Today is the Autumn Equinox, the first day of fall & in Alberta. Fall weather came with a thud a couple of weeks ago, temperature changed, it's cold, it getting darker day by day. On this day there is equal amount of light as darkness, a pause if you will, before there is more darkness than light. We get sad this time of year, as we know the warm days are waning & soon we will be bundling up again against the cold. But can you see it differently?
I always think of this time of year, as a break from all the doing. A time to transition to a more inward focus. Don't get me wrong, I love the warmer months & all we get to do, but part of me feels as if I am taking a deep sigh as I see the darkness coming to blanket me. Permission to curl up on the couch with my kids & get a cuddle or time to give back to myself.
Look at nature to see how it responds, trees leaves are changing so they can prepare for the tougher weather ahead. The season of growing is done & we harvest of what we planted, storing our bounty up for the winter to come. As we enjoyed our outward lives of Spring & Summer, we now need to embrace the slowing down of life & enjoy taking time in a more restful way.
September for many of us is a very busy time as we return back to our busy schedules at work, kids to school, our routines are back & with that the stress. Instead of keeping going at this breakneck speed, in the next few weeks, take the time to begin to find more stillness in your life. To become more reflective & present, so you can choose what is important to do & what you can let go of.
Every year around this time, I see how our culture fights this slowing down by creating busyness. No sooner are our kids back in school, the focus of holidays like Halloween & Christmas begin to occupy our time. These are fun things, but I encourage us not to become so distracted by the doing that so we miss the opportunities to BE.
I have had a picture in my head from what I had read in The Presence Process by Michael Brown. A book I'm working on in my own practice. He says picture a jar filled with oil & water. The oil represents the sum of our physical, mental & emotional experiences & the water our Authentic Being, or True Nature.
Most of us spend our days shaking up the jar, mixing up the oil & water, trying to change our circumstances. We are reacting to life in this moment by taking beliefs from the past, or expectations for the future to deal with now.
If we stop doing & let the jar be, we see will see the water settle to the bottom & the oil rise to the top. We can then respond to what we are experiencing in the moment, without the baggage. Instead, listening to our own wisdom to help us decide the right thing to do, consciously with what is rising up.
In the stillness we can allow our past physical, mental, & emotional charge come to the surface (the oil) & our True Nature becomes clearer (the water). By choosing to let the jar be, waiting till the oil & water separates, we can see what is really there & consciously choose what to do about what is happening NOW.
In this way, we can be present to patterns that are coming to the surface & addressing them in the moment we experience them. Allow them to change, & over time to even to be released. The layer of oil becomes thinner (emotional charge) & we see more of the water (Self).
So, in these stressful times, don't we deserve some time to find solace in the stillness. You are safe no matter what arises in this exploration, just come back to your breath, again & again & again.... If at times it feels overwhelming, picture a safe place, full of peace & love. Stay here & when you are ready to be with your sensations, take the bridge of the breath back into the body & feel.
A simple mantra that can help, that is similar to one I spoke of in previous posts
(I AM HERE NOW IN THIS),
is SO HAM. In sanskrit this loosely translates as I AM THAT I AM. What more can we ask but to be our Trues Self. This Self, by it's nature is everything we ever hope to be, we already are
IN THIS MOMENT that MATTERS.
As the dark wains, go inside your self & allow your own Light to shine brightly & you will find you way.
Anne Cox E-RYT 500