It’s almost Summer Solstice,  Oh, my.  It did come very fast this year!

I found myself thinking a few days ago, Gosh. The days are way toooo long!  (By that I meant the days seemed to slip away — it still seemed like afternoon and it was almost 9 pm!  I had planned a leisurely evening, reading, relaxing, and the day was already nearly done.)  But then I was pulled up short when I realized that we were only days away from the longest day of the year.  Do things ever creep up on you that way?

Now that it’s upon us, what can we say about this annual turning?  Let’s reflect together on this one day when there is more light than on any other of the 364 days just past, or those yet to come?

What about asking one of the perennial questions:  What are we here for?  How are we using ourselves, or being used?  Just up, or for something?  I’ve been asking myself such questions and pondering the responses over the last several weeks as I have been working with Jean Houston’s course, Awakening to Your Life’s Purpose.  (I mentioned one exercise that was eye-opening for me in my recent blog: Myth Making and Personal Growth).  

Taking stock at 70+, I have decided that one cause I particularly want to focus on in the next months, years, decades… is educating girls — at home, yes, but particularly in developing countries. It is well documented that when you educate girls, extraordinary things happen:  a ripple of positive changes spreads out.  How do we end global poverty? Educate Girls!

“Research shows that an educated girl will marry later, have fewer children, and educate the children she does have – sons and daughters equally. She is more likely to avoid contracting HIV/AIDS, and less likely to be a victim of domestic violence. She’ll earn more money, and is more likely to become a community leader.”

But this is easier said than done.  Girls face huge barriers in many countries today.  I recently watched a powerful documentary called GirlRising.  The quote above is from a review of the film.  I highly recommend that you make every effort to see this doc.  I was touched, inspired, sobered, saddened, heartened, motivated, encouraged…  Watch the trailer here.  If you choose, you can add your support and encouragement here or here.  Educating girls works!  Educating girls is a way to really make a difference.

To close my Solstice musings, here’s a quote from George Bernard Shaw which inspires me as well.  I call it, Life is a Splendid Torch!  Shaw said,

This is the true joy in life, being used for a purpose recognized by yourself as a mighty one. Being a force of nature instead of a feverish, selfish little clod of ailments and grievances, complaining that the world will not devote itself to making you happy. I am of the opinion that my life belongs to the whole community and as long as I live, it is my privilege to do for it what I can. I want to be thoroughly used up when I die, for the harder I work, the more I live. I rejoice in life for its own sake. Life is no brief candle to me. It is a sort of splendid torch which I have got hold of for the moment and I want to make it burn as brightly as possible before handing it on to future generations.  

May your Solstice and Summer be afire with joy, blessings, well-being, gratitude, time for yourself and others, doing and being, laughter and delight.

Your comments and questions are always most welcome.

Jill Schroder is the author of BECOMING: Journeying Toward Authenticity.  BECOMING is an invitation for self-reflection, and to mine our memorable moments for insights, meaning, and growth.  Check the website for a sample chapter, or see the reviews to get a flavor for the volume.  Follow me on Twitter, let’s be friends on Facebook :-)

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