when I was 9 my best friend was an African american girl named Autumn (I wonder where she is now) whose father worked for an American company in Karachi. so whenever I think of the word autumn, I always think of her first:). the next memory appears…years a go i remember looking out the window while sitting in the Redpath library in Montreal (where the change of season was so much more dramatic than in Karachi) and watching a young man and little boy play with the hundreds of orange yellow leaves that had gathered on the field.
there is a beauty in the change of season that is indescribable. the days turn shorter, and the grace with which the cycle of life and death amongst nature is so inspiring. Nothing ever stays the same and watching leaves reminds me of that everyday. as I closed my yoga class this evening, I hoped that everyone could find that even in the most difficult of transitions there is beauty, there is grace, only if we allow it in our hearts the universe will deliver it.
so i read about the autumn equinox – and this year after having honored the summer solstice at Yandara I felt the need to mark this new season with a little ceremony as well. I quickly just followed my instinct and lit 2 chakra activating incense sticks i had that i’ve never used, took out my white sage, got a few leaves that were dead from a plant outside and put all of it on a small plate with a candle. I picked a fresh new flower, my favorite, the champa and tucked it behind my ear.
I sat in sukhasana – easy pose – sitting comfortably and listening to a song by Snatam Kaur, “Ong Namo” I began to breath with attention to my heart. The song opens with some incredible lyrics
“the rain is pouring down, like all the souls you send here,
coming to this earth to find healing.
mother earth takes in the rain, like your heart takes my voice.
let us free each other, with our prayers, with our voice.”
I had kept my pen and paper close and began to write. Before i knew it I had to reach for another piece of paper. the wishes were so different than what I had been intellectualizing about all day. and after emptying my hearts desires i returned to my meditation.
a few minutes pass and the same song is about to come to a close. I opened my eyes, and slowly slipped my wishes into the flame. as the papers turned to ash, so did the wishes, merely a reflection of my intention to grow, to seek truth, and to find God over and over again.
may you all be blessed with a season full of beautiful intentions, enjoying the longer nights, the soon to be arriving cooler weather and for those of us in Karachi, the blooming flowers of this season.