Sun (Rise) As Ritual

May 6, 2021

I rise early so I can find the quiet in the day before it is filled with demands and constraints. In the morning my body feels open and expansive.  It feels light and ethereal.  It feels full and at the same time hollow. Nothing has been written on my mind – except for dreams. My movements haven’t committed to a path.  Watching the Sun rise is a sip of soothing tea, savouring the mystery in the magic, and the return to ritual. 

We have research that clearly shows the value of the early rise. In Ayurvedic practices I’ve heard that waking with or before the sun is essential because of the “… loving (sattvic) qualities in nature that bring peace of mind and freshness to the senses”. (Vasant Lad)  The golden hour, the waking of the Earth, the calling of a people to awaken to the newness in themselves, the reminder to give birth to something new within and around you – there is magic to the rise.  When our eyes open we are literally burning off the layers of yesterday and igniting the new. 

Lately, my early rise allows the day to unfold rather than rush towards me. As a mother who is an artist and holds a regular 9-5 job, those early mornings are usually the only time in the day that I have enough energy to harness my creative energy. No one has disrupted the thoughts laid down by sleep and rest. My voice has not been heard nor raised. I get the opportunity to flow into expression that is truly mine, unfiltered, and uncontaminated by others expectations and thoughts.

More importantly, the sunrise signals the beginning of my daily rituals that are rooted in practices anchored in my core values. What I do in the 2 hours after waking is a direct reflection of my values.  It is a run through of how I will approach uncertainty, challenges, and self-care.

My Sunrise Ritual:

  1. Wake without an alarm
  2. Read for 1 hour
  3. Dry Brushing & Cold Shower
  4. Meditation
  5. 45 – 60 minute walk
  6. Movement Practice (Yoga/Pilates)
  7. Breakfast

It took me a while to establish this practice.  Truth be told it evolved organically once I became very clear about my values around rest, spiritual and physical nourishment, and mobility. 

The next time you awaken to the rise of the day spend some time reflecting on your values.  More importantly ask yourself to examine how your values translate to practices that become rituals.