A week after back-to-school night at my daughter’s school, our Indian summer ended abruptly. Clouds filled the sky. No raindrops fell, but it turned cool enough to convince me that, yes, summer is over. I’ll admit I didn’t want it to end. I love the long days of sunlight, the warmth, and fresh produce. I’m going to miss my hammock and lounging by the pool reading. I’m also going to miss meditating, practicing yoga, and journal writing in the back yard. I’m going to miss lying on my back and staring up at our eucalyptus tree. I’m going to miss hummingbirds and blue jays, and the smell of honeysuckle and damp earth after my husband has watered the yard.
Yesterday I moved all my spiritual practice paraphernalia indoors: my yoga mat, blankets, bolster, and blocks; my journal, pens, timer, earplugs, sacred stones, and gratitude beads; my lap desk and my moonstone egg. At first I felt sad; I didn’t want to move my practice indoors, didn’t want to leave nature.
But as I rearranged furniture, cleaned house, recreated altars, lit candles and incense, and set my butt down on my meditation cushion, I not only felt better, but joyous! I set up three places for spiritual practice: in my bedroom, living room, and office. The office space is small, but rather than cramped, it felt cozy. Indoors has advantages, which started me thinking about things I enjoy about this time of year, the greatest of which is that delicious back-to-school feeling of hunkering down even deeper into my work—which I love!
Here are some tips for transitioning into fall. Enjoy!
A few months ago I bought a moonstone egg. When I roll the hard, cool stone in my hand, I visualize my memoir, which has not yet “hatched,” but is gestating. The blue tinge on the stone’s surface reminds me of the challenges I face writing it, the difficulty of mining the depths, telling the truth, and conveying complex human emotions.
When I hold the stone up to the light, it glows. This reminds me of the pleasures of writing: discoveries and surprises, the power writing has to heal, the joy I feel when words flow, when I’ve nailed an event or emotion, or stumbled upon a new awareness.
When I see light in my moonstone egg, I imagine my dream is contained within its glow. My dream is a fetus. I envision the cells of my story multiplying, my memoir alive and well. It breathes. It has a heart.
Holding my moonstone egg in the palm of my hand also reminds me of the much larger light that fills my body—the light that informs my writing, but also my life. It’s within me even when I can’t feel it or see it.
If it could talk, my moonstone egg would say, “Remember your glow, remember your light. Nourish your project and it will grow. It too is part of this light. It wants to be born. Imagine its birth. See it published. Visualize it making its way to readers, whose lives will be moved, perhaps even saved, by its message.”
What’s your dream? Perhaps you’d like to paint large canvasses? Or start a new business? Or breathe fresh life into the one you’ve got? Maybe the summer Olympics inspired a more physical dream. Perhaps you’d like to run a marathon? Or hike the Himalayas?
Whatever it may be, a talisman can help energize your vision. It can help you not only image your dream more fully, but give you an opportunity to commune with your dream, to linger with it the same way you enjoy the company of a good friend. When focusing on your dream, assuming you’re clear about what it is, it may help to project into the future and ask these questions:
The better able you are to visualize your dream and feel its truth, the better your chances of creating it. Holding your dream not only in your imagination, but also in the palm of your hand makes it that much more real.