We in New England are always happy to celebrate the Vernal Equinox as it heralds the beginning of Spring and the end of our long cold Winter! However, it seems as it often happens, our Winter is loathe to give up its hold on our bitter temperatures. Indeed as I sit writing this at my computer, the outside is gloomy (chance of snow) and rather chilly — not quite having hit the freezing mark of 32 degrees Fahrenheit. Brrr!
Tomorrow, the actual day of the Equinox as the Sun enters Aries at 6:29 AM EDT we are promised a more moderate temperature — perhaps reaching into the 40’s! It has been a strange winter with the Boston area experiencing its 5th warmest winter on record! Still — there has been a bit of a roller-coaster effect as several weeks have presented us with record highs and lows! Snowfall has been modest, but always an impediment to travel and outdoor plans, that do not include skiing or other snow activities.
As you can imagine — just the thought of the first day of Spring puts a bounce in our steps and a happy note in our hearts. We are ready for the more moderate temperatures for our outdoor activities — and look forward to those balmy days of Summer that surely are on their way!
Today — under gloomy skies and a brisk wind, our family will attend a St. Patrick’s Day Parade as we have for the past several years — followed by a hearty corned-beef and cabbage dinner with all the “fixin’s”! It’s always a happy and joyous time as the family gathers together to catch up on the latest news, admire everyone’s wearing of the Green, and honor those veterans who faithfully march every year in the parades — veterans from all of the wars and conflicts that the US has been in since WWII. I remember the Parades when I was young with the young men marching, many going off to war, and those who had been tempered by being in the battles. Vast arrays of armaments thundering along the street, feeling the impact of their weight as the vibrations could be felt under our feet. There was a sense of patriotism, pride, community, family and purpose that seems somehow to be lacking today. But I, for one, will be on the sidelines cheering for each and every veteran, fireman, police officer, boy and girl scout that generously turn out to participate. The sight of our flag flapping in the gusts of wind, and the smiling faces of all who participate and all who come to honor make my heart swell with pride that we have not forgotten those who put their lives on the line for all of us — those who protect our lives and our freedom!
OK — got on a bit of a soap-box there — but perhaps it is just the essence of the Vernal Equinox, with its ancient rhythms and cadence of times past, that move me to think about the bigger picture of life. How many of our ancestors had the strength of purpose and grit to leave their homeland and come to a new land where they hoped for a better life. They toiled for many difficult years — tilling the soil, protecting their homesteads, raising their offspring, and developing this country which today so many call home! America was called the melting-pot, and it seemed that no matter who arrived on this soil, no matter where they came from, this country was big enough to absorb those who were willing to work hard and wanted to make this their country and their homeland. The diversity of race, creed or culture mattered less than their desire to better their lives and the lives of their families. For so many who worked on the land, the Vernal Equinox presented them with the opportunity to begin anew — they planted new crops with the hope that they would thrive, they brought children into this world with the idea that life would be good here, their family could grow and find that essential feeling of belonging.
The cadence and harmony of the seasons gave them a template for their year ahead — each sector forecasting the necessities and requirements that would be essential for them to be successful in order to move forward to the next seasons business. The primordial rhythms of the Earth have for centuries carried man on his journey of survival, existence and their ultimate triumph over all the vicissitudes of life. Facing life with dignity and grace allowed our forebears to find their ultimate relationship with nature, and the beat goes on — although we are no longer just an agrarian country — the heartbeat of the Earth rumbles on — and we all would do well to hearken to the cavernous throb of the Universal harmonics that reverberates throughout our lives.
I sometimes long for those simpler times — yet I know they were not a panacea of delight and joy. Life was often short, and often tragic — but the sense of community, of family and of home seemed so much stronger and resilient. A man’s word was his bond, a handshake sealed the deal, honor – integrity – decency – morality were the norm. Perhaps I miss the camaraderie within a town, village, community, neighborhood — we are all so busy today.
So — take a moment during this Vernal Equinox as the Sun stands still — and feel the history, of those times long ago — and join in the ancient acknowledgement of our Earth’s synchronization as we move through the vastness of Space. Be still for a few seconds as you become part of the whole — breathe in the beauty and sacredness of life.