“In my beginning is my end.” T.S.Eliot
As this new year begins, we have just released the old year, and allowed it to become the past. This is a time of transition or change, and transitions always contain endings and beginnings, woven together into the eternal cycles of time and life. We tend to prefer to focus on the new thing which has begun to fill our lives, and often prefer to try not to notice the endings, the losses, the release, and yet both are vital for growth and change. These pools at Black Linn in Perthshire, Scotland are ancient sites of divination, where people would come to seek their futures. Our ancestors found times of change filled with uncertainty, and hoped that scryers or seers could find clues about the future in the reflections of these sacred waters. We are no different now, but our methods have changed, and we seek to control as much of our lives as possible in order to keep the chaos and uncertainty of change at bay.
If we resist the flow of life and it’s inevitable waves of change, we can become frozen like this oak leaf, suspended in lifeless water. Trying to hard to control too much of our lives will do this, and it is usually driven by fear, fear of change. Our lives can become stuck, held frozen in an unproductive winter. We cling tightly to the things we love, crushing the very life out of them, all the while filled with fear at the thought of losing them.
Yet for new things to enter our lives we must have trust, trust that the future may contain good things, and in this trust we can release the old. These waters contain layers of the past and the future, and in the magic of the present we can gaze into the reflections looking for patterns and hope.
“In my end is my beginning.” Mary Queen of Scots, embroidered this on her Cloth of Estate while imprisoned in England.
So as this new year rolls in, give a moment to remember the old one, and be filled with hope for 2014. Nothing truly ends, it just flows on into a new beginning.