Calm in the season of Imbolc

I am so blessed to live in an area where I get to experience the beauty of the four seasons. While winter has a bad rap I know that it is a season of renewal, rebuilding and planning. As I study traditional seasonal living more I learned about the season of Imbolc–the shifting of winter to spring, a season of expectation.

A couple weeks ago we had beautiful freezing frosts in our neck of the woods.

Yesterday I was listening to a class about this seasonal shift with Gigi Stafne of Green Wisdom School of Natural and Botanical Medicine. While there is incredible beauty in this season it is also a season when many people suffer from anxiety and other mental dilemmas. Traditionally one of the names for this season was the “Hunger Moon” or “Hungry Moon.” Perhaps stress and anxiety at this time of year is in our DNA?

One of my favorite commercials during this season of unprecedented world wide stress is the Calm commercial. Where there is a video of rain dripping off of vibrant green leaves and the directions to do nothing for 30 seconds. We forget sometimes that “doing nothing” is actually something when we rest in the present moment, in our body’s intake and outtake of air. In the beautiful sounds of nature and the pleasant warmth of the sun on our face.

Author Angeles Arrien says that anxiety or frustration,

“is created by holding back energy or not taking action on energy. It is a state of feeling extremely anxious because our energy, that wants to be used, is not being directed. Anxiety is sitting in a chair, but going 100 miles an hour. . .Anxiety is an energetic resource which shows us that if we spend a long time in the negative states of mind, we will have emotional reactions which affect our essence, vision and intuition.”

But our energy can be directed to enjoying the present–the beauty of a hoar frost, a delicious soup or cup of tea on a long winter night, while looking for the coming light.