At that time, many people look back to the past year, remember where they have gone, whom they have met, if something special came to pass. At such a turning point Bilbo in “The Hobbit” stood, too:
Roads go ever ever on,
Over rock and under tree,
By caves where never sun has shone,
By streams that never find the sea;
Over snow by winter sown,
And through the merry flowers of June,
Over grass and over stone,
And under mountains in the moon.
Roads go ever ever on
Under cloud and under star,
Yet feet that wandering have gone
Turn at last to home afar.
Eyes that fire and sword have seen
And horror in the halls of stone
Look at last on meadows green
And trees and hills they long have known.
It is good to remember.
It is good to make one aware of what has been, for what to be grateful, what to do next time differently.
But then it is the time to say farewell to the past. It was more or less good, worth considering, eventful – but it was.
If we say goodbye to the past and release it, that gives us the space to be receptive to something new, to allow the coming.
An almost forgotten custom is to fumigate house and farm at the turn of the year during the “Raunächte” (the twelve nights after Christmas/ winter solstice) – to which the New Year’s Eve belongs, too – to purify the home not only outwardly, but even spiritually with incense resp. herbs. Let’s draw inspiration from that: Let’s decide what we want to let go, from what we want to depart. Let us release it, let us look after the ascending smoke, let us say farewell.
And let us thereby gear up for what the New Year may bring to us.