Guided Autumn Meditation

Article by Susan Helene Kramer

Fall is the time of year we have to rest from summer activities. If you live in the northern hemisphere the days are shorter and evening more conducive to indoor activity, in particular I’m thinking of catching up on reading all those recommendations from friends.

To make use of concentrated reading it is the time to dip into your stash of spiritual books or those that carry a strong moral, reading about others’ experiences of what to avoid, especially. And, in this way learn how to live rightly.

A guided Fall meditation for reflection:

Begin by preparing a spot where you can sit privately and undisturbed. If you use an altar set out a centerpiece of the changing leaves, and light an orange or yellow candle.

Burn some incense, I like sandalwood. Then fold your hands in your lap or place them palms up or palms down on your thighs.

Close your eyes and begin even and regular breathing such as one count to breathe in and one count to breathe out. Do not hold your breath at any time. Regulated natural breathing is a way to calm an agitated body or upset mind, it moderates your emotions.

After a minute, let go of counting your breaths, but keep up the rhythmic pattern throughout your meditation.

Imagine you are walking along a well-worn path through an old forest. Pine needles underfoot cushion and quiet your steps until all you hear are birds singing in the top of trees.

The bird songs are harmonious to your ears and you feel at peace and at one with nature.

Occasionally a flutter of leaves gently float by to rest on the floor of winter to come, but for now forming a carpet of color all around. When the chlorophyll leaves the leaves and retracts into the tree the real inner color of the leaves is revealed, just as our inner brightness is revealed when we let it shine through caring and compassionate acts.

Along this path nature is leading the way in teaching us how to harmonize our lives both outer and inner: Outer through physical activity and inner through meditation and reflection.

Now the path is opening to a meadow where you have a chance to sit and rest, feeling the sun’s warmth, just as we feel warmth through our sunny acts in the world.

Enjoy these feelings before gently opening your eyes, taking a long breath in and slowly releasing it. Stretch out and go forth with renewed vigor, a bright attitude, a loving heart.