Some people look at me with disbelief when I tell them how I much love the season of Autumn. Where others might feel sorry to see the leaves starting to fall and the summer season leave; I love to feel the wind clear the dusty dryness and see the rain nourish nature and clean the buildings and streets.
I also adore the absolutely stunning orange, red and brown colors, which to me are related to the colors of earth and creativity. I love how Autumn lets go of what has been used and creates space and time for Winter to set in, by removing the old.
I’ve lived in Singapore for a while and one of the things I missed the most (next to Dutch herring) was the change of seasons. Being born in the good old wet Netherlands, a typical Northern Hemisphere kinda girl, I found it hard at times to embrace the never changing 30 degrees celcius humid blanket of Singapore, which was always waiting behind the front door; regardless of whether it was Christmas, Summer, Spring or Autumn or for that matter; Day or Night.
For month after coming back from Asia I would have the habit of walking into my backyard in the early hours of the morning to inhale the fresh crips cold air that rules the Netherlands so often.
Both consciously and subconsciously the properties of the seasons influence the functioning of every human being on earth; with the rhythms of the 4 seasons Spring, Summer, Autumn and Winter; and their 4 elements Earth, Fire, Air and Water influencing our mindsets, moods and behavior in many ways.
Ancient Chinese philosophy distinguishes 5 seasons, Spring, Summer, Indian Summer, Autumn and Winter and their corresponding 5 elements, Wood, Fire, Earth, Metal and Water.
So while Summer and Winter correspond with Fire and Water in both Western and Eastern philosophy; Spring and Autumn have different elements.
Where Autumn is concerned however; the Chinese Autumn element Metal and Western Autumn element Air are assigned similar properties; triggering the same sort of influences on human behavior as well as that of the inhabitants of animal kingdom and the natural world in general.
Both Air and Metal stand for the energy of change; preparing for a new phase in time and space; harvesting what has grown in Summer; putting to use or in stock what has bloomed and has been gathered. The hard work of summer has been done; it is now time to archive what has been cycled; for the leaves to turn to compost, to incubate; prepare to rest in Winter and ultimately start a new cycle in Spring.
From a personal development point of view it’s about changing gear to another way of thinking and engaging other resources to accomplish and manifest; letting go of old thoughts, being creative in implementing new; adapting to the changes that take place; eliminating, purifying at the same pace, while using the tools that come with Autumn.
A time to eat nourishing foods; replacing the light and fresh salads of summer with sturdy soups and stews, filled with wholehearted ingredients, ginger, garlic, onion, pepper. Time also to cleans the lungs. I so prefer seaside walks in Autumn feeling the vibrant air wash down my system and again letting go of the stale of the old.
The Tarot – based Nan Yar cards, source their meaning from Western esoteric knowledge. The element ‘Air” is integrated in the suit of Insights; the 14 blue cards ( 1-10 + Page, Knight, Queen and King) with the Rose as their symbol.
Insights are the result of gathering experience while traveling through the different phases of life; applying in the next what has been assembled in the former.
Also here the element Air reflects the constant transition taking place through ever changing visions, wishes and intentions; leaving behind the old, adapting to the new; inhaling fresh air, exhaling stale; leaving behind what has been, experimenting the new; on an on in cycles of seasons, using Winter, Spring, Summer and Fall; Water, Earth, Fire and Air as the ever returning cycles of resource.
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The abridged spoken version of this blog, features as end note on ‘Dutchbuzz’, the radio hour for Internationals every Tuesday from 10 to 11 pm on ‘Den Haag FM and can be found in the Programme Archive of the Dutchbuzz podcasts, dated October 2, 2018.