As our joyous festival season wanes and we approach winter, I look at the 3 Festival framework as a blueprint for what territory I am leaving and entering. It has been described by many that Pesach in spring is akin to the Creation time of a nation forming, of young love blossoming; we read the 'Song of Songs' and herein seeds are planted for living on earth in a liberated state of love. In this light Shavuos is often described as the time of epiphany when revelation occurs at Sinai. In this time humans are taught the responsibility that comes with love when within a social context. This time when we read the 'Book of Ruth,' has been related to the phase of adulthood when tending the garden full of seeds supports its blossoming offerings. Continuing on to Sukkos, we experience redemption as we complete the harvest. We read 'Ecclesiastes' and are in a wise state of elderhood in which the season of death approaches.
So now as I reflect on the seeds planted at Pesach, nurtured at Shavuos, and harvested at Sukkos I ask: how am I going to distribute this abundance? How am I going to make it last through the long winter? What seeds can I save and store properly for spring's planting? How can I tuck in the garden with nourishing compost and mulch to allow it to rest/rejuvenate comfortably and deeply? What nuggets can I feed the microbial community to help them endure the winter in good form? While the literal level of these questions did guide me these past moons in how I thanked and put my garden to sleep, dried herbs, preserved crops, made medicine, bottled up seed, prepared communal meals.. they also guided me to sleep more, meditate longer, be more discerning about when I use the computer, play more music, take more care in the manner how tasks are accomplished rather than how many tasks are accomplished. I know this is only the beginning.
A recent article entitled 'The Ordinary Decency of the Heart,' in Rowe Center's The Center Post, describes in an interview with Andrew Harvey the fine line between mysticism and activism. This nebulous space where naked forest sinusiums and blazing understory overlap, where spiritual connection and good deeds in the material plane radiate from, where planting and harvesting emerge, where work and rest mirror each other, I am reminded of wise words from somewhere (not sure the source) that said, 'how we do anything is how we do everything.' So at this crossroads I am realizing the following truths for me at this time: more time on the cushion means more efficient and kinder service in the world, more dreaming time allows for more spacious creativity in my work, a renewed dedication to nurturing the village is going to be more effective than trying to heal the empire, when I can be kinder & gentler with my self of selves I can be more compassionate and present for others...
Thank you for reading these raw, though partially digested or fermented ponderings, full of probiotics:) I bless you with spaciousness to reflect on your seasonal journey and nourishment to consciously venture forth according to your soul's wisdom. Shalohm.