A peculiar thing happened to me yesterday. I was doing the dishes when I thought to myself, “Why does it smell like something is burning?” I checked the stove and the oven and nothing was burning. So I carried on doing the dishes. Once again I thought I could smell burning, only this time I could actually see billowing smoke from the bedroom and quickly dropped what I was doing. I rushed into the room in a daze of confusion wondering what on earth could be on fire. I was also wondering why the heck the fire alarm in the room had not gone off, especially since it had gone off twice this week for simply having used the oven broiler. I scanned all around, but could not see the source of the smoke. Then I dashed into the bathroom, and again stood in a state of confusion until I noticed the garbage bin. I grabbed it and stuck it in the shower stall. Finally, I recalled that earlier I had tossed out what seemed to be a snuffed out incense cone nub. I was so surprised that this happened because I am normally extremely careful about this kind of thing. When I dumped out the contents of the garbage into a bowl of water I noticed that aside from a couple of cindered tissues, the contents were entirely my hair from a few days worth of showers.
Staring down at my charred clumps of hair triggered a thought. “Isn’t it strange that a snuffed incense nub burned a basket of your hair with no flames and filled this entire apartment with smoke - never setting off the fire alarm?” I continued pondering as I threw open every window and door in the apartment allowing the fresh, new Autumn air to fill the rooms. Then it hit me! “Isn’t it the day after the Autumn Equinox and the day before the full moon?” I recalled having been to Native full moon ceremonies in the past where some of those attending would bring a cluster of their hair to place in the fire to rid themselves of their past and of old energies. Every crevice of my apartment now smelled of smoke – erasing the energy of the past and forcing me to bring in the fresh, new energy of autumn. Not surprisingly, these last couple of months and this week in particular have signified endings and new beginnings for me. My father recently passed away which opened new relations with my sisters, and this week I am graduating from a course that will help me embrace new abundance. I am also receiving my first Reiki initiation and am completing my Munay-Ki mentorship which will allow me to pass the rites on to others. Not to mention I have rekindled an old flame that needed healing and attention – Massage Therapy. I am pleased to announce that after eight years of agonizing separation, I am soon returning to school to complete the program. I will be finalizing re-admission when? You guessed it! This week.
Autumn is a time of shedding and releasing and a time to honour your harvest – the fruits of your will and labour. So here’s my suggestion to you. Tonight, consider creating your own burning ritual (one less dramatic perhaps). Find some hair from a hairbrush or the bathroom trash seems to be good place. If you don’t have any, snip a small locket from the underside of your hair. Light a candle and burn some sage, cedar or whatever you have on hand to clear the space. Take a moment to ponder what has burned away in the summer sun and what fresh, new situations are blowing in on the autumn breeze. Then honour everything you put in place to make this happen. With a small bowl of water on hand, light your bundle of hair and before the flame gets out of control, place it in the bowl of water. Give thanks and gratitude for your abundance and give an offering of thanks to the cycles of Nature and Grandmother Moon for guiding you on this journey.