Autumn Equinox is tonight, Wednesday September 23, 2015. Equinox comes from Latin words 'equi' for equal, and 'nox' for night. It literally means equal night. It is one of two days a year, when the night and daylight hours are balanced. Fall Equinoxes invite longer nights as summer slips away. While night and day hours are officially equal on September 26, the sun is perfectly at the equator today. This is the tipping point.
Despite the coming darkness - or perhaps because of it - this is a satisfying time. Summer harvest is in, Summer bounty is fresh and there's finally time to rest after the toils of dust and dirt. The work we began during the Vernal Equinox has come to fruition and as the Earth itself begins moving inward preparing for cooler Winter months. The leafs change colour and the air gets crisp. We begin accepting that the soil, which has worked so hard for us all Summer, is ready to rest. All this is welcome however, because the pantries are full, the sweaters cozy, and we're ready for the break as well.
As the Earth begins to move inward, so do we.
Some ways we can invite Fall in:
1) Freshen your alter to represent the season. Press dry leafs as the colours change; Bring in golds, oranges, and browns. Consider making a wreath or offerings of apples or ornamental squash.
2) Meditate on balance. Reflect on the ways you can bring balance into your life. Make a list on the following four categories: mind, body, spirit, and heart and where you can create space to grow. Are you living in your mind? Are the wheels always turning, obsessing? Have you closed your heart? Have you forgotten to pray? Are you watching too much t.v and forgetting to read? Are you connected to breathe? Exercise? Eating well? Bring it in, be honest, and welcome the quiet opportunities to sustain change.
3) Pray for peace. Peace for your city, your neighbourhood, your family, the world, the universe...and especially, for yourself. Part of balance is peace. Peace of mind. Peace of heart, peace in the spirit, and peace in the depth of your being.
4) Find your gratitude. Create a list of what you'd like to invite to your life with the shift in energy. Give thanks for all you have to be thankful for.
5) Embrace the darkness. People are often afraid of the dark. Like the Equinox, we are both made of light and dark. It's easy for most of us to embrace the light. It's 'light', easy, flirty, and fun. It's all our pretty, shinny bits. We welcome it, adore it, and fight for it. The dark, we tend to struggle with. It's where the challenging pieces of our hearts live. It's the insecurity, the jealousy, and the anger. These scare us because we've been taught to believe they are 'wrong' or 'bad'. We forget that it is in the shadow that mystery resides, where seduction lives, where the night-crawlers make their home. It is in the darkness that we grow and evolve. What parts of your darkness have you rejected? What of your self do you avoid? How can you begin to integrate these and accept them? When you reject your darkness, you reject yourself. You cannot be a whole and balanced person without these parts. How can these dark pieces be brought into the light?
These are just a few ideas to bring in the new season. Make it your own and follow your intuition. There are no hard and fast rules when it comes to ceremony. There are as many ways to celebrate as there are people. My personal focus is going to be number two, bringing balance to my life in the most accepting, loving way possible.
Wish me luck.