WHAT I LEARNED IN DARKNESS
Tonight we will set our clocks back one hour as part of Daylight Savings Time. By setting our clocks back in November we maximize our schedules around available sunlight. This strange practice also happens in March when clocks are advanced one hour. The history of daylight savings time goes back to the early 1900’s when it was enacted as a way to conserve fuel used for lighting. Daylight Savings Time was experimented with but not uniformly adapted. There were times when some cities would practice Daylight Savings Time while others did not. It brought great confusion to railroads that needed to keep track of varying times and schedules.
Our electric age reduces the difference between night and day. We have people who are awake all night at work surrounded by light and people who need to create a dark space in the day to sleep.
As a child, I remember the dark as being something fearful. Lying in my dark bedroom or going outside without a well-lit view would raise my fears. I imagined a reality in the darkness that I was safe from during daylight.
It was probably during adolescence when I began to be comfortable with the darkness. Instead of being alone in my bedroom, I had friends that I would sometimes sneak out with, play hiding games on youth retreats and hold a girl’s hand on a dark night walk. Darkness became a means of gaining independence, conquering fear and learning to hide.
Mostly harmless kid stuff here… but, there is another kind of light and darkness not based on the earth’s orbital path around the sun. There is a darkness and light of the spirit. We have the inwardly glowing city of Heaven and the outer darkness and torment of Hell. In that domain of dark and light, people gravitate longingly toward one or the other… lovers of darkness and lovers of light.