An Ode to the Seasons of our Souls
(Written on the road in New Mexico, October 2018)
The leaves of the cottonwoods are turning. There is a chill in the air; dusk is coming early. The first night stars emerge as we walk the old road home. Hues of amber, golden and soft, fly like pollen in the wind.
We feel a tug at our edges, slowly drawing us out of the euphoric, igniting energy held within the summer of our lives. We achieved, we succeeded, we expanded, we came home bearing glorious gifts. But there is a sense here, now… Autumn is settling in. All around, slender and dignified trees are shedding golden fluttering leaves, and inside, our hearts know fire is turning to ember. Our lungs breathe in newfound tones of nostalgia, of melancholy. There is a sadness in the breeze.
How do we choose to respond to the transition of our internal seasons? Is there a sense of resistance? An almost desperate clinging on to the heat of summer? Remember though — sadness is sacred too. It is a homecoming. It takes our hands gently, firmly, and tells us, look here, look beyond the veils of ambition into your most intimate self.
Sadness and grief breed discernment, and discernment is the beginning of the end of our self-alienation. Authenticity births. Soaring from one towering ambition to the next, without embracing the seasons of our souls, we are lured into a false ambition, an externally imposed ambition, an ambition that exists in the eyes of others that is not an honest reflection of the exquisite obsidian pools of our inner waters. We need space, we need sadness, to become intimate with who we really are. Through our tears, we suddenly become reliable to ourselves and fecundate soil for things to grow in places we didn’t even know were there.
Look at the trees. They know. Look how they stand strong and gracious, brilliantly naked in the first icy breaths of winter. We would be foolish to think we were not also born to honor the ecology of our emotions. To realize how dependent we are on the seasons that came before, flowing into each other with tremendous grace.
Thus, we surrender — not in a state of collapse, but in the most refined and beautiful of understandings that true surrender is strength, an expression of Eros, a fundamental knowing and being of our co-dependency with all life and with every ebb and flow. We are bound to each other, to every moment and to every emotion. We are swept up, tugged and dangled in supreme acceptance and dizzying reciprocity of the what-could-be, the-what-lies-there, the unknown. The meaning of our mutual existence is contained within the singing of the seasons of our soul.
In naked vulnerability, we become sculptural. We can be noble in this state and sink ever deeper. Rodin did not carve rigid and linear limbs, taught with self-assuredness and control; he honored every contortion, each shadow, the twisted, the authentically sensual and yearning of the self.
Hold out your hand to another human being, in full awareness of that sensuality and courage. Be trained for the hit to come — or not to come. Perhaps that space, that loneliness, is even more haunting. Allow for a moment of suspension in the void. Now — there is a sculpture to be worshipped. The space between giving and receiving is a necessary recess. Fear is only paralyzing when one does not trust the totality of life’s experience — and it is in our grief that we sense into that totality and become intimate with our heart’s deepest chambers.
You now think — perhaps success is reaching into the unknown with trembling fingers, trembling with the potency of the spiritual experience of stunning discovery and dissolution.