Seasons are wonderful. They are like a gift that can teach us so much, not only about the world around us but ourselves, too. The optimist embraces the change of the seasons and our culture has always recognised the significance of the equinoxes and solstices in the annual cycle.
Seasons are Nature’s rhythm, so let’s dance
Often, we associate November with gloom and dampness but this year in the UK, Nature is particularly glorious. Thanks to the hot summer, the colours of the leaves on the trees are now spectacular. Is this a hint that if we live a full life, our own autumn will be colourful? Perhaps not necessarily for all, but it does indicate how deeply the past affects the present. Always living fully in the present enhances not just life today but our future, too. For the pessimist, spring is too wet, summer too hot, autumn miserable and winter just too cold to be mentioned – life is just shades of grey. But if we embrace all seasons, both Mother Nature’s and our own, life will be like a kaleidoscope – a continuous play of colour and rhythm.
As our individual life goes through its phases, it is easy to see the correspondence with the seasons outside. The spring of youth and the summer of adulthood are full of energy. Seeking to prolong them is perfectly understandable. Knowing that these periods won’t last, people have been looking for the secret of eternal youth since time immemorial. Who can blame them? But internally we create resistance and interfere with the flow of energy through us. Instead of being happy with life, there is a cloud of dissatisfaction lurking in our hearts. In tai chi, which should be an effortless flow, our teachers will always find the knots of resistance in us. Gradually we learn to let go and practice becomes easier. The same applies in life. Outside, enjoy the seasons; inside, welcome the present with an open heart.
Much more on living in tune with life cycles is in The Great Little Book of Happiness.