The start of fall brings a palpable change within the climate, cooling down, and much-needed reduction from the scorching warmth of the summer time. This summer time was the most popular on report for Europe and China since record-keeping started in 1880.
Fortunate for me and the contributors of my annual meditation retreat within the Swiss Alps, through the first week of this month, we loved pleasant temperatures within the 60s to 70s Fahrenheit.
Searching the window of our chalet below Mont Blanc you possibly can’t assist however be awed by the grand expanse of the mountain ranges. It brings such joyful contentment, and for a second, I assumed I noticed Julie Andrews operating throughout the grassy fields singing, “the hills are alive…” Right here, you are feeling the energies of the mountain rooting you deeply, returning you to the middle with naught a fear in thoughts.
We meditated by the waterfall and channeled the cleaning and revitalizing powers of water power to rid ourselves of negativity, replenish our essence, and return us to the supply.
Practising tai chi and qi gong within the forest as our beings merged with that of the bushes, we heard the tree spirits whispering historic knowledge in our ears, reminding us that we’re all related as one.
We have been delighted with a mild rain one afternoon, which refreshed and moistened the dry mountain air. The air smelled candy like freshly lower grass, and one of the best half was the rainbow appeared and beckoned…
Every night time, we practiced the North Star and the Huge Dipper meditation. With stars splashed throughout the heavens, there I lay, surrounded by fellow sojourners, crusing on the photo voltaic winds of the galaxy, dancing tai chi to the cosmic pulse; I’m free and within the move…after which we fell asleep below the mom universe’s embrace.
Autumn is a time of taking inventory, reflecting on the top of summer time and getting ready for the oncoming winter. It’s a time to decelerate our rhythm and ponder our connection to the entire. The belief that we’re inseparable from nature and nature is us is important to our final survival. The trendy exploitation of the planet’s assets is akin to the way in which trendy drugs approaches illness care—by extracting blood and fluids, reducing into tissues, and infusing ever extra poisonous medicine into the physique. We have to deal with Mom Earth, like the way in which Chinese language drugs cares for a affected person’s well being. Chinese language drugs empowers prevention, promotes practical equilibrium, harmonizes with nature, and isn’t superseding nature, as every of our acts has penalties for each our particular person well being and that of the planet.
This previous summer time was the third-hottest summer time on report in america. Each China and america have skilled devastating droughts, with 60% much less rainfall in China, affecting 900 million folks. Virtually half of the decrease 48 states of america are in extreme droughts, the place farms have been adopted and water use critically restricted. Mixed with the battle raging in Ukraine, which has drastically curbed meals manufacturing, it doesn’t bode nicely for the winter forward.
The traditional sage, the Yellow Emperor cautioned that when a season and its expression is excessive, it is going to be adopted by a equally excessive season within the reverse spectrum. On this case, excessive summer time warmth shall carry excessive winter chill. Insecurity of meals, power, and recession will plague our fellow citizen’s world over. Humanity’s fingerprints are throughout climate-related catastrophes, not the least wars waged towards others and between folks.
We’re one human household, irrespective of our coloration, gender, or nationality. Whereas we individually might escape pure disasters, we’re defenseless towards human-made devastations. The actions of people have an effect on the remainder of the planet. We aren’t separate from each other and definitely not separate from the universe.
Have we not realized from 1000’s of years of armed battle that wars profit nobody besides a couple of egomaniacal people and firms that manufacture weapons and munitions? You and I are the offspring of the divine female and the sacred masculine. No matter people can conjure with their sensible consciousness, they’ll manifest. There’s room for every type of innovation and power to gas them, be they black or inexperienced, so long as the worth is just not human bloodshed.
As I sipped a glass of glowing mineral water overlooking Lake Geneva, from the terraced hillside of Lavaux, established by the Romans nestled between Lausanne and Montreux, I may see why the United Nations is headquartered in lovely Geneva in addition to the Worldwide Olympic Committee positioned in Lausanne. Its neutrality and sustaining peace are sacrosanct to the folks right here.
The hidden treasure of this place is definitely the water. Switzerland is usually known as the “water tower of Europe” as its reaches all northern, southern, western, and jap elements of Europe. Switzerland is on the intersection of three nations. It offers the supply of water from its glacial and snow soften to the Rhône in France, the Rhine in Germany, and the Po in Italy. The Danube even reaches all the way in which to Romania and Ukraine. The water feeds the North Sea, Mediterranean Sea, Adriatic Sea, and the Black Sea.
I marveled on the paradise that some have come to seek advice from this place. However even right here in paradise, all is just not nicely as Switzerland was hit with a report drought this 12 months, and the degrees of all of the rivers downstream have declined to their lowest in historical past. Lots of the glaciers within the Swiss Alps have disappeared or are disappearing quickly because of the rising warmth. Drought in Switzerland can have an effect on wine manufacturing in France, grain manufacturing in Ukraine, and hydroelectric era important for industries in Germany. Nobody is spared.
The acute climatic and planetary adjustments—drought, floods, and hurricanes, have an effect on everybody, and it doesn’t care about your coloration, training degree, or nationality. It does disproportionally have an effect on the poor. Nonetheless, on the finish of the day, even the well-heeled can’t escape—we’re all on this sizzling oven collectively, so collectively, you and I have to attempt to be the answer and never add to the issue. We should increase our consciousness of how our actions can have ripple results on others and the planet.
The season of Autumn corresponds to the Steel Factor and teaches us to mirror on our actions and our life. The ancients thought-about glaciers as a part of the Steel ingredient, and since Steel is the supply of the Water ingredient, we are able to see the receding glacier ensuing within the water disaster. We reap what we sow. So go forward, do away with plastics, purchase meals in bulk, filter your water and produce it with you, stroll extra and drive much less, develop your personal meals, water crops with grey water, reuse, recycle, repurpose, and most of all, use much less, personal much less and stay easier lives.
Water Factor corresponds to the season of winter and a time of relaxation and restoration. Let’s hope that within the coming season, we’ll get via what is certain to be an extended winter unscathed. Within the meantime, I’m grateful for the teachings of Autumn in needing much less, doing much less, gathering my power via qi gong, tai chi, and meditation, and searching inward whereas doing what I can to assist others and the world.
I took my final stroll on the path, bidding farewell to the mountains, bushes, waterfall, and retreat contributors. I sincerely hope that the gorgeous nature of the Alps will stay for future generations of dwelling organisms, people and animals alike. I hope they won’t disappear as a result of we’ve got uncared for them whereas it was below our watch.
I wish to finish this text by sharing a quote from Lao Tzu’s Tao Teh Ching:
“The traditional ones who knew tips on how to stay in keeping with the pure fact of wholeness have been easy and real—they have been like bushes within the forest. Empty and receptive, they have been like a cave within the mountain. Complete and unprejudiced, they have been equally variety to all issues, just like the water of a stream flowing down a mountain, they benefited all issues…”
P.S. When you’d like to affix me, I invite you to enroll now at chirivers.com for subsequent 12 months’s retreat in Europe. The utmost quantity is capped at 25 as a result of we favor to tread evenly and go away no footprints.