The weather has turned more seasonable while remaining on the chilly side. The storm managed a good 30 inches of snow, the second most ever recorded in a single tempest here. Now the mid-March sun creates a rich tapestry of light and shadow across the snow-covered forested landscape.
February and March are dear to me for the quality of their light. February shadows are often an unbelievably sublime blue, while March yields a sparkling, playful light on the snow.
These days I find myself cycling between a cautious spring hopefulness and a form of dark dread, struggling to find anything approaching balance in these difficult times. There is something about the greed and lack of empathy at work in our world that wears away at me. The outer world has taken on form and substance that echos my most nagging fears and concerns. I often feel terribly alone, even as I speak to many people who share much of my experience.
The Earth has turned back on her axis and we have arrived at the equinox, that lovely moment when all of the world’s beings briefly share the experience of balance between light and dark. After that brief pause in the middle, the tilt will continue, leading to summer in the northern hemisphere or winter in the southern. Six months from now, we will again meet in the middle.
I like to think that the excesses of our historical moment will also turn, move towards some sort of middle ground, before again shifting towards the extremes. These shifts are, uncomfortably, less predictable and dependable than the equinoxes and solstices, yet play out in their own great cycles. Our human frame of reference is relatively short, and the time required for history to cycle can be comparatively long. From a geological point of view, human historical epochs are infinitesimally brief, as will be the lifespan of humans as a species.
This morning I write, straining to hold both my own, unique, very human perspective, and the long view. I want to see this heartbreaking time through my own experience as an individual human being, and through the sweeping perspective of Mother Earth. It is a demanding exercise requiring a perplexing stretching of the imagination.
Perhaps it is not really possible to fully wrap our arms around these differing perspectives, yet it seems important to try. When I stop and consider it, I become aware that the very effort is a sort of miracle of consciousness, a moment of the universe becoming aware of itself, a mystery to be pondered and held close and dear. In that moment I am reminded that miracles happen even in difficult times.