It’s Saturday evening as I write this and here in the northern hemisphere, it’s the heart of winter. The darkest time of the year… and my favorite time of the year. Sure summer is fun, being outdoors all the time with everyone, but this time of year is so sacred. It’s in the dark womb of winter that we plant the seeds of light that will soon be born and will blossom into the coming year and bear their fruit for everyone. That’s why the intentions we set now are so potent, and why meditating at this time of year can be an incredibly deep experience. I just came back from Amrit Singh and Siri Dyal Kaur’s house (right behind our house) where the Espanola sangat gathered to celebrate the return of an old soul. Today is the 120th day of her pregnancy, the time when the soul enters the womb. It is our tradition here to hold a ceremony for the mother to honor her and welcome in the soul of the child. Siri Dyal Kaur sat on a throne of piled up sheepskins surrounded by flowers and candles, and we all brought her presents and sang to her for an hour. We sang “Adi Shakti Namo Namo, Sarib Shakti Namo Namo, Pritam Bhagvati Namo Namo, Kundalini Mata Shakti Namo Namo” to honor her as the goddess she is and to welcome the arriving soul into her womb and into our sangat with love and protection. She prepared a wonderful feast of delicious vege soup, breadsticks and baked potatos and she made an incredible dessert of rich creamy home made ice cream filled with fresh berries and pineapple. Yum! This is her second child. Her and Amrit’s first, Ram Rattan Kaur, just turned two in October. She is a great soul and we love being her auntie and uncle Ji. Ram Rattan looked beautiful in her white dress and pukka turban and chuni. Her papa snapped this picture as she climbed into her mother’s arms during the chanting.