Happy New Year! I’m not just saying that. This time around, I’m greeting January with an eagerness and optimism that has eluded me the last couple of years.
For a long time, I misunderstood the power and potential the new year brings. The holiday actually felt like kind of a letdown after the fun and frivolity of the Christmas season. New Year’s Day would arrive and bring with it a return to seriousness and discipline.
Like many, I would think about things to take on or give up with the goal of being healthier, happier, or more productive and organized.
Like many, my intentions would usually fizzle out by early February.
It wasn’t until I discovered Unity and began taking part in the powerful Burning Bowl and White Stone ceremonies that I realized how transformative releasing and holding intention can be.
The tradition of these ceremonies at Unity has helped shift my thinking about the power of welcoming the new year from a spiritual perspective and regarding myself as a divine being.
The Power of Release
It makes sense, doesn’t it, that to welcome something into our lives, we need to make room for it? The same goes for our spiritual lives too. Over the years, so many of our thoughts harden into beliefs. It happens so imperceptibly, we don’t even notice, and before long our thoughts become our worldview and we start saying things like, “That’s just the way it is.”
But the third Unity principle—Our thoughts have the creative power to influence events and determine our experiences—tells us otherwise. It reminds us we are creating our lives with the power of our thinking. Doesn’t it stand to reason we then have the power to change those thoughts?
Maybe that’s the reason so many New Year’s resolutions don’t last. The intention is there. The desire too. But alone they can’t surmount long-held beliefs that keep us stuck in the patterns we’re so eager to break free of.