As a practitioner of the Old Ways, and by that I mean the wisdom and folk traditions that were handed down from the pre-Christian European nature-centric worldview, I feel very connected to and enlivened by the movement of the seasons.
I subscribe to the belief that life is holographic. Everything that happens in the visible realm is happening simultaneously in the subtle inner realms. That, in truth, we are both the dreamer and the dream.
As a being made of energy (even matter is really just energy that is more dense and slow-moving), we are deeply affected by the fields of resonance all around us. So much of our pre-cognitive senses are based in ways of knowing that have never atrophied in the animal kingdom. These ways of knowing are based in the detection of subtle shifts in temperature, pressure, humidity, infra-sound (the sound emitted by trees and volcanos, etc), and light. The plants around us live their lives bound to these shifting patterns. They bloom, flower, fruit, and reseed based on shifts in these energy patterns. All of Life is dancing to this orchestra of light, heat, sound, moisture, and nutrient cycles.
Only humans (and the animals that humans have domesticated) have attempted to extract ourselves from the sea of energy that marks the movement of time on Earth. And in place of these innate biological markers, we have created the Gregorian Calender, and the atomic clock. We have manufactured time in a way that keeps us grinding on endlessly with very little variety, very little personal adaptive freedom, and almost no mechanisms for registering changes in the underlying rhythms. Without this living receptivity to the energies of Life, we cannot adapt wisely to the changes.
As a creature on this Earth, we are out of step. We are not dancing with the orchestra, but attempting to move to our own contrived rhythms born of the worldview of endless growth and profit and accumulation. Moving out of pace with Life, being out of rhythm, is the same as being in dissonance. Out of resonance. Like being a poorly tuned instrument in the band, it makes the resulting sound more painful for everyone.
My herbalism teacher recently shared research with us about the drastically falling sperm counts of human males. The researcher cited that if projected models continue, sperm counts among males will be effectively zero by 2045. ZERO. In the next 24 years. This is only one crisis looming on the horizon for human life, among many, and they are converging on us.
This Equinox, this day of balance and harmony, reminds me that at the root of these impending (and imminent) crises is this dissonance with Life itself. We have forgotten how to be in harmony. How to contribute to the symphony. Instead we have become a clamoring, destructive, cacophany on this Earth. And as a result, Life is receding from us. Reproductive capacity, the core indicator of the future of a species, is evaporating before our eyes.
The work of Magic on this Sabbat, in my view, is to sink deeply into this feeling of harmony and to emulate that balance in our lives. To tune our senses so that we can register the language of Life that is being sung and danced and spoken all around us. To sync our lives, as much as possible, with the cycles within cycles that are moving through us. Each day offers the energy of the diurnal cycle. As people in female bodies, we have our monthly ovulation cycle, the monthly lunar cycle, the annual solar cycle, the cycles of time that mark a life (Maiden, Mother, Queen, Crone). The movements of the planets and other celestial bodies as they affect our lives. The cycles of grief and healing. These spirals through time are at work within us whether we acknoledge them or not. When we actively engage these cycles, we join in the energetic dance of Life as a creator, a participant, a partner. This makes us potent. A healing force on the planet. We reweave our thread into the tapestry of Life. We heal our exile.
On this Ostara, may we embrace the deep magic of belonging, and do the work of taking our place as a beneficial species on this planet.
And so it is.