Tree watching: Allow Nature to guide you
Nature can be our biggest inspiration. When we look outside we can see that many trees are getting more colourful; and now they are starting to lose their leaves. Trees literally let go of their leaves as they prepare for colder days, or for any other time when they are stressed and forced to work on survival (for example if there’s not enough rain in hot weather). During challenging times trees concentrate on transporting water and minerals to their centre, to their heart: literally their heartwood. This enables them to keep needed energy inside, surviving through another season.
Here is a basic lesson we can learn from trees: “Whenever we are stressed or in a survival situation we need to learn how to return to our centre and focus on what is the most important. At the same time we need to learn to let go of things which are not essential.”
Autumn it is a perfect time for letting go With the symbol of Autumn leaves gently falling to the ground, let us see letting go as the opposite of grasping. Most of the time we try to grasp pleasant experiences and feelings, while we push away unpleasant ones. This is grasping: not accepting what is, trying to hold on to what was. By grasping we become fixed and attached. Letting go is a wonderful act, reminding us that we don’t have to spend energy by grasping things we want or pushing away things we don’t want. Simply being – and being aware of what IS – creates a healthy and more energised life.
See if you can let things be the way they are. This Autumn, practice contentment with what is! Letting go means letting things just be the way they are. It is an active process of acceptance and detachment. Letting go is a practice we do over and over again, moment by moment. It is the way to freedom.
When you recognise that you are allowing yourself to become ‘attached’ or grasping, remind yourself to let go and practice contentment. Be aware of what is present in your life and be grateful for it.
Breathe in and breathe out In the Chinese five-element-theory Autumn is a time of the “metal” element which is associated with the Lungs and Large Intestine. The Lungs transform the air we breath into the oxygen necessary for our bodies to function and the Large Intestine eliminates the waste that our bodies no longer need. Deep breathing and fresh air are essential for our health. Controlled and regular breathing has a direct effect on the autonomous nervous system, governing energy and pulse. Therefore breathing forms a bridge between body and mind and is utilised in yoga and meditation to keep the two in balance.