Rising With The Sun ☥ A Summer Solstice Opportunity

Updated: May 10

This being human is a guest house. Every morning a new arrival. A joy, a depression, a meanness, some momentary awareness comes as an unexpected visitor. Welcome and entertain them all! Even if they’re a crowd of sorrows, who violently sweep your house empty of its furniture, still, treat each guest honorably. He may be clearing you out for some new delight. The dark thought, the shame, the malice, meet them at the door laughing, and invite them in. Be grateful for whoever comes, because each has been sent as a guide from beyond. ☥ Rumi ॐ

The phoenix is a magnificent bird of Ra, a Sun God of Kamit/Kemet (Ancient Egypt). As the story is told, the phoenix is born out of the death of something from within itself. Many traditions have adopted the story of the phoenix rising as a symbol of death, resurrection and transformation.

I often mention in my work that tragedy is not the end but can be the catalyst of an auspicious beginning. When we plant a seed in the ground, it must die for the plant to be born. The sun offers nourishment that causes the plant to seek it by rising through the darkness of the dirt and up towards the sky.

We often glorify the rise but forget that first something must die. Though many of us seem determined to ignore it, nature is all around us constantly demonstrating this process of death, transformation and renewal. If we would slow down enough to look within our bodies, we would notice our life force coursing through us and causing our abdomen to rise. The Summer Solstice offers us an opportunity to experience the pinnacle of the rising that occurs all around us.

The Summer Solstice occurs June 20th, 21st or 22nd in the Northern Hemisphere and December 20th, 21st or 22nd in the Southern Hemisphere. So, when the Northern Hemisphere is experiencing the Summer Solstice, the Southern Hemisphere is experiencing the Winter Solstice and vice versa. As the sun’s intensity is at its highest point, the Summer Solstice represents the hot and dry time of year, and the time of great illumination. During the Summer Solstice, we experience the most daylight because the earth’s poles are at its maximum tilt towards the sun. If you’ve read any of my articles on the Spring Equinox, Fall Equinox or Winter Solstice, you already know that nature teaches us self-care strategies for each season to elevate in consciousness.

During this time of year, our inner light expands at its widest, allowing us to engage in deep self-contemplation. We “see” what is really going on in our lives. It’s important to sustain correct energy and make diligent efforts to course correct where needed as any habits formed will take deep root.

One of the most challenging aspects of my work as a Radiant Health Advocate is helping people to see the greatness within themselves. When I first met Charlene Triche’, she was recovering from breast cancer treatment. Her journey to heal herself affected me so deeply that I interviewed her for a series that I created for a wellness app called “Dropping The C Word.

I saw the sun shining bright within Charlene, but she couldn’t see it within herself. Her voice was commanding of respect and powerful, but there was hesitancy within her. It took eight years for me to convince her to share her story. Working with Charlene was like the straw that broke the camel’s back for me because it forced me to accept some harsh realities about the health disparities that exist for Black ☥ Indigenous ☥ Immigrant People, including dehumanizing practices and lack of access to information, options and resources. It was the death of inexperience with these disparities and the rising of the Sekhmet from within me ☥ The Warrior Goddess ☥ Goddess Of Healing.

The Rise Of The Gua Sha

Charlene mentioned to me that she was experiencing bouts of depression and pain in her chest. I instantly knew what remedy would work best for her, but how on earth was I going to get her to let me do what needed to be done? In order for us to rise in consciousness, we must die to fear and ignorance. Fortunately, even though my remedy was going to sound strange to Charlene, she trusted me. The cultivation of trust is absolutely essential for any personal or professional relationship.

I began to explain to Charlene that a gua sha is a healing tool that originated in China. It used to be called “spooning” because health practitioners would use a ceramic spoon (not unlike the ones we see in Asian restaurants) to do the healing work. A gua sha is generally made out of polished wood or crystals. It is used for a variety of ailments including:

☥ Pain relief

☥ Pulling toxins out of tissues

☥ Breaking up scar tissue

In Charlene’s case, I was going to use a gua sha made of green jade to break up scar tissue that had formed around her breast from her surgeries. So, let me set the scene for you. Charlene says that she is experiencing pain and depression, and my response to her was, “I have this Chinese tool that I’d like to use on your chest to break up your scar tissue. This would involve working on your bare chest, directly on and around all of your scars.”

I did a lot of breathing and meditating to try and figure out the best way to deliver this information, but there seemed to be no way for me to sound sane to an American who is not used to holistic therapies. Furthermore, most people truly believe that there is just one pathway for healing, and anything that sounds too earthy or natural is likened to witchcraft.

Somehow, the Sekhmet within me persevered, and Charlene let me work on her chest. She explains her experiences with me during the video series, but I’d like to share my experiences from the perspective of a health practitioner. When I arrived, she was trusting and ready. As I opened her blouse, I prayed that her scars would look like the scars on the White women with whom I worked: neat and created with care. However, I was devastated to see that her scars were just like the scars that I worked on with other Black women: jagged and sloppy.

I called on Shu, the God of Air ☥ Sustenance of Life to connect me with deep Qigong breathing. As I suspected, her scar tissue was hard, but the gua sha worked beautifully. As I worked, she began to say that she felt more than just “stuff breaking up,” she felt like depression was leaving her. In the holistic world, the pain that we feel is caused by congestion, suppressed and repressed emotions that are stuck in the tissues. Once the congestion begins to clear, the trapped emotions can be released and healed. Imagine trying to explain this concept to a culture that is used to popping a pill for every potential ailment without ever taking the time to seek out and remove the root cause. Even books that are written on health disparities such as: Medical Apartheid: The Dark History of Medical Experimentation on Black Americans from Colonial Times to the Present do not mention Indigenous healing strategies as primary, complementary or supplementary restoration and recovery options for Black ☥ Indigenous ☥ Immigrant People.

I’m so grateful that Charlene trusted me to do the work, even though the work was unconventional and probably sounded outrageous to her. I share this story, with her permission, because during our work together, she was able to rise above the pain and depression by allowing the illumination of new knowledge to come in and by allowing her fears to burn up in the ashes of ignorance. In order for us to rise, we need to see the truth and drop the dead weight that exists within and around us.

To date, Charlene has had 11 surgeries, so she is well-versed in the process of allopathic treatments. The illumination of new knowledge included resources to help her manage stress and pain naturally such as:

Breathing exercises

☥ Healing movement exercises such as Qigong and Yoga

☥ Reiki, meditation, massage therapy, chiropractic care