Resolution, Revolution, Ritual: the last in a three part series by Karin Carlson

Resolution Ritual

Resolution, Ritual, REVOLUTION

It’s nearing the end of January. The dawns are so deep they break to ink blue. Stars are sharp. To say nothing whatsoever of the cold.

Only that it’s a hard kind of season. It’s a difficult time of year.

Resolution, Revolution, Ritual. Now that 97% of the human population has trashed, dismissed, or diminished their New Year’s Resolutions, I want to talk about them. 

This is the final piece in a three part series by Karin Carlson.

Ritual redeems us like a coupon.  

Love, it says, is possible. Even though we doubt. Doubt, it says, is workable, because we still love.

Ritual heals us. Which is what we’ve needed year after year. It’s what we all, need. It’s time for us as a society to focus on healing. There’s no task of greater importance and no undertaking that could be more profound.  

Now is the time for us to finally heal the painful legacy of racism, the lineage of patriarchy, the division between the wealthy and the poor. Now is the time to seriously take on the task of healing the environment. It’s time for us to heal a broken educational system. It’s time to heal an antiquated disease care model that poses as a health care system. We have to address the ill health and depression that affects fifty percent of the world’s population. We have to address the cost and the suffering laid on families and see the stress that comes of not getting essential things right.

I suppose what I’m suggesting amounts to a revolution.

RevolutionI mean social justice. I mean public wealth. I mean human rights and acknowledging the staggering beauty and urgent role of science before our policies do irreparable harm.  

A Revolution of Healing

The gyst of such a revolution would be individuals healing themselves and the people they come in contact with. It will spread until our halls of power are brown and feminine. Our governors won’t descend from fraternities but rise from immigrant families and we’ll support them. This revolution will enrich our economy and restore wounded dignity and we’ll celebrate it. We can promote a revolution based on healing instead of the band-aid of suppressing. We can call shame culture and bullying culture out as being the same culture. This healing will look for wholeness in our fragmented society and this shift will benefit everyone, every last one, in society.  

Like any revolution this won’t come from government. It will come from individuals. It will come from us.  

The need is clear. The way is clear. Your soul longs for it and the world is so ready for it.  

I’m not asking for utopia.

I’m speaking directly to the way things are. Things don’t have to be this way.  

There is an emptiness to mid January. It stands in all the doorways. It’s rubbed people’s cheeks to raw. We’re depleted but expected to go on. Lean in to ritual as both balm and sugar. It’s a fire and it’s a song. It’s important, and it’s something we already know how to do. Sankalpa is like that. It’s proof that we already and always have cared. We fill emptiness with love.

Karin Carlson Resolution, Revolution, RitualKarin was an anthropologist, a barmaid, and a journalist before she bottomed out. Yoga saved her; she figures it might help others.  Karin’s teaching in jails, crisis centers, and church basements became a non-profit in 2007. Based in St. Cloud, MN, discover and practice with Karin online in her Collections for Gather Yoga or at

Featured Photos by Karin Carlson, Daniele Salutari and Ina Soulis on Unsplash 

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