Autumn’s Lush Field

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…this is how the beginning of the school year often feels to me.

Full of potential. Full of opportunity.  In some ways moving into autumn and the academic year always feels counter to the processes that are occurring in nature.  The mind awakens to new pathways, unexplored relationships.  The tightening up of routines, waking the children and getting them ready to meet the school bus, these and like tasks sharpen our attention, focus our thinking, alert us to demands which in summer we simply had no need for.

But then again, perhaps we are in tune with the cycle of nature after all.  Perhaps the quickening is in response to our ancient awareness of the coming of winter and the need to prepare.  The amazing work load of an agricultural harvest forever ingrained in our psyche’s, which even with all our modern conveniences cannot forget just how hard it is to provide enough to get through the winter.

Our ancestors experienced an uncertainty in these days before the first frost.  Each day the frost holds off is a prolonging of the growing season, an increase in yield.  If our cellars will last into March depends on how long the killing frost holds off.  How will these weeks go? How long till the cold bites? It’s as if it this is the unstated question buried in our unconscious, driving us into an alert responsiveness.

Written by Richard Reeve

[Richard Reeve is Head of School at Allynwood Academy, a therapeutic boarding school in the Catskills. Also, now a 6th year candidate, he sees clients in the Low Fee Referral Clinic at the C.G. Jung Institute of New York where he is in training to become a Jungian psychoanalyst.]