Sunshine and heightened consciousness seem to go together. Spring is here and it seems people are apt to offer a smile to everyone they see. It’s as if springtime encourages all of us to be more conscious of our inter-connectedness, one to another. It’s at this time of year our thoughts turn to Mother Nature and an increased awareness of the little things we can do to support and acknowledge all the blessing she provides.
Cultures around the world have marked the importance of both the spring and fall equinox. These magical times are when there is perfect balance between light and dark. Some cultures have labelled light good and dark evil and have used the annual cycle as being symbolic of the eternal struggle between goodness and evil. This may have been due to the spring equinox having a higher energy which is so easy to feel, as it marks the approaching new life and creativity. The fall equinox has a heavier energy as it marks the approach of decline and the end of a whole creative cycle.
It doesn’t matter where we look. Ritual marks all cultures, whether its First Nations, Celts, Persians, Chinese, Indians of the subcontinent or Christians. The coming of spring has been marked by some form of ritual since earliest times.
For the majority of people, it is the shifting of the relationship between the sun and the earth that marks the core reason for this cycle. As a result, the majority of cultures have deified both the sun and the moon. The names may have changed according to the various cultures but what the names signified remained the same. For example, the Druidic followers use the images of the Green Man and Mother Earth to symbolize the fertility of this cycle.
For the Christians, this is a time to mark the promise of new life through the resurrection of Christ. Although Christians do not embrace a female symbol of creativity, they have retained some of the ancient symbols used by earlier pagan cultures to mark the promise of new life. For example the very name they have chosen to mark this astronomical cycle, shown by the sun and earth relationship, comes from the name of the Saxon goddess Eostra. This fertility goddess was symbolized by an egg, representing fertilization, and the hare as a symbol of high fertility. Today Christians still use chocolate bunnies and cream filled eggs to symbolize the commercial side of the festival called Easter
Basically, it doesn’t matter how this natural cycle is marked, nor does it matter what we call it. What matters is to approach this period with full consciousness. It is almost as if we are being given another chance to refresh ourselves. If we do, by the next equinox which occurs in September, we will have a bountiful harvest.
Take the time to feel this energy within yourself. The next sunny day, give yourself the gift of feeling the sun on your skin. Feel the surge of energy that will accompany the warmth. Take the time to breathe deeply and you will smell the promise of new life in the air.
The more we are able to give ourselves these opportunities, the more conscious we will become of how we function throughout our days. We’ll also become more conscious of the importance of supporting mother earth. What are the ways we can help to make her task of supplying us with blessings easier?
To start with, one of the ways we can pay our respect would be to make some serious choices about the fertilizers to be used in the garden. Some people will have been gathering their fertilizer all winter in the form of compost. For those people who didn’t begin composting last fall, it’s never too late to start. Compost isn’t the only healthy or supportive method to fertilizer our gardens. Fish compost is another. Seaweed, so easy for all of us living on the Island to access, may be one of the finest fertilizers we could hope to get.
If we don’t have our own gardens, the next thing we can do is support the farmer’s markets, especially those people who grow organically. Yes, we will be paying a bit more for vegetables with flavor than we would have to pay for vegetables with no flavor and limited food value. So, in the long run, we would not only be helping mother earth, but the people who are willing to devote their labor to growing foods that will really sustain our bodies.
On a personal note, consider starting a new family tradition. Create your own ritual to welcome spring. The conscious awareness of the cycles of time can add a depth of appreciation to our lives.
So, let’s all get out there and enjoy the sun, the smells and the promise of new life. Take a sketch pad and plan a garden. Celebrate this glorious season with the full awareness of how important this part of the year will always be. It doesn’t matter what we call it or how we celebrate it, the light really is coming and that is all that counts. Is that a smile forming on your face?
This entry was posted on Sunday, March 2nd, 2008 at 7:15 pm and is filed under SPIRIT. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.