The Fall Equinox - Embracing the gift of turning inward
It is around the transitional time of the Autumnal Equinox and Harvest Moon that there is a natural progression where, for a moment, time stands still and a readjustment happens naturally on earth. We see this in the physical changes around us, but there is so much going on energetically which we can and should tune in to.
It is important for us to honor this time and the feelings associated with it with grace and kindness toward ourselves knowing that from this space new ideas and creations will be born!
The Fall Equinox (also known as the September or Autumnal Equinox) usually falls anywhere from September 21st to 23rd of each year. That day, as well as the three days before and after it, is a window of opportunity which is pregnant with possibilities for shifting energetically.
Since we are guided by the macrocosm - the universe and the cycles that govern earth - and our microcosm within our system is always connected and affected by that overarching energy, when the Fall Equinox signals this seasonal change, it is also signaling to us that this is a natural time of tuning inward, letting go, and reevaluating our goals and dreams. As the sun is further away from the earth, and now the light of the days is giving way to the darkness of the night, there is a natural feeling of loss and slowing down that we experience.
The full moon that happens closest to the time of the Fall Equinox is always considered to be the Harvest Moon. This is the time to reap the fruits of the summer with various rituals surrounding this night. One of these rituals is a Harvest Moon Youthing Ceremony that originated in Africa which I had the honor of learning from my teacher, Starr, and which I celebrate every year with a closed circle of friends and students.
So what might come up for you?
With energies of both the Fall Equinox and the Harvest Moon, you may experience these feelings:
Internal clock feels ‘off’
A sense of loss
It might be helpful for you to know that during this transition from summer to fall, as well as after any Full Moon, there is always a drop in energy which brings its natural release of baggage and emotions with it. Allow it all in and know that you are in the exact right place, and be kind to yourself! Accept this internal shift as a positive opportunity, and consider doing some of the following things to bring yourself into flowing with it and being guided through it.
Here’s what you can do.
Nourish yourself through these tools of connection and release:
Taking salt and baking soda baths (1 cup salt & ½-1 cup baking soda per bath) the day of, and the day after the full moon
Journaling your feelings (with no judgement on what comes up for you)
Meditating (meditation does not need to be a long drawn-out process...just a few minutes of being quiet, even just sitting outside and listening to nature, can be powerful)
Connecting inward through your Heart Chakra, here is the gift of my Heart Meditation for you
Tuning into your guidance through Divination Cards
Creating an Abundance Crystal Grid that represents the harvest of your efforts
Reading a good book that inspires you
Listening to inspiring Mantras
Cozying up to a warm drink, for example my Golden Turmeric Latte
Cuddling up with your loved one
Sometimes, the darker times we go through will birth new creation into life and it’s an important part of our season. Think of the gestation period when a baby is developing in the darkness of the womb, yet so much growth is occurring!
Ancient traditions from various cultures seem to confirm to us that our ancestors understood the significance of the Fall Equinox and they celebrated and transitioned through it with various rituals and observances, some of which remain in practice today.
In the German town of Fuerth, the Michaelis-Kirchweih (literally translated it means church christening) is a 900-year old tradition of completing the harvest by the 29th of September, the name day of Archangel Michael, and celebrating with a Thanksgiving of the Harvest Parade on the second Sunday thereafter. There are about three thousand participants and 100,000 spectators at the parade, and over a million total visitors who gather yearly to observe this tradition over a 12-day period.
In Bali, farmers have been known to spend time making and flying kites after a successful harvest. In considering the energetic symbolism of this, the energy of dragons is connected to fire energy (related to the sun). The sun/dragon, having done its job over the summer growing period, is now ‘freed’ and the earth energy is being released into the element of air. The quality and the function of this is symbolically embodied in this tradition of flying kites over harvested fields. In Bali, the people believe that this is a form of worshipping Shiva.
There are obviously quite a few cultures which observe rituals and traditions to honor the Fall Equinox and the changes that come with it. In our busy society, we are more ruled by our daily routines and very often we gloss over the seasonal changes because we don’t really see a change in the weather. Therefore, we don’t really consciously acknowledge the shifts in seasons and what we can do to shift WITH them.
We may not follow the same rituals and traditions of old, but we can still practice the intention behind them - to honor the energetic changes of the seasons and to adapt and grow WITH them. Our bodies still function on our ancestry and it is so important to honor the natural cycles and embrace it all.
You can also read more about some other Fall Equinox traditions here: https://www.timeanddate.com/calendar/september-equinox-customs.html
Here is a beautiful version of the Gayatri Mantra by Deva Premal: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SlUsoWmso9U&t=55s
For more info on the Michaelis-Kirchweih, read more in this German article: http://www.michaelis-kirchweih.de/