Going with the flow - Seasonal Energy Work. - The Witches Table
 
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This year for the first time I have been sending out a tweet every day noting at least one thing in the world around me which has signalled the move from Summer to Autumn.  I do find in the UK that each season has a particular energy to it. The longer I have been on the magical path the more sensitive I get to that energy and I need to make a conscious shift inside myself from one season to another in order to make sure I am vibrating in tune with the season and not fighting against it.  This allows me to truly revel in the season and the weather and I can safely say that I have no favourite, I enjoy the seasons all equally. I would advocate learning to love all the seasons for two reasons.

Firstly being in tune with the energy in the weather and the seasons is incredibly helpful in my own magickal practices.  You have to work with what you have and a piece of magick that resonates best with the particular emotions and feelings captured by long hot balmy summer nights works less well in the dead of Winter covered in frost and snow.  Better attuning yourself to the energies of the season allows you to understand the best way to perform your magick in harmony with the energy available to you. It is simply another form of energy and power to utilise in your workings and one that is varied and abundant.  However it is also a fickle and changeable energy which is why it is important to attune yourself.  Whether you are Wiccan or not, the eight Sabbat festivals of the year which mark a mixture of Solstices, Equinoxes and important agricultural dates give a good basic framework for attuning yourself to the changing energy of the seasons.  They provide a great template for the big energy peaks but I want to delve a little deeper that this.  Whilst a night of celebration is great fun and can be spiritually moving, I don’t agree that one big party for a couple of hours is really the full story.  The seasons change gradually through a number of small signs, my method of working is to slowly absorb and notice those signs, gradually moving myself into a different energetic state by a small amount each day at the same pace as the season itself changes.  The festival is then a ultimate celebration – a feeling of having arrived, but importantly I have made a journey to reach that arrival.  This is a more organic way of noticing and attuning and it allows you to really luxuriate in the changes which is important for point number two…

Secondly I want to enjoy my life.  I don’t want to spend each Winter pining for the Summer, wishing my life away.  Looking for the good things in each season may sound like an annoyingly Pollyanna way of working, however when it comes to the weather (especially in the UK) the only thing you can rely on and control is your own reaction.  I do not mean to dismiss those people who suffer SAD, I think that they have an unfortunate burden to bear which no amount of positive thinking can erase.  However for the rest of us we can find the good in all the seasons and by finding what is enjoyable we can start to enjoy them.

I love the first frost and the first daffodils, I love the bare skeletons of Winter trees and the lush abundance of my Summer garden.  I love it all, no matter how wet or annoyed I may get at times.
9/28/2011 10:02:41

This is the first year that I've been upset to see Fall - I'm dreading the winter here in Canada. I'm originally from Missouri, in the US, where we have four distinct, relatively mild seasons. In Ontario, the winter dominates, and it totally tanks my ability to be productive or do anything good for myself. Thankfully, I'm able to notice all these things about myself and actively work to avoid pining my life away for another season. Thanks for the reminder.

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9/28/2011 11:43:21

Love this post Dee! I too love connecting with the seasonal energies and appreciating each season for what it offers. Though I've not been Dx with SAD, I do suffer in the winter and have come find that celebrating each season and totally adsorb and attune to the energies it offers helps much, and I find I'm not pining my life away waiting for another season ♥

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9/28/2011 12:10:26

This is such a great post. Being an introvert, I actively dislike large ritual celebrations - something I'm only just giving myself permission to acknowledge. It's so wonderful to hear someone else advocating this gradual approach - so much more sustainable.
I find the shift into winter, and then more winter, and then seemingly endless winter, really hard, as I suffer from SAD, but over the years I've realised that the suffering is because my work patterns require me to attempt to work when my body and heart and mind are turned inward and outward in ways completely un-conducive to structured... well, anything! So this year, I'm giving myself permission to do absolutely nothing from mid-December to early January, with a slow, slow start to my year's work. :-)

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9/28/2011 12:17:31

Hi Ellie Di

Thank you for the comment. I love hearing about how other seasons work outside the UK because Winter is not the same for everyone and not even the same year to year. Endless diversity, I love it.

I am pleased that my attempt at the glad game worked for you!

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9/28/2011 12:19:47

Hi Allurynn

I hadn't even thought my approach might help soothe SAD, I really hope it does as I can see how horrible it would be to hate the season and feeling the approach of it with dread.

So here is to mulled apple juice, roast butternut squash and mince pies because Winter is Yummy..Did that help a bit too?

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9/28/2011 12:21:46

Elinor

I think big rituals have a placed and sometimes I love to participate but I am coming into a season of my Paganism where I want to be celebrating and attuning all the time, not just high days and holidays.

I love your approach to attuning your working life to the seasons as well - Autumn and Winter are definitely a great time for quiet introspection and a slow start to the year sounds delicious. Let me know how it works for you!

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9/28/2011 13:36:49

I really understand this, although I am sure I am the only person who looks forward to the darkened evenings. I love them and it makes me feel so much more spiritual than the summer. I don't know why.

Spring and autumn are more in tune with me for my personality. They are both filled with 'doing' energy.

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9/28/2011 17:50:16

"Whilst a night of celebration is great fun and can be spiritually moving, I don’t agree that one big party for a couple of hours is really the full story."

This really speaks to me. I find, more and more these days, that the simple act of staying deeply present to nature takes me deeper than formal rituals. I think years of practicing formal ritual helped me to develop a heightened sense of presence. But nowadays the immediacy of just being in nature seems to hit the spot the most.

Of course that's probably easy for me to say, living in california, where the winters are mild, and SAD isn't much of an issue.

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Lilli
9/29/2011 01:19:11

i only realised how important the seasons are when I lived in Qatar, Samhain in blazing sunshine just seed so wrong. Conversely Ramadan was more understandable where the lengths of days don"t change much across the year.

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9/29/2011 02:50:10

Darkpurplemoon

I sort of know what you mean about the darker evenings feeling more spiritual to me - although I never know if this is just a hangover from the days when I associated doing rituals with "after dark" time!

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9/29/2011 02:53:24

Hi Sharon

Thanks for commenting!

I think that Pagans get fixated a big on the festivals because the early books available also concentrated on festivals to the exclusion of being constantly present...and of course trying to be constantly present is much harder work!

I hope we are seeing a shift in the community towards a more balanced and holistic way of being in that sense.

But I do still love all the build up, the planning, thinking and talking about a festival, all the anticipation that generates is powerful magic of its own.

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9/29/2011 02:56:01

Hey Lilli

I have only ever lived in the UK and the seasons have been a constant companion for me. It is only in the last few years I have really though about the strong cultural impact the seasons have on the UK and how so much of our culture would make little sense in a place like Quatar or India, purely from a climate and seasonal perspective.

Did you notice any cultural practices which hinged on the different seasons when you were out there (apart from the sense that Ramadan is a lot more understandable outside of high British Summertime)?

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9/29/2011 10:22:33

Oh I do so love Autumn time. It is my favorite and I love to stay in tune and flow with the seasons. There is much more peace to it than fighting it or wishing it was this time of year or that. There is so much individual beauty in each season and a gorgeous threading together of one into the next.

I understand about SAD. We live in the north and it can be rather overcast here a lot of the days. Like today, for instance. I love these kinds of days in Fall, though. I'm not sure why, but I do.

Bright blessings to you for a beautiful and blessed fall,
Bird

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9/29/2011 13:19:47

Hi Bird

Thanks so much for commenting. I hope you have a restful and bountiful Autumn, just like it is supposed to be. I do lover it when I meet another season lover!

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9/29/2011 15:12:01

I really appreciate this post, as I am a total hothouse flower and previous winter-hater who can really use this information. :) I completely agree with what you said about wanting to enjoy life as it is instead of wishing it away. Last night I experienced the benefits of embracing the seasonal shifts firsthand, I cooked a warm dish with pumpkin and sage and it was the first time all season I haven't pined for one more trip to the beach!

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9/30/2011 00:52:27

Hi Marla

Thanks for dropping by!

I must admit it has been harder than usual adjusting to Autumn this year because it has been the coldest wettest Summer in the UK for about 20 odd years. It is difficult to get into the groove of Autumn when it feels like you skipped Summer entirely. But it seems like we are having a late one and temps have been about 26-28C for about a week so I can probably squeeze in one more trip river swimming!

I love the combination of squash and sage and am looking forward to a pumpkin, mushroom and sage lasange later in the season!

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