I love candles, and even the smallest flame can dispel deep darkness and bring comfort. This time of year our festivals celebrate light overcoming darkness, and we are encouraged to be merry and bright, spreading light and happiness where there is sadness, like candles in the dark.
But I have also been pondering the importance of darkness. Darkness is sometimes necessary to for us to see the lights as I wrote yesterday. The contrast is an essential part of our perception of both light and dark, one shows up the other.
And what about dark in itself? I have been thinking a lot about a poem by Wendell Berry. I initially resisted its message, because I have always felt light was more important than darkness. But I wonder. Perhaps the dark has its own gifts. Even when we can’t to see the way ahead we walk by faith and not by sight. And sometimes the dark brings insights which would never be seen in the light.