Today, our weather in the Midwest is inching slowly toward Winter. Mother Nature seemed to linger, this year, in the summer heat, as though she were grasping for just one more moment of sun and warmth before opening the veil into Winter. In Missouri, our trees are surely a demonstration of change with displays of blazing leaves as though on fire, or the deep colors of sienna and gold that remind us of our earthly upbringing. Then, once the last leaf has fallen and the squirrels have crawled into their condos high in the branches, a lull seems to drift into the air. The quickening of Winter is upon is.
My consciousness during this time seems to flow with Mother Nature, as well. I seem to take more time to plan meals, settle down for the evening, perhaps with a candle or a hot mug of tea. It is a time of going within to reflect on the “Summer mind.” The Summer mind has been active with thoughts of vacations, being outside and interacting with people, almost daily. Outdoor activities, barbecues, the ability to just hop in your car without bundling up or taking provisions in case you get stuck in the snow. This reflection is nice. It helps me be gracious for the seasons I experience in the Midwest.
I realize in my thoughts that my life is much like the seasons. The peaks and valleys of change, the cycles of change and the way I react to these flows of change. Today, I look in the mirror and see a much grayer me than I saw last year. I am more humble than the last year, and much wiser. Some may become depressed with these thoughts of growing older or, perhaps seemingly going nowhere in life. But, I can say that there is purpose in every single soul on this planet, every rock, every broken twig and every cry for mercy. As humans we continually grasp to try to understand the world and our own purpose. Going deep within ourselves is helpful to, at least, understand ourselves, and may lend further understanding to the world around us. This might be an intimidating task to some, but they will still try to connect in their own ways. It is not always easy, but good meditation, or contemplative prayer, can be accomplished with practice if one is truly committed to it.
Our great spiritual leaders knew this path and, selflessly and lovingly, taught it to others to learn love of their Creator and self and, use this love to reach out to their fellow man, woman and child. Their mission was to help the world find their soul purpose toward inner peace, helping each other, loving each other and experiencing life together. Spiritual leaders continue to strive for this same message, today.
When we meditate, we come closer to our Creator to hear our soul message. As we sit quietly, without distraction, we are able to hear our mortal self breathing, take notice of our surroundings, smell the air, touch our skin, and feel our humanness. Reach out to the Creator to ask for his/her loving connection. Calm the mind. As the buzz of thoughts come drifting through (and they will), push them into an imaginary bubble and send them off into the air to address another time. Soon there will be a thought that is not so easily dismissed. That is the one you snag. Grasp it with your mind. Why is it there? Is it shame? Is it anxiety? Is it happiness? Sit with it. Examine it. Ask the Creator for guidance in finding its origin. This may become an emotional moment of release (so have come tissues nearby). You may want to journal your experience.
When finding the emotion and its origin, one begins to heal the issue that was persistent in staying. This is the art of going deep into meditation. It is a process and it can heal at the soul level. Sometimes it is necessary to use guided meditation or music to help me get there. But, once I have embraced, I feel a release that makes me feel so empowered. With each meditation a new emotion may arrive, as though it were a teacher for me to learn by.
I have found that when I practice meditation, my day is so much calmer and I am so much more aware of the people and things around me. My day seems to go better. But wait, what about my soul’s purpose and all that jazz that is supposed to come with meditation?
Thank you for humoring me through this writing to explain my path! Once I understood the process of meditation (and I am by no means an expert or proficient), I wanted more. I used aromatherapy (incense, essential oils), music, motion, singing (aka toning), chanting, contemplative prayer and other methods to carry my mind to a deeper experience. Through consistent meditation, I was able to find my soul’s purpose of helping others with healing. A pretty huge undertaking, as I was even surprised. Healing is a broad spectrum of responsibility! It did not come to me like a man sitting in a cloud and shouting down, “you will be a healer!” It wasn’t even a voice. It was a very subtle feeling that overcame me and was consistent in nearly every meditation. It became a part of my feeling and being. I can’t explain it more than that. But, I can say that the feeling felt very humbling, yet empowering. I felt that I could conquer anything that came my way,and handle it with a strong sense of resilience.
During this Autumn, use Mother Nature’s changes to go within as she covers the earth with leaves and snow. Sit by the fire or in a warm snuggly spot and mediate or pray for 20 minutes – even if it is only once or twice per week. You will find out things about yourself that you didn’t know. I hope you will experience the wonders of meditation, as have I. There are many websites on meditation. Take advantage of them and fly (no pun intended for Halloween, of course)!
I wish you a most rewarding and empowering Autumn!