My life has taken a sudden turn, mimicking the change in the cycles of nature. It is autumn here and I have slowed down. Just like the trees respond to nature and begin to slow down in autumn, shedding their leaves and drawing their sap inwards I am doing the same thing. I don’t have a schedule that tells me to do this I just naturally follow these cycles as well. As the sun comes up later I wake up later, and as the sun goes down earlier I too find that it signifies to me to slow down in my activities. It is a time when I look inward; I don’t look to what other people are doing to get my guidance I investigate and observe my own soul and what I have been doing. I hold myself accountable for my own actions.
At this time of the year I also have a seasonal hay fever that affects my sinuses and eyes and so I become less energetic and enthusiastic about life. It is in this time that I begin to draw down into myself like the trees. I do this by slowing down, reading more, deep reflection of my life’s actions and seeing less people. I dream relevant dreams that speak to me. It is the beginning of my quiet time of the year. I work in the garden more, working along with nature, preparing the soil and plants. I watch the birds visiting my garden and I feel one with my garden and its inhabitants. I have a growing sense of gratitude and appreciating for what my garden has produced and a sense of anticipation for what will come in spring after the winter has gone.
This year a new interest in my family, my ancestors and their cultures was awakened in me. I began to create a family tree and read up on the history of my personal families and of the history that would have affected them. I considered my roots both modest and unpretentious on the one hand, and brave and presumptuous on the other hand, their legacies they offered me much to reflect on. I started a deep reflection of my family’s past as I began to study Afrikaans. It has been a deeply enriching time for me and I have had many personal moments of reflection and appreciation for the generations that contributed to all that I am. It is both humbling and emboldening but I am aware that I am responsible for all my own actions and choices I make. I encourage you to consider exploring your family heritage. It is much more enriching for you to discover more about your own families than to read about mine.
My Artistic Flow
For those of you who follow my artistic endeavors with a special interest you will notice that my life-force has ebbed and the flow trickles slowly at the moment. I think it is especially important to follow this flow and honor it rather than forcing creativity just for the sake of expectations, either mine or yours. I had mentioned that I was going to have a special art day tomorrow meditating in the forest but life circumstances changed and that is no longer happening tomorrow. I have instead attended an online world summit on soil regeneration for the last week which has been inspiring and very valuable.
Today, 21st March, is International Forest day.
Biodiversity and sustainable development are very important, not only for the forests but for each individual on earth. This year’s theme is “forest restoration: a path to recovery and well-being.” This recovery and well-being is as important on the large scale worldwide as it is for each one of us. We could reflect upon what is happening in the world and how we affect climate change through our actions or we could consider our own behavior and how it affects us internally. Emotionally we have soil that needs preparing and protecting. We have cycles that ebb and flow through the rise and fall of energy. The idea is to learn to observe these energy flows and respect the ebb and flow.
We have personal growth cycles as well as communal growth cycles and the earth has its own cycles too. Consider metaphorically:
- Where does your soil need regeneration?
- How does it need regenerating? More or less sun (energy), more or less flow (water) places that need to decompose,
- Do you need more space for “air” to breathe, or places that need to lie fallow and rest for a while? We all need to breathe: there’s an in breath, a rest, an out breath and a rest; your heart beats by resting in-between. We need to build in rests in our life activities too.
- Do you need places for growing, areas that need more “organic waste” added – these are places for reflecting on how you can learn from your life. (These are the questions I think about and ask as I inhabit the forest spaces literally and figuratively. )
- What season are you in? Are you in “Spring” with life emerging through your work and interests.
- Or are you in Autumn where you need to slow down and rest? (These are the questions I reflect on as I live through the cycles of nature)
I’d like to leave you with this link
Take care, till next time.