Here in Los Angeles, spring arrives early. Chinese fortune tellers & feng shui masters often refer to the hsia (solar) calendar and believe it begins about February 4…and sure enough, around that date I see peach blossoms on our peach tree. Our fig tree is starting to bud, and most moving is the wisteria – I see tiny lavender blossoms developing. I am a Jodo Shinshu Buddhist and the double wisteria is the temple crest. The wisteria blooms with its blossoms hanging low, symbolizing humility and sincere reverence, and I feel humbled watching it emerge.
Spring signifies the beginning of the yang cycle of the t’ai chi, and from winter – water – is the transition to wood. The days are slightly warmer, and thanks to daylight savings time and the sun/moon cycle, a little longer.
The other day I was sweeping our front yard when I saw a small object on the ground. Upon closer inspection I saw teeny sticks moving, and realized it was a newly born just an infant bird. It apparently fell out of a nest. I looked up from where it fell and surmisedit probably fell out of a huge pine tree. With its depth of branches and needles it was useless to find the nest. My husband gently picked the bird up, and brushed away ants, which were already poised to pounce & eat. It was still damp from birth, no feathers, teeny tiny, and the eyes had not yet opened. It looked bizarre, but we fell in love with it. My husband put it on some tissue paper and put it in a plastic container, and we tried to feed it milk with a dropper. It actually opened its tiny beak and it looked like the milk was absorbed. We did this periodically during the day, and at night my husband left it in his back office, and we kept it protected. We talked of feeding it if it lived, and the next morning we saw the beginnings of feather on its body, and the small appearance of eyes, but it didn’t move and we knew it didn’t make it. Somehow in the 24 hours we got to know the bird we became attached, and so we gave it a short service to give thanks and respect for its short life. I witnessed a full cycle of life that day and I was deeply moved.
So now the gentle cycle begins again, and I welcome spring in all its glory.
In gratitude for renewal and the cycle of life,
Janet Mitsui Brown, www.thejoyoffengshui.com