For all the plants of the ancient world who stored the light and fire of the sun, only to release it ages later from the coal and oil, and for all the trees and smaller plants who continue to fuel our fires, we give thanks. We offer gratitude for the fires and the fuels which allow us to live warm through cold winters, to cook our food, to travel great distances over land, sea and sky, and to see each other’s faces in the dark of night. We also offer apologies for our human overuse of the fossil fuels to the detriment of the earth, water and air. We are sorry for the pollution of streams, the death of fishes and seabirds in oil slicks, the clogging of the air and now, especially, the radical shifting of the climate that has sustained our species for so long.
At this time of the equinox, of the balancing of light and dark, we ask for balance in our relationship with fire and fuels. We ask for wisdom and courage to change our ways as well as inspiration to find new ways, so that the human family can have warmth and light and the comfort and beauty of fire without taking too much, burning too much. May we learn from those who can still teach us to treat our grandparent Fire with love, understanding, and respect.
Suggestions for a gratitude circle: Light a candle, a lamp or a fire. Consider the journey of the light from the sun-source to the new or ancient plant source (perhaps including also an animal source) to the flame before you. Offer thanks for all the helpers along the way. Look for balance between light and dark, both within and without. Offer gratitude for the long days of summer now passing and for the longer nights of fall and winter now becoming ascendant, and for the gift of fire to see us through.