February 19 - Attending to Seasons as a Practice of Presence and Prayer
The quote in the paper cut above comes from a beautiful book by Macrina Wiederkeher called Seven Sacred Pauses: Living Mindfully Through the Hours of the Day.
Her words tie together the awareness we explored in the first week of light at different hours of the day with an awareness of seasonal change throughout the year. Seasonal change happens more slowly but follows a similar rhythm and pattern to the changing light of the hours of the day.
Unlike the hours of the day which we can observe daily, an observation of the seasons involves a longer term practice of attention and observation. I invite you to reflect on ways a practice of attention in a place close to your home might help you to notice the subtleties of seasonal changes.
This week begins the season of Lent in the Christian tradition. I was reminded recently that the origin of the word Lent is “spring season.” Last year for Lent, I committed to visiting a park near my home each week. On Ash Wednesday, the paths through the park were been regraded with stone dust and I couldn’t help but be reminded of images of ash and dust from Ash Wednesday services.
It was interesting to observe the transformation of one well known space between late February and early April of last year. So much change occurred in our routines and daily lives during this time that the natural signs of spring were a welcome consistency.
Today as you reflect on your observations, anticipation and memories of seasons this week, you might also want to think of the year as a wheel and imagine how the seasons fit together in this way. My paper cuts above and below are versions of imagining the wheel of the year through changes in the trees.