The Brilliance of Autumn

The Brilliance of Autumn

Upcoming / ongoing:

8-Week Series: Bringing Mindful Qualities to Life: Meditation, Teaching, and Interactive Dialogue, Mondays from 6:00 to 7:30 pm
October 16, 23, 30; November 6, 13, 20; December 4, 11 [MORE INFO]

Daylong: “The Four Heavenly Abodes: Opening the Heart-Mind.” Saturday, October 28, 2023 from 9:30 a.m.–4 p.m.. [MORE INFO]

Dear Friends,

As each moment echoes the almost imperceptible shift of sunlight and moon glow, and the decreases and increases of temperature, the mood of the changing season embraces me in softening, sensual awareness, in comfort, and inward movement.

The crispness of circulating air and drying flowers, becomes brilliant hues of a natural spectrum, transforming leaf colors from green to red, orange, yellow, pink, and brown, a freefall detaching to earth, crumpling as I walk underfoot. Is not Fall the apex of the summer harvest, a poignant expression of reflective light manifesting before us?

Last night while sitting outside eating dinner and listening to music, embraced by the cool breeze and easy release of daytime temperatures, my body relaxed, so pleased that the enormous heat of summer 2023 was no longer present and I could let go as I learned from the trees.

Gratitude was in my mind, thankfulness for the ability of nature with its seasons to still change despite the overarching march of climate change. I was amazed by how the temperatures of the year could influence my disposition, emotions, and thinking. Who is this being who floats in and out of balance and equanimity? Who is so easily influenced by the circumstances and conditions of life?

I long for the steadiness of mind, for a gentle repose of spirit, and a lingering attitude of a caring love that interacts with all animate beings and all inanimate sources of earth and planetary reality. I no longer want the suffering emotions enclosed by thoughts of panic and fear, embroiled in heat waves of anger, frustration and rage, dripping in sorrow and sadness.

The Buddha asked us to awaken to the truths of illness, injury, aging, and death. He reassured us that the reasons for these afflictive conditions are clinging, wanting, and craving. He promised us that it is possible for these negative states to cease if we follow the Noble Eightfold path to happiness. I honor this confidence as it emerges through my meditation, mindfulness, and Buddhist practice. He has let us know time and again that if we release unnecessary suffering and we follow the way to compassion and wisdom we can come to feel peace and composure.

The brilliance of the autumn sky, crystal, clear blue, with a panorama of vividly colored leaves, inspires my heart to rejoice. I see no need to hold on to anything, and I allow the flux of Fall to enrapture my spirit and all our spirits in the promise of awakening.