachments go, just make sure not to burn anything that would be a fire hazard! Be smart, burn safely.
This is also a time to work with candle magic! When you invoke the energy of the fire element, you illuminate your intentions with power. Think about blowing out the candles on your birthday cake! Wishes are intentions with training wheels. Candle magic takes nothing more than your chosen candle, a flame, and the power of your intention to invoke its power.
Dussehra encourages us to celebrate our light and set new intentions toward our goals. The idea of good over evil and hope over despair is something that resonates with everyone, from all walks of life. As you travel through the darkness of shadow season, turn on that light switch. Gather your loved ones, put on your favorite clothes, laugh and dance until dawn, light candles, create your favorite foods, burn anything that is no longer serving you, and most of all: Honor the brilliance of your own spirit.
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