Editor’s note: for more information on the 2019 Spring Equinox, click here.
“There is no object so foul that intense light will not make beautiful.” ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson
I’ve always been an avid observer of nature.
I have a special fondness for trees; the ones that face my house are a calendar that marks the arrival of every season for me.
Although they’re entirely naked right now, they will grow new leaves again within a few weeks. Just as their nakedness brings me tranquility and stillness, their newly sprouted leaves shower me with delight and hope.
Throughout our lifetime, we’re on a relentless quest to find those who can guide us. Though we may find them in people and books, the ultimate teacher is right in front of us.
Nature is the teacher that never tires of giving us clues and redirecting us toward the right path. One of her most imperative lessons is unfolding on March 20th, the official beginning of spring in the Northern Hemisphere.
When spring begins, the days become longer, and the nights become shorter than they were in winter. They both become nearly equal in length. The spring equinox is a significant event in the astronomical cycle of the earth.
Though we might not know it, it’s just as significant in our lives also.
“Nature does not hurry, yet everything is accomplished.” ~ Lao Tzu
The March equinox represents balance, change, and fresh new beginnings—three things that nature perfectly achieves. In contrast, we often fail to find balance and wind up either doing too much or nothing at all. We often only make peace with change and new beginnings after a whole lot of resistance and disturbance on our part.
The spring equinox is the perfect time of the year to believe in the power of balance the same way that nature does. Though in the winter, nightfall comes early—in spring, it comes later. Nature doesn’t revolt or resist. It slowly moves from the dark to the light, and from the light to the dark again. It’s all about balance.
“It is always darkest before the dawn.” ~ Proverb
The dark and the light manifest in our lives as situations and conditions. Although it might be sunny outside, within ourselves, it might feel stormy. Like nature, we thrive on both, but we tend to oppose the dark. We’re constantly seeking the light, oblivious to the fact that the sun can’t shine within us if it doesn’t set first.
The beginning of spring is our reminder to welcome the cycles in our lives with an open heart and mind. We must embrace change and let it assist us in moving forward.
Everything we enjoy watching in nature wouldn’t exist without the law of change—and although change plays a crucial role in creating beauty on earth, it wouldn’t exist without surrender from nature’s part.
Nature flows with the energy of change. If she doesn’t shed the old, the new won’t come to the surface. Like the earth, things in our lives always shift. With the beginning of the spring equinox, we should reflect on this undeniable truth and stop creating a reality other than the one that is happening right now.
Every day is a day for growth and new beginnings. Although we think nature is dead during winter, the truth is that it’s only dormant. Nature requires periods of resting, so she can thrive again.
Likewise, when our lives don’t go as planned or expected, we’re not dead. In spite of all our confusion, doubt, and worries, we’re only dormant—getting ready to take the first steps toward change.
Here are a few ways we can welcome the spring equinox and tune in to the spring inside us:
Spring cleaning. Start with your home, and then move to your own body and emotions. Throw away what you haven’t been using or whatever is outdated. Take care of your body by exercising and adding healthy food to your diet. As for your emotional well-being, try meditation, yoga, or any other practice that helps you become more mindful.
Shed the old. What is no longer serving you, bringing you down, or stopping you? Holding on to what is outdated in our lives transforms into a blockage that stands in the way of what’s coming. Make a conscious decision that you shall release what’s draining you. Most importantly, be gentle and patient with yourself as you remove the block from your path.
Connect with nature. Being in nature makes us happier, healthier, and calmer. Now that the spring is here, we can take longer walks, go for hikes, and go climbing or camping. Also, let’s watch more sunsets and sunrises—they’re my daily dose of magic. Observe how everything in nature works, and try to apply it to your own life. “Look deep into nature, and then you will understand everything better.” ~ Albert Einstein
Set intentions. Plant the seeds of your goals in the universe’s garden. Like nature, surrender to the power of timing. There is never a wrong time—time is always right, but we must be patient.“If you want something, release the wish.” ~ Rumi
Be kind to nature. Earth is our home. We must respect what was created long before us and that which still sustains us to this day. Unfortunately, we have done plenty of damage. However, we can take small actions that have a huge impact on its continuity, such as reducing plastic use, not littering, saving energy and water, and considering going vegetarian or vegan.
Author: Elyane Youssef
Image: Unsplash/Allef Vinicius
Editor: Yoli Ramazzina
Copy editor: Nicole Cameron