The wind is whipping outside and the mild October weather we’ve been having here in Vermont is turning cold. Planting the elderberries this morning according to the biodynamic calendar, I was met with my first taste of sharp, chilly weather carried on a raging wind.
Yesterday was Samhain, the Celtic festival that marks the end of the harvest and the beginning of the winter season. The wheel of the cycles brings us inward for the opportunity to contemplate what has come before, what has been accomplished and what still needs tending.
I pondered that wisdom this week while working with a retreat client who has suffered with crippling anxiety for the better part of his life. We turned inward to look at his relationship with his parents and the events that created the mindset that has haunted him to this day. In looking backward toward what I call, the “origination point of the wound,” or what has come before, we were able to rescue those wounded parts of his psyche and bring them to a safe place within his heart.
The tending of his good soul moving forward will include his slow and steady learning of the 24-form Tai Chi art, which we both practiced together throughout the week. He left my home this morning with a pronounced appreciation for the timing of his visit, where now the integration of everything he received can take place gently over the winter season, preparing him for the rebirth of spring.
My favorite maxim of law says, “As a thing is bound, so it is unbound.” Whatever the issue, there is always remedy, there can’t not be. I tell everyone I work with that if they turn away from the present-day narratives and look to nature and the ancestors for help they will always receive it. And so, we in the northern hemisphere greet the coming of the winter months, the inward time where we are meant to slow down and contemplate our lives. It is in the slowing down where we can bring clarity to the mind and explore new avenues for healing and learning.
So, as the coziness of home beckons you inside this winter, take some time to learn something new from these computers that are so full of information. Perhaps an ancient practice like Tai Chi or Qi Gong will invite you to learn some movements that will deliver grounding, calm and clarity as well as physical strength and agility so that by spring you will be able to take that wherever you go, whatever the season.
Nature is the greatest teacher and we ignore her cycles at our peril. May the dark season’s embrace deliver wisdom, healing and understanding for all.
Slainte mhor agus a h-uile beannachd duibh! (Gaelic)
(Translation: Good health and every good blessing to you)!