Lessons of Autumn’s Holy Mess

As the autumn season descends into the darkness of winter, Witches like to talk about facing the shadowy things that bog us down. At this point on the Wheel of the Year, we allow our out-grown “skin” of our former, less-evolved selves, to shed. Discard the empty husk of your old chrysalis, they say, because the butterfly has flown. Those are some sweet metaphors, but so often refer to the spiritual, mental, and emotional shadows. I’ve got plenty of those, but this season I’m focusing heavily on the neglected physical things that weigh me down, too. Specifically, my house and all the things crammed into it.

Our Samhain rites a few weeks ago ignited this Witch On Fire to release, release, release…all that no longer serves my highest good. I’m here to report that there is a metric crap-ton of stuff that serves no one in my household, except to frustrate me. As in, just back a garbage truck up to my front door, and give me a pitchfork. SO MANY THINGS MUST GO! I sense a yard sale comin’ on.

Autumn's Holy Mess
CC0 Creative Commons – Pixabay

A Tyranny of Things

I’m so over the capitalist tyranny of too many things. Don’t get me wrong, I know that things are a big part of Witchery. Witchcraft is fundamentally different from other religions because of where we focus our attention. Some religions focus their attentions on the Upperworld of the heavens, seeking ascension and release from incarnation. Other religions focus their attention downwards to speculative fear of a tortuous afterlife, and ironic fascination/avoidance of the Underworld, bless their hearts. Witchcraft happens at the crossroads of all three realms, but focuses our attention most on navigating the Middle World; we make it our business to thoroughly enjoy life on earth, and we utilize material things to co-create our lives. So, THINGS…and those things tend to collect.

Star-Crossed Housekeeper

Astrologically, my sun is in Pisces – the sign of dreamers, rebels, and artists, but also addicts and the mentally ill. Then both my moon and rising signs are in Virgo, the sign of OCD-potential, fastidious, and organized. I must have METHOD to my MADNESS. I have hoarding levels of Craft supplies, in neatly labeled bins, stacked to the damn ceiling. The struggle is real, ya’ll.

My super-power is self-delusion, which makes it easy to avoid inane shit like scrubbing toilets, because I’m too busy (witch)crafting, or getting lost down some fascinating occult rabbit hole. Then my inner Virgo emerges and gets anxious over the mess and I have a panic attack. I cope by attacking the visible spaces with a vacuum and disinfectant. However, I can avoid the furry, dusty horrors that hide at the back of closets, and lurk unseen under the sink cabinets and beds, for years and blessèd years.

Until this week.

Because I’m in love, and merging my life with my soon-to-be-husband. My two teenagers and I invite my belovèd to move into our wee home–another creative person who needs his own studio, and comes with his own precious art supplies…and allergies to cat fur, mold and dusty horrors that lurk under sinks and beds and the backs of closets.

Bottom line: my kids aren’t “kids” anymore. I have been many new variations of myself since I moved into this home years ago, but our physical space has yet to catch up to our new needs. Everyone has to dig deep, let go, and clean house, because we have much to gain by doing so.

As the love songs tell us, love can conquer anything….including my disdain for chaos.

Virgo
Virgo CC0 Creative Commons – Pixabay

The Moral of The Story

In order to move forward into the next phase of life, one must ask: as my New and Improved Self, what do I now value? What things will aid me in living that valuable life? Then purge the old crap that will only be in your way – its likely just collecting dust, and a deep cleaning is good for both your health and your soul.

You can’t keep on hiding filth behind closet doors forever. Turn it ALL out. Use detached discernment. Kill the funk. Polish what’s precious, and tuck it back into just the right spot – labeled for clarity, or you may never find it again (if you are like me.)

Sounds like a righteous endeavor, yeah? Indeed. Just don’t forget that in the middle of that process you might mistake what’s happening to be filthy, heaping shame. When it looks like detritus has been barfed from every closet, into every open space, you might become disparaged. That would be counter-productive, so don’t listen to that voice – its too judgemental, anyway.

All this ugly work is worth it to free up space, ready to receive that shiny, new, valuable whatever you’ve been wishing for.

Like the trees of autumn teach us, the way to survive the end of one cycle, is to drop the burdon of last year’s leaves that we can no longer afford to feed.  We, too, must strip ourselves bare, making a holy mess. Then allow the chill severity of purification to help us reset for the next big thing.

Hail powers of Lysol! Swiffer, be my sword!

I welcome the coming dark winter.  Come Yule, I promise I will be prepared to receive you.

~Heron

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