Late August and late summer days can be glorious. As September moves in, the light changes to a more golden glow and Indian summer sunny skies have a deeper hue. The air seems softer, the breeze fresher. In the garden there is a ripeness and mellowness not there earlier in the year.
But the days are growing shorter now and some of us may look forward with dread, feeling the impact of the shrinking light. Others still will count the days till the earth stands still once more at the winter solstice. With age this can become more acute, a metaphor for our own shrinking light.
Older societies lived in tune with the rhythms of the seasons, especially those that worked the land. Nature’s cycle could not be ignored, whether out in the field or at home within the family. The harsh realities of this can be seen in our historical stories. The modern world by contrast, with its 24 hour shopping, unseasonal food in packets and unceasing electronic ‘connection’ is removing us from this experience. Technology is making us blind to space and time. We can get caught in endless days of sameness.
The weather impacts on most of us in one way or another but if we are able to tune in to the earth’s cycle and seasons, it can become easier to know and accept our own nature, and the inevitable birth and death and struggle of life.
At certain moments it is right to pull back, retreat into ourselves, reflect upon our lives and contemplate our future. Later it will be right to burst with energy, push forward with hope and a desire for something new.
It is easy to forget that we are part of nature with our rhythms and cycles. Life can never be a linear pattern of sameness, without shifts, twists and turns. If we can learn to work with this truth, make space for mourning, for loss, for what is gone, we clear a space for potential, for wisdom, for what we are yet to become.
Even though nature is turning towards autumn and the sleep ahead, all around us there is creation and new beginnings. September marks the start of new cycles which will bring a sense of hope and excitement about the future. The summer is over. We are refreshed, renewed and ready to make promises to start all over again. There are new places to be, new people to know and new life to live.
Every ending is the start of something new.