If the falling leaves were our teachers, I bet they would have some important lessons to share with us. In the spirit of imagination, let’s contemplate the teachings of the autumn leaf as it descends gracefully into the next season of its life.
“One of the great lessons the fall of the leaf teaches, is this: do your work well and then be ready to depart when God shall call.” – Tryon Edwards
As the warmth in the air withers tenderly and briskly away, a symphony of sight rushes into the world. Though we know how the seasons work, there remains a bit of mystery and awe in the scale of these grand transitions. There is still wonder to be found in the delicate, intelligent processes that repeat themselves with such care.
The falling leaves, if they were to be our teachers here on earth, would bring us lessons in trust, patience, release, grace, and perspective. Let us ponder this possibility: that there lies a miraculous gift within each golden-hued petal of autumn, and that it is our assignment to unlock its message.
5 Enduring Lessons of the Falling Leaves
To quote the philosopher, Meister Eckhart: “And suddenly you know: It’s time to start something new and trust the magic of beginnings.”
Indeed, autumn is a colorful display of trust, a lesson so passionately taught by the descent of each leaf. It’s as if the falling leaves know that “the only way to make sense of change,” as another philosopher (Alan Watts) wrote, “is to plunge into it, move with it, and join the dance.”
Let us keep learning that change surely can be a beautiful and natural part of life. It’s natural for the leaf to trust this as true, but as human beings, we must choose to have faith in the sacred seasons of our lives.
Rushing through the experiences and circumstances of our lives limits their capacity to transform us. Let us take a gentle cue from the falling leaves, and practice patience. Everything is falling into place. It is our time to slow down, to make space for renewal.
With patience, we will see more, feel more, and learn more. Thus, less rushing in our life means more life in our days.
Though you may know which direction you wish to walk, you mustn’t always run there. Sometimes it’s best to flow effortlessly and let the winds of change plant you where you are to be.
Releasing attachment to one thing opens up space for something else. Trees don’t cling to their leaves, nor do the leaves cry that there is not enough time.
Releasing the old makes way for the new, and in doing so offers us the favorable opportunity to experience the miracle of life from the unique viewpoints of different seasons, without being stuck in one place forever.
When we relinquish our attachment to past experiences, we find we are able to keep their value while letting go of their weight. The love remains, and the treasures of days gone by are carried forth to birth more loving experiences. Like the crisp of autumn air, there is newfound clarity in this new phase of renewal.
What is left, when all the leaves have been shed and the layers stripped away, is a naked soul baring its truth not in shame and not ready to die, but with resilience on this continued journey.
The new season is a sacred time to look into the past, bless it, forgive it, and release it so that you can enjoy the splendor of this season. With the grace of an autumn tree, let go that which has become more of a burden than a blessing, and let the real treasures within reveal themselves to you.
The barren maple tree sheds the old in a splendid show of joyful release. The falling leaves become compost to nourish the soil of new beginnings. By releasing our grip, too, on that which is meant to be released, we adopt the graceful spirit of autumn.
With grace, we can nourish our soul with positive beliefs and nurture the buds of tomorrow.
We can rake up the fallen leaves of ourselves and trust that it will become fertilizer for our inner garden, from which abundant peace, acceptance, and joy shall spring.
Let your mistakes be swept away by the crisp changing winds, for they are not focal points of shame, but seeds of discovery. Every season gives us a chance to change with it, and by embracing this chance, we become touched by grace–richness enters our lives.
Autumn offers us a new perspective, or, more accurately: Autumn offers us the opportunity to adopt a new perspective. It is up to us whether or not we welcome this opportunity into our hearts.
As we slowly lean toward new seasons, we find ourselves looking out at a different part of the starry universe. How miraculous it can be to sync our sight to the rhythms of life.
The autumn leaf senses the change, and accepts this chance to view life from a different perspective, and so it begins its own transformation in accordance. It, too, listens to the pull of the earth and longs to gaze in a new direction. And so it goes where it feels drawn, and enjoys the journey there.
There is both mystery and order to the way the worlds work, and we can either sense it as a burden or a blessing, a miracle or not, depending on the perspective we claim as our own. As the seasons do not fear to change themselves, be not afraid to welcome change into your own mind, and into your heart.
- What truths do the falling leaves reveal to you?
- What lessons are you reminded of during autumn?
- Are you willing to release that which doesn’t serve your continued growth?
- How has letting go of painful perspectives, frustration, grudges, or expectations helped you grow happier?
Please share your thoughts, insights, lessons learned, experiences, and your love for autumn with me in the comments.
Share these thoughts with someone who may appreciate them.
Embrace the season of your life.