Welcome to another Heartful Contemplation of the week.
This week, the invitation is to use the energy of Winter to reflect gently and joyfully on what needs attending to in ourselves ..
Ancient cultures lived more in tune with the rhythms of nature, learning great wisdom from the cycles, strategies, ways of being of animals, plants, mountains, seas, clouds and stars.. Taoism is one among many of those traditions. In Qiqong that is based on Taoism, there are animal forms of movement / being (e.g. tiger, dragon, turtle, crane, snake, etc) all of which are associated with certain seasons, elements, organs, energy, and movement.
Winter is a time for going inward.. After harvest time (when the produce is harvested and stored), the pace slows down. Trees shed their leaves and draw their energy inward, some animals go into hybernation, the earth rests to recuperate while supporting seeds underneath. While nature is going inward and collecting her energy, we modern or postmodern 🙂 humans, keep running around. Our bodies, minds, souls may give us signals to slow down, rest, recollect, yet aside from the allowed times of Christmas and New Year breaks, we keep rushing as usual.
Nature Does Not Hurry, Yet Everything Is Accomplished. – Lao Tzu
We are approaching the early beginnings of Spring. Last week, on 02 02 2022, the day of the Celtic Festival of Imbolc (celebrating light and hope), with my dear friend and colleague Orla O’Sullivan, we guided the workshop Noble friendship with the Body: A Springtime Session to nourish peace, healing and hope. With a great group of people from Turkey, Italy and Germany, we reflected on our relationship to our bodies and shared on beginning anew with our bodies with the upcoming Spring.
Before full-fledged entry into Spring, the invitation for this week is to reflect first on Winter. If the winter supports going inward, reflecting and recollecting our energies, this week’s heartful contemplation becomes asking ourselves “what needs attending to in me this winter, right now?” Tending is a word (and a verb :)) I love, cause it has “attending to” as directing one’s attention / focus to something but with great gentleness, in a tender and delicate way.. Reminds me of the Little Prince and his rose..
People where you live,” the little prince said, “grow five thousand roses in one garden… Yet they don’t find what they’re looking for… And yet what they’re looking for could be found in a single rose.
The Little Prince, Antoine de Saint-Exupéry
His rose was unique and he tended to her with love and care; he missed his rose when he came to Earth.
If you bring this kind, compassionate focus to yourself (to your mind, body, energetic body, our relationships, your home and work, your relationship to the community and to the planet), what calls out to you that needs some caring?
We may pause now, come back to our breathing (deep breath in, slow breath out…), have a smile on our lips, if it feels good, put our hand on our heart or lower belly, turn the attention inward and ask:
-What does my body need to be ready for Spring, to be rejuvenated, for beginning anew?: How do my different organs and my spine feel right now? How can I care for them? What happens when I smile to my organs, to my spine, thank them and ask if they have any messages for me, for the whole?
-What kind of tending is needed for my mind? What thoughts, emotions, need tending to? How can I tend to them? What are the negative seeds in my consciousness (thoughts and feelings that lead to unwholesome actions and take away my energy) that need tending? What are the positive seeds that I can nourish and prepare for Spring (thoughts, feelings that lead to wholesome acts and bring me and others energy, joy, love and compassion)?
-What about my energy? What needs attending to, for my life energy to be balanced and vibrant?
-Am I in right relationship with the Earth? What needs tending to in my relationships to loved ones, friends, colleagues, to community, to MotherEarth?
You may keep on asking these questions on different days of the week, different times of day and collect the insights..
Imagine how a little seed is protected under the earth and it gets all the nourishment of the earth, the minerals, the rains, some warmth of the sun.. It needs all its energy to grow and go with full force to the pearce the earth and come out. So do we (need thi energy to start fresh). With deep looking, becoming aware of what needs tending and what conditions of tending each part exactly needs, we can create the conditions of nourishment for our minds, bodies, souls and energy to be able to flourish with new ideas, to allow for inspiration..
May we all have a nourishing week ahead. Please share your experiences below.