For a few weeks, people have been writing their summaries of the shittiness that is 2016. I've done my best to point out that there's still time for more awfulness.
In that time Florence Henderson, John Glenn, Alan Thicke and Zsa Zsa Gabor (to name just 4) died; 17 US intelligence agencies have declared that Russia intervened in our Presidential election (NOTE: the US has at least 17 intelligence agencies, and despite billions of dollars, the best we got from them is an after-the-fact assertion that Russia intervened in our Presidential election... seriously); the President-Elect has no interest in any of this Russia intervention bullshit; ISIS attacked Berlin; someone was assassinated in Turkey; major shit happened in Aleppo; and a bunch of people were killed at a fucking fireworks market in Mexico. That's just off the top of my head.
There's still 11 days left.
The thing that I'm now trying to grapple with is even more gloomy: what if 2017 is worse? I don't have an answer for that.
When I started this post, my intention was to write about a piece from Rosanne Cash's Bodies of Water. She describes a New Year's celebration where each member of her family writes things from the preceding year they want to leave behind on a small piece of paper, and those pieces of paper are folded and tossed into the fireplace. I always liked the idea, but I've never tried it myself.
My understanding about the origin of Burning Man involved fire as catharsis.
OMG as luck would have it, my search for "fire as catharsis" and then "fire as cleansing" yielded information about a Gypsy ritual to free oneself from negativity. It's the Rosanne Cash thing (the second part is the Rosanne Cash thing!!!).
Rosemary, lavender, juniper branches, myrtle, or bay.
Toss bundles of each of the herbs listed into the flames of a fire. let its energy cleanse you. Let it feed your spirit, and free you from negativity. Let the fire lull you into a trance, and as you go deeper into the flames, whisper the burdens that lay heavy on your heart.
You can even write on slips of fresh paper the things that you want to release from your life, and then toss them into the flames.It's worth a shot (he said, foolishly tempting fate).