Kriya Yoga the Sacred Seasons

Our annual Online Kriya Yoga Solstice Retreat begins on June 27th, 2024. I was recently asked if holding the retreat around the Solstices was a form of Sun worship! The short answer is yes. Where would we be without the Sun? The long answer is below, as it relates to yogic and astronomical anatomy.

I know you already have the details, but you can review the schedule of events for our online retreat on this link:

Celebrating the Equinoxes and Solstices

… as the Sun moves from the South Pole to the North Pole and then back down to the South Pole, in the course of one year, it is as if that Sun is ascending and descending through the chakras of the Earth. (One of the primary practices of Kriya Yoga meditation is moving our inner light up and down through the chakras.) It follows that one year of healthy living as described above, would result in a subtle positive change in our spiritual capacity. Being on Earth, and experiencing a year of life on Earth, as the Sun ascends and descends between the poles, rising and falling through the Earth’s chakras, our own chakras are influenced. What happens to the Earth happens to us, because we are not separate from it.

“If we could live on this Earth for a million years, with the natural movement of the Sun as it rises and falls in relationship to the Earth’s chakras, that influence on the Earth of our bodies and our inner chakras would result in Self-realization.” 

— From An Essential Guide to Kriya Yoga Practice, by Ryan Kurczak

The solstices and equinoxes have significant importance in many spiritual traditions due to their connection with the cycles of nature, which are often seen as reflective of spiritual and human experiences. This is due to the relationship of the Sun as the source of life, and the more metaphysical relationship of the Earth’s chakras to our own chakras.

The solstices and equinoxes mark the path of the Sun as it moves in relationship to the Earth. In yoga traditions, the Sun represents the inner light of our soul/consciousness. The Earth is the body.

The body has chakras, the Earth too has chakras. These are bands of energy that surround and interpenetrate the Earth. The Earth’s chakras are gravitational, thermal and electromagnetic forces created by the interaction of the Earth with the Sun. 


During the Northern Solstice the Sun is as close to the North Pole as possible. The North Pole is like the top of our body. Between the equator and the North Pole resides the higher chakras. During the Southern Solstice the Sun is as close to the South Pole as possible. From the equator to the South Pole reside the lower chakras.

During the Northern Solstice, the Sun is within the field of the 6th Chakra. This is an excellent time for spiritual celebrations or more intensive and enlivening spiritual practices, because the energy of the 6th Chakra is greater.

Northern Solstice (around June 21):

  • Abundance and Growth: This is a time to celebrate the fullness of life, abundance, and the peak of growth and spiritual energy.
  • Gratitude and Celebration: Many traditions have festivals to give thanks for the blessings of the earth, such as celebrations, which often involve dancing, feasting, and connecting with nature. The yogic view is that we can appreciate the energy as it reaches its zenith and direct it more fully within, for the purpose of greater awakening and realization.
  • Spiritual Enlightenment: This time is seen as one of heightened spiritual awareness and enlightenment due to the peak of the sun’s power, as it relates to the 6th chakra of the Earth. Remember, the top of the Earth is like the top of our bodies. During the Northern Solstice the light of the Sun shines with greater strength on the Earth’s higher chakras, because astronomically the Sun is shining more intensely on the North Pole.

Southern Solstice (around December 21):

  • Rebirth and Renewal: This time of the year is often associated with the return of the light. Many traditions celebrate the birth of gods or significant spiritual figures around this time, symbolizing hope and renewal.
  • Introspection and Inner Growth: This part of the year is seen as a time for deep reflection and inner work. It’s a period to contemplate one’s life and set intentions for the coming year. During the Southern Solstice, the Sun is within the field of the root chakra. This makes for an excellent time of contemplation, prayer, and intention setting. From here, the Sun being as far South as it can go, the energy can only go up and ascend again through the chakras.


The equinoxes mark the times of the year when day and night are of equal length, symbolizing balance and harmony. They are also times of change in the dominant direction of our internal life force, or prana. Sri Yukteswar would hold festivals during the Equinox because of this balanced energy within nature.  This is why our Kriya Yoga Apprenticeship Retreats are held during the equinox.

Northern Equinox (around March 21):

  • Rebirth and New Beginnings: This period is associated with the awakening of the higher chakras. The Sun enters Tropical Aries, which is the positive polarity of the third chakra. The energy has ascended up from the 1st chakra (Tropical Capricorn/Aquarius) and the 2nd chakra (Tropical Pisces). It’s a time for planting seeds and for taking new actions for our spiritual life.
  • Balance and Harmony: The equal length of day and night represents a moment of balance, encouraging individuals to find balance in their own lives.
  • Festivals and Rituals: Celebrations like Ostara (which later became Easter) in Pagan traditions often involve themes of fertility, growth, and renewal, with rituals focusing on planting and new beginnings. Holi celebrated in India and Nepal, represents the blossoming of love. It is also an invocation for a good harvest season.
  • Metaphysical Indications: Due to the light of the Sun energizing the third chakra, this is an excellent time for taking decisive action or making plans for improved well-being. The prana and life force of our bodies are ascending through the chakras towards the 6th chakra at this time.

Southern Equinox (around September 21):

  • Harvest and Gratitude: This time is associated with the harvest and giving thanks for the abundance of our lives. It’s a period to reflect and share.  During the Southern Equinox, the Sun enters Tropical Libra. This is the positive polarity of the 4th chakra. It is a time to share the blessings within our lives with the love of the heart chakra.
  • Letting Go and Transformation: The Sun is moving back down through the chakras. It’s a time for letting go of what no longer serves and for transformation, both in nature and in one’s personal life.
  • Festivals and Rituals: Celebrations like Mabon in Pagan traditions involve giving thanks and enjoying the fruits of the harvest, with rituals that emphasize gratitude and preparation for the becoming more internal as the energy of our bodies follows the energy of the Sun downward into the lower chakras. Harvest festivals in various Christian traditions occur at this time. Navaratri is a festival which lasts several days near the Southern Equinox. The festival honors the divine feminine Devi (Durga) and falls in the months of September and October.
  • Metaphysical Indications: During the Southern Equinox our prana is being pulled naturally downward and within. The Northern Equinox is about new creations, ideas and activities. The Southern Equinox is about consolidating and refining the growth of the year. By around October 20th, the Sun is entering Tropical Scorpio, the negative polarity of the 3rd chakra. The positive polarity of the 3rd chakra (March 21, Sign of Aries) is about creation, forming something new. The negative polarity of the 3rd chakra (October 20, Sign of Scorpio) is about sharpening, honing, refining and consolidating what has already been created.

Universal Themes

Across different cultures and spiritual traditions, the solstices and equinoxes represent universal themes of life, death, and rebirth. They are times to connect with the cycles of nature, to honor the rhythms of life, and to align oneself with the natural world. Whether through festivals, rituals, retreats or personal reflection, these astronomical events provide a framework for spiritual practice and growth.

The universality of themes throughout spiritual celebrations is related to the underlying metaphysical relationship of the Sun to the Earth. The power of spiritual holidays and celebrations is due to the power of the chakras which are most enlivened depending on the position of the Sun to the Earth throughout the year. This is also why we hold retreats and special times of reflection in the Kriya Yoga tradition around the Solstices and Equinoxes.

Support Provided by Kriya Yoga Online Patreon Members. Join the Kriya Yoga Online Patreon Community to support this Kriya Yoga Ministry. Kriya Yoga Online Patreon members receive early invitations to retreats and events, a monthly audio/video lesson, and are welcome to participate in a monthly online Q&A session. 

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