“[T]hat old September feeling, left over from school days, of summer passing, vacation nearly done, obligations gathering, books and football in the air … Another fall, another turned page: there was something of jubilee in that annual autumnal beginning, as if last year’s mistakes had been wiped clean by summer.”
― Wallace Stegner, Angle of Repose
Are you as enthralled as I at watching the leaves release themselves in an exuberance of color at this time of year? I love it. I can’t get enough of that bright beauty of nature’s last hurrah of fall before release, dormancy and the quiet of winter sets in. I believe in eating with the seasons, but more than that, I believe in mirroring the seasons in how we live. Living seasonally allows us to not fight the forces of nature in our own nature.
Fall is a time to let go and to release. Nothing is permanent, everything is in change. We experience yearly the dormancy and hibernation of winter, the growth of life in spring, the profuse fertility of summer and now as the leaves fall we are reminded to let go and that “this too shall pass”—whatever “this” is as everything is impermanent and there is joy and bright exuberance in that living and release.
Of course, as such, we must live every day to its fullest, living into its impermanence. The Buddhist scholar Cynthia Kneen, in “Awake Mind, Open Heart” expresses this: “When you are brave and have an open heart, you have affection for this world — this sunlight, this other human being, this experience. You experience it nakedly, and when it touches your heart, you realize this world is very fleeting. So it is perfect to say ‘Hello means good-bye.’ And also, ‘My hope, hello again.’ ”
So in this fall season, what are you releasing? And what are you living into in this fleeting moment?