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Thursday, September 22, 2011

Fall Equinox

September 23rd is the official Fall Equinox, which means we will have approximately the same amount of light (day time) as darkness (night time). It also marks the official end of summer and beginning of fall.  All that seems a bit too "official" for me.  I don't think humans can really "declare" a season over or another one beginning, so maybe we should just observe the changes and celebrate nature. I think that's more the spirit of what Fall Equinox is about, and has been in ancient traditions.

In many cultures, Fall Equinox is considered a time to celebrate the harvest. It's a way to acknowledge and give thanks for the gifts the earth has given us over the spring and summer months. It's also a time to consider the upcoming season of restfulness.

Summer seems a more social time. We tend to celebrate, have parties and get-to-gathers more often in the summer.  It's filled with that yellow energy of the sun and we often seem to match that energetic feeling, or at least think that we should. As fall approaches, many people get that "homesteading" or "nesting" feeling.  We start to withdraw a bit.  We consider indoor activities, and solitary pursuits. Fall and winter are a good match for Water Violet type personalities. I've written lots about Water Violet- it's a pretty common state and a helpful essence for sure. You can type "water violet" into the search feature for more information or go to this early post

During this Fall Equinox, we are in a waning Half moon phase. Seems very appropriate to me, as the waning moon is a time of letting go, and connecting with your inner self.  It'sa good time to really consider what's right for you and where you want to be heading as we move into the fall season. 

Equinox is the ultimate balance. It signifies equal sunrise and sunset, equal light and dark, the point right in the middle where peace resides and everything is accessible in equal measure. Perhaps it's that sense of balance that we should be celebrating.

If you had spent the spring and summer seasons planting, tending to, and harvesting crops, I think you'd be celebrating pretty "big time" right about now. If not for the fact that you had food for the winter, even just the fact that your work was done for a period of time! Because lets face it, all that gardening was hard work. And it probably created a bit of angst in there as well, wondering if you would get enough sun, or enough rain, bug  infestations, or just the right conditions for a good crop. By this point, it "is what it is" and nothing you could do about it so you might as well celebrate either a great harvest or at least just the fact that you can quit the work and worry.

People claim that we are removed from our food so we don't understand those cycles as well.  I see the merit of that argument, but I think it might be a bit in your perspective, and I doubt that everyone can just quit the office job and plant a garden. I think there's a good chance you've been working pretty hard. even if you weren't close to nature.  Maybe it wasn't work planting seeds, weeding rows, or picking potatoes, but if you've been attending meetings, logging overtime, churning out reports, pouring coffee, cooking food,  answering phones, changing diapers, playing with kids, or whatever it is you do, you've been working hard. And there's a good chance you've been doing that so you could "put food on the table", you just haven't been so directly involved in the process.  Maybe we cheat ourselves a bit in this cycle and loose the balance in the middle that suggests since you have been working hard, it's time to relax a bit. Celebrate what you have achieved, realize you have a good harvest, or at least stop for a moment to breathe and connect with yourself. Celebrate that peace in the middle.

In my mind, no good celebration occurs without a cake of some sort. The Chinese have a tradition of celebrating September or Fall Equinox by making moon cakes.  These are offerings to the moon.  If you need an easy recipe for moon cakes, check out what Melvin Moon has to say:  If you're working in some other capacity in order to be create your harvest- give yourself a break.  Better yet, give yourself a pat on the back and recognize the fact that you are preparing for winter.  Buy a cake on the way home!

Let go of work for a bit and celebrate a job well done. You've brought in the harvest- let go of your worries and celebrate your achievements!

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