At 11.50 tonight I will be dropping TM off to catch a coach to Heathrow on the first leg of a long journey to Australia to spend a fortnight with his children.
When I get back here at midnight, in the light of the fire and candles, I'll lift a glass to the old year passing and to the new year coming in – and to you all, my friends.
Then I'll light the candle in my little solstice garden, above, light some frankincense, and open my notebook to unspool the year that has just passed. Month by month from December back to January, I'll note the overall tone of the month (to the extent that I can remember), the major events, if any, and the mistakes, regrets or losses of each month ditto.
Then I'll wind it back in again from January to December writing of the joys, the creations, the turning points, the gifts, the new people, skills, or lifegiving events that came in each month.
If I can I'll assign a keynote word or phrase to each month.
After that I'll consider the theme of the whole year, the summation of joys and losses. What did I learn from this year? What am I now letting go of? I'll note the latter on small slips of paper and burn each one as I speak it aloud.
Then I'll invite in the new year, and request ways forward that increase wellbeing and happiness for myself, those I love, and the wider world – all of us. I'll meditate for a few minutes, and then draw a tarot card as a way of allowing a relevant image or archetype to arise from the unconscious as a point of focus.
I'll finish with the tiny prayer with which I conclude my daily meditation:
May all being be at peace with themselves
May all beings be at peace with each other
May all beings be at peace.