The Power and Purpose of the Introspectives of Winter

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Every human creation story makes sure to note that God, too, rests.

Yet many of us fear winters, metaphorical (of discontent?, etc.) and otherwise. It is useful, however, to study the sometimes neglected nature, properties, and principles of them. Both selfishly for ourselves and selflessly for others (especially those beautiful ones not yet born). Even tropical humans traveled, explored, and studied cold places. And while not every individual makes the journey, the understanding brought back from it belongs to all.

Finding the purpose of that which we fear is a difficult step. The path must travel through the sometimes rough territory of understanding and compassion before arriving at true love.

For instance, I have friends who are Maroons in America -- very necessary. I even belong to family that at one point were Maroons in America. But I also belong to the dipset -- a kind of dual citizenship. I feel just as at home in the hot equatorial sun of my mother-country Uganda as I do in the snow reflected, eye-squinting cold sun of my father-country Minnesota in January as I do in the Babylonian concrete jungles of New York City as I do in the warm glow of the California haze. My personal makeup is something I have come to realize I am blessed to be aware of, because it helps me understand the inclinations of my instinct toward a more immediate balance than others may prefer. I'm also a Virgo and enjoy long walks.

I was designed to both not fear winters and appreciate a 110 degree day on the shores of the Nile on the road to Fort Portal blocked by a heard of mama elephants.

We are all designed uniquely, but understanding is the beginning of the path to love (peace is a whole 'nother pow wow; there's certainly war in love). Because I understand my design and am aware of the grace involved in my existence, I am able to better understand others, which allows me to have compassion for others and, ultimately, love (even my opposition). Understanding our "winters" is equally valuable to maintaining, or constantly cultivating, a spirit of love for self, others and environment -- whether we eat mangoes on the daily and are forced to thrive in one someday, or we're so used to them we simply cut holes in frozen lakes and hunt fish when things turn cold.

Ain't no black people in Minnesota but Prince and Kirby Puckett, according to Chris Rock. But let me tell you this, there are 224,451 black folks in the state who would testify otherwise. And, more importantly, they have much to share with regard to how to understand the many purposes of the winters we find ourselves in, like the one gripping most of the U.S. midwest and east coast right now.

I came across a few good articles that help remind us of this path to understanding our winters as it relates to embracing their function on our planet Earth (the winters we know of in the universe, with our intentional limited capacity as individual humans to comprehend the Oneness, the Great Mystery, in total).

Bryan Wilhite writes that the power fueling his intrinsic motivation (just another word for love, homie; and maybe God) in life depends on his understanding of the winter season’s "yin state of rest, reflection and spiritual connection" -- an understanding that periods of dormancy are fruitful, and even necessary.

And he lives in southern California.

Chew on that for a second.

You with me?

The Power and Purpose of Winter:

(SOURCE: Fawna Chang)

Winter’s Purpose

Winter has a purpose other than to torment or thrill us. In autumn, associated with the Feng Shui element of Metal, the air is dry and crisp; the wind picks up and acts to cleanse the trees of leaves and dead branches. It’s natural that we to feel the urge to clean, purge, organize and take up mental pursuits. All of nature is condensing as if to get ready for the inward movement to the stillness of winter.

There is treasure buried deeply in winter. For thousands of years, humans have used winter to go inside, repair, rest and mend and return to stillness, entering what Feng Shui calls a yin state of rest, reflection and spiritual connection.

But wait: our modern digital world doesn’t stop (unless nature’s efforts shut down the power grid). Everything in our world seems to be on high volume 24/7/365; non-stop activity is pace of life today and it is toxic to career and life fulfillment.

The good news

In Feng Shui, the area of your home associated with winter also influences the flow of your life—the depth that allows us to connect to silence. Those long, dark winter nights have a healing purpose to reconnect us to our Life’s Purpose and nourish our inner Light: we get to evaluate our Self, our career, our performance and our direction and renew our connection with our own life’s purpose: one step back and 3 steps forward. If you are experiencing lack of opportunity, questioning your life’s purpose, or having career troubles start here. {source}

Introspectives of Winter:

(SOURCE: Heart and Soul Institute)

As we find ourselves in the prime of winter and at the start of a new year, we naturally take the time to reflect and re-evaluate how our lives are going, and what we can do to improve ourselves. Winter is a time of contraction and storage, introspection and hibernation. This is the time of the water element. In Chinese philosophy, there are five elements, which include fire, earth, metal, water and wood. Each element is assigned certain characteristics, including a season, emotions, and organ systems. The water element corresponds to winter, its emotions are fear and fright, and its organ systems naturally involve the kidneys and urinary bladder... In traditional Chinese medicine, the kidneys govern water metabolism and control the bladder...

... Like the kidneys, fear is deeply rooted, and we are often not consciously aware of even major areas of fear and insecurity. A little healthy fear protects us and keeps us from foolhardiness. When excessive, however, fear fosters a general insecurity about life and also “injures” the kidneys. On the other hand, weak kidneys generate fearful feelings, which in turn block loving experiences. Unbalanced fear is an emotion that completely stifles the capacity for creativity, and fosters a sense of separateness from one’s environment and one’s higher being. Fear is gripping, allowing for non-movement, non-action. A person may feel so completely stuck in fear so as to abandon any kind of hope in having the courage to rebalance or rectify the situation. What’s more, fear may perpetuate or even create the very thing or circumstance feared. {source}

Originally Posted 1/1/2011