“Spring passes and one remembers one’s innocence. Summer passes and one remembers one’s exuberance. Autumn passes and one remembers one’s reverence. Winter passes and one remembers one’s perseverance.”
I’m sure you’ve noticed that you feel differently with each season. It doesn’t matter what is going on in your particular circumstances, the seasons each bring a certain feeling. For example, think of December and holiday time. It’s just starting to get cold (unless you’re south of the equator when it’s starting to get warm). For me, I feel the holiday spirit and a warm, fuzzy anticipation. I spend more time with family and friends and nostalgia is an everyday occurrence.
It reminds me that no matter what the minutia in my life is, this feeling will return each year. It’s something I can depend on.
It’s a grounding feeling. Like, this too shall pass.
In the last few years, I have made a more conscious effort to try to remember this through all the seasons. My garden guides me. In the spring we plant and new life begins, every year the fresh earthy scent from the thaw and apple blossoms fill the air. In the summer, incredible growth makes my garden lush and filled with life and smells of herbs and flowers. Then in fall, some plants die off, and some hit a last spurt of growth. Animals scavange whatever they may find left to hoard for winter.
Take a moment to smell the roses, or the pine, or the spring buds. No matter what season it is, look around and see what still feels the same. Imagine that your ancestors also lived through these seasons, breathing the same scents, collecting the same fruit. The seasons bring us back to the same truth: there is a cycle to growth.
This is a lesson in coming back to importance and letting go.
I get the same feeling when standing next to the ocean. I feel like all the worries I have are insignificant when I think about how long the waves have been doing this same thing. I can’t always be near an ocean to do that, but I can take in the season it is.
Even in the winter, some days I’ll add a little sweet, hot tea and some buttery toast in the morning on the deck. Because that’s how my grandmother and I took in each morning when we had time. Will what I am worrying about today mean more than the feeling of having hot tea outside in 10, 20, or 30 years? If not, I let it go. Tradition doesn’t have to be boring, but it should bring you back to memories and feelings that keep you grounded and in line with your spirit. It helps us regroup when we are making new choices or inviting shift.
Think about how you can connect to the season in a grounded, centered way. Are there temporary circumstances you need to let go of? How can you bring some seasonal joy to each day?