“Three things cannot long be hidden, the sun, the moon, and the truth.” ~ Buddha

Summer Solstice marks the longest day of the year when the Sun reaches its highest point on the celestial equator. Here in the northern hemisphere, we enter the season of summer, which also coincides with the Sun’s transition into the zodiacal sign of Cancer (typically on Jun 20 or 21). It is a time of celebration when we ascend into our heightened potential; containing the divine cosmic energies to elevate our consciousness. It represents the full moon of the year; the culmination, and we see what has come to fruition from the seeds we planted at the Winter Solstice (which represents the new moon of the year). Similar to the moon cycles – what the Winter Solstice promises the Summer Solstice fulfills.

It is typically a time to come together in community to connect and honor all that has actualized in our lives and to emanate all that has been illumed or transformed, thus far, on our journey of self-realization.

The solstices are gateways in consciousness; openings with expansive opportunities. The summer and winter solstices are polarity points between light and dark, solar and lunar, masculine and feminine. Yoga, is the practice of yoking or merging the polarities of our being. It’s about cultivating inner harmony.

In esoteric yoga, we look to the sun and the moon to better understand where we are in consciousness both as individuals (natal astrological chart) and as a collective (transiting planets). By observing the patterns in nature and in the cosmos over time we come to understand ourselves and our relationship to life. This data becomes the source of information used to interpret the causes of limitation, dissonance, and imbalance occurring in our experience. Recognizing what thought forms, beliefs, behaviors and ideas keep us in a state of duality serve to show us what is latent in the subconscious or what we are predisposed to create and re-create that is out of our integrity.

The practice of yoga promotes living in integrity. Meaning we cultivate inner strength and conviction according to our path of truth. This is the straight and narrow path. The pursuit of neither pushing nor resisting, but rather a constant state of yielding to the present in alignment, sustaining conscious awareness of one’s personal proclivities without reacting to our urges.

Life’s natural state is harmonic, and therefore, it is constantly creating opportunities for us to be in harmony and take aligned or “right” action. In the Taoist tradition this is referred to as wu wei, an action accomplishing its purpose in accordance with the nature of things and events; in yoga, it’s called rita (rta) or the natural order of life and the cosmos. Both mystically and scientifically it is known that from balance only balance can flow – from goodness only goodness can flow. If indeed, the seed of our existence is harmonic, then by our very nature we can at any time choose harmony.

Yoga is a philosophical system and methodology for cultivating balance. Ultimately, the balance between what we sometimes think or feel is dual and opposing. There is no I without Other, there is no outer without the inner, there is no day without night. We are always in a state of communion, whether we are conscious of it or not.

Duality is a state of  mind, not a natural state of our being. And, our hearts know this as it pulses daily in alignment with Source. Its singular purpose is to consistently be in sync with the needs of the physical body as it interacts with life. The goal is to harness the power of the middle path; the inner pillar of energy or Sushumna Nadi. This is the path of non-duality or Advaita.

The Summer Solstice gives us a glimpse at what is ripening in our lives, what is lit up, and ready to thrive. It is the apex of our annual cyclical year and our experiences are showing us what is active and vital in our lives. Energetically, this is related to the third eye, the Ajna Chakra. It is here that we access all that ever was and all that ever will be, harnessing intuition through presence and the power of now; feeling deeply into the divine order of life to recognize when the fruits of our labors have fully formed and matured.

As we culminate and merge the qualities of the sun and moon (the two petals of the lotus at the ajna chakra) — synchronizing our creative expression and mastering the physical dimension by holding steady between active and passive — we harmonize with the fluidity of life and the natural timing of things. Divinely inspired we move with grace and ease, all ego motivation aside, to sow the seeds of unity, connection, and vibrancy that shines from within!

May we all awaken our vibrant hearts as we ripen into our full potential!

SUGGESTED PRAYER for Summer Solstice offered by Paramahansa Yogananda.
“O blazing Light! awaken my heart, awaken my soul, ignite my darkness, tear the veil of silence, and fill my temple with Thy glory.”

+ Sacred fire activation (create a ceremony to re-charge your vision and goals)
+ Give recognition and homage to all those who supported and uplifted you
+ Contemplate all that is currently being illuminated in your life
+ Sunbathe, go fruit picking, or enjoy the bounty of your local farmers market
+ Celebrate your success with an ecstatic dance party or gather with like minded friends
+ Invite more light and consciousness into your daily experience
+ Connect with your higher self or the source of your being through meditation
+ Repeat a prayer of awakening and affirm your commitment to living consciously