We’re in that late-autumn-heading-toward-winter period here on the north shore of Massachusetts. Most all of the leaves are gone from the trees and when I walk with my dogs on the narrow country lanes around my home, I notice that the sky has gotten bigger. As I sit at my desk looking out through a wall of windows into the wetland forest behind our house, I can see deep into the woods. There’s a whole other world back there in the forest that, for the last five or six months, has been hidden from view. And now as winter approaches and brings with it thoughts of snuggling into a quiet, cozy spot in front of the fire, the outdoor space seems oddly more open and exposed than it did in the summer. Now that the foliage is gone, nature offers fewer places to hide.

The days are getting shorter and the nights are getting longer. During the daylight, it is easy to remain caught up in the activities of family, work, relationships, life, and not notice what is happening within. Yet then the night comes – the long nights. Through the darkness, the long stillness of cold nights, and the magic of dreams, the outer world goes into hiding and our inner world reveals itself, sometimes in unexpected ways.

Over the next few months, we in the north will have more hours in the darkness than in the light. More opportunities for looking inward, to reflect on who we have been and who life is asking us to be. More opportunities to take stock, tap into the seeds of potential buried in the ground within us, and see which seeds want to grow into full life in the coming springtime. Each season offers unique and special gifts. Late autumn into winter offers us the gifts of reflection and discovery.

If you are in the southern hemisphere, perhaps you are experiencing just the opposite. The winter of introspection is over and springtime is coming. Time for new birth, tilling the garden, and starting new manifestation projects. Springtime offers gifts of new beginnings.

In today’s “hurry-up” world, it is easy to lose touch with the rhythms of nature and the gifts of the seasons. Yet the magic is always there waiting for us if we will just pay attention. What is this season inviting you to discover? What opportunities might the change of seasons have in store for you if you just pay attention


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