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Navigating This Season of Change

It’s October and the leaves are changing. The earth knows what to do when the sun shifts in the sky and the temperature begins to cool. Her instincts are wired to the cycles and rhythms of the entire universe, and working together, all systems on planet Earth coordinate their responses to each others prompts. Everything is connected here and nothing exists separate and apart from the whole. Nature is interdependent, and we are part of Nature. Have we forgotten our interconnectedness?

This year we have seen human beings all over the world hunker down to shield and protect ourselves from an invisible force of Nature, the COVID-19 coronavirus. How something so small can mount such an attack on a population of humans is astounding. We stand in awe of such power as we gather ourselves in our homes, restricting our exposure to one another, and making the best of a grim situation. What started out as a year of incredible promise – the beginning of a new decade – quickly turned into the unfathomable.

Nature is taking matters into her own hands. We need look no further than the fires that are ravaging parts of the West Coast, leaving thousands of people and animals to face a stark reality. The same devastation is facing people the world over as the effects of a warming climate takes root, shifting our expectations and our perspectives about how to adjust to a changing planet.

In the midst of this global pandemic, we are all faced with the dissolution of the world we knew, and saddest of all, having to say goodbye to so many loved ones who are transitioning from this life to the next as part of this season of change. In our grief, we are reminded that life is fleeting. The privilege of inhaling and exhaling, a steady continuous heart beat, a mind that can think and reason is brought to the forefront where once it was just a given – taken for granted.

As I think about the ways we have been affected, the ripple effects of the on-going struggle to survive the pandemic, climate change, inequality, injustice, economic disaster and disharmony is showing itself in the faces of those who stand and watch their loved ones die. It is in the bellies of those who feel the grip of anxiety as livelihoods, jobs, and businesses stall or fall. It is in the desperation of those who march for equality and justice after witnessing repeatedly the continuing apathy of those in power who reject calls for change and seek to silence the voices who cry out for compassionate understanding. Rising tides of violence, extremists, mis-information, dis-information, propaganda designed to drive a wedge between people, the raw, unfiltered rage spewing from every corner is the symptom of a much deeper infection. There’s no vaccine for what truly ails us now.

To navigate this season of change, we need do no more than look within to the core of our being to find the stillness that always was and always will be. Think about it from this perspective. The world is changing and we are changing with it. Our bodies and our minds are changing constantly, adapting to what we choose to consume. We consume information, energy, nutrients and we make choices. We choose what to do with our energy and our information and what to do with our bodies, our voices.

Change pokes us and pushes us into action, out of indifference, out of unconsciousness. We have to be awake. We have choices to make. And where we feel we can make a difference, it is incumbent upon us to take action to put our energy into something good and useful. Come back to the stability of the stillness that is at our core. Re-center from there as often as is needed. Then, take action. Make one choice today that improves someone else’s life. Do something nice or helpful for someone. Put your worry away and take action now because while the body and mind can and do change, the spirit remains unchanged. It is the rock upon which all else is built. And if we struggle to connect with that part of ourselves, all we need to do is become still and silent, then take in the sights, sounds and scents of Nature. Let Her hold you for a little while. Mother knows what we need and she abundantly supplies it: Spiritual cognizance – the recollection of our interconnectedness.

Become aware of yourself as a spiritual being and lean into it with the expectation that what you need right now is available. Then be thankful, even before you see evidence of the need being met. Know it to be available. Trust that it is at this very moment working its way to you somehow. Then do something nice for someone, or for the earth, or for yourself. Get back to that stable platform and stand ready for anything knowing you are grounded in peace and love at all times.