Daily OM for March 4th – Rhythmic Rest

Rhythmic Rest
Natural Cycles of Sleep

by Madisyn Taylor

Our bodies are naturally encoded to respond to light and dark and sleeping with the rhythms of Mother Nature.

The human body evolved to fall asleep soon after the descent of night’s curtain and to wake with the appearance of the dawn. Sleep cycles were governed by patterns of light and darkness for thousands of years, meaning that for much of history, humanity has enjoyed nine of more hours of sleep each night. Our bodies are naturally encoded to respond to light and dark and sleeping with the rhythms of Mother Nature. In the present, artificial light has changed the way we schedule our day-to-day lives, and most of us slumber for less than seven hours at a stretch. It is possible, however, to come back to natural sleeping cycles by making a few small changes. When our bodies and minds are attuned to the world’s natural rhythms, we feel calmer, more centered, and more energetic while awake. Sleep is more satisfying because we afford ourselves more than enough time for restoration and rejuvenation.

Our reliance on indoor lighting further compounds our disassociation from the natural cycles of light and darkness that would otherwise preside over our sleep. You can mimic the passage of the day by changing the quality of the light. Sleeping without heavy drapery or shades is best so you can wake up with the sun. If sleeping by a window without a curtain is not an option, a dawn simulator lamp imitates the sun by growing steadily brighter with the coming of the height of morning.

You will likely discover that changing your sleep patterns to be in sync with the daily cycle of light and darkness is easy and that you feel more alive when your sleeping and waking rhythms are in alignment to those of the earth. Nature’s own phases will be your guide to wellness, granting you more waking hours in the summertime when you will benefit greatly from spending time outside and ensuring you get plenty of sleep in the winter when you likely need it most.

Daily OM

Celebrating Our Spirituality 365 Days A Year – Mabon, Sept. 20 – 23

September 20 – 23

Autumn Equinox/ Alban Elfed/Mabon

NamedAlban Elfed by the Druids and Mabon by the Welsh, the Autumn Equinox marks the completion of the harvest. Once again, day and night stand in balance with equal hours of light and darkness. As do most celebrations held around this time of the year, the Autumn Equinox focuses on the harvest, the waning sun, and the onset of Winter. In the rural countryside, those who work the land come together to cut the last stalk of corn and sheaf of wheat. Following the gathering in of the last sheaf is Harvest Home, a huge supper or feast of roast beef, chicken, a stew of harvest vegetables, home-baked bread and cheese, and plenty of ale and cider. In Scotland, and parts of England, the man who cuts down the last sheaf is honored as lord and master of the harvest. The young woman who plaited the sheaf would be seated next to him and regarded as his consort.

In Wicca, the Autumn Equinox marks the waning of the year when the Goddess descends into the Underworld. As she withdraws, we see the decline of Nature and the onset of Winter. Now is the time we count up our blessings, give thanks for our bounty, and look within. As the God’s shadowy presence begins to emerge, we remember what it took to achieve our goals and what is needed to maintain them.