November 22, 2023

The Darkest of Days

It is late Fall. The days continue to grow darker for about another month.

The leaves have turned, and fallen, and a lightless, cold chill is descending upon the land.

It seems to be affecting me more this year than ever before. I have been dreading it in every bone of my aging body.

Part of the reason, even more than aging, is that the global situation is mirroring this dismal time of year, making the outlook even more bleak.

A similar dark cold hand has taken hold globally, and there is no protective coat warm enough to halt the chill of societal and governmental breakdown.

As a result, the darkness and despair of war and destruction is seeping in regardless of where one lives.

It is not a pretty picture to witness the lawlessness and horrors perpetrated or allowed by not only my own country, but all of the West.

Are our hearts frozen with indifference? 

Those who speak out are finding that we essentially don't live in democracies any more, and are getting fired, cancelled, and jailed for their efforts.

The ones in charge aren't representing voters any longer, making one wonder who they are representing.

That realization will freeze the warmest of souls. 

Depression and despair smothers us with a heavy blanket of death and decay.

As the days darken, literally and figuratively, the need to commune with nature is even more important.

Why? Because nature rejuvenates. 

From nature we have come, and to nature we will return in the end. We ignore this connection at our peril.

Shorter days and colder temperatures invite us to slow down, take a break from the madness, and think about the abundant gifts of nature.

For me, being in nature is the core of my very being, my source of my very life. I immerse my senses in my sanctuary, the woods, and I love what it does for me.

How else would I survive till the return of light in the spring?

Dark days are never permanent, and that is the hopeful message that the cycles of nature brings.

Brighter days await in both nature, and the affairs of humanity. The light always finds a way to burn away the darkness in a glory of warmth and cleansing. 

That is what is keeping me going on these darkest of days.

Peace, love, and light to all my brothers and sisters around the globe.


  1. Anonymous11/23/2023

    Hi Greg, thank you for your beautiful photos and thoughts on our world. Like you I also turn to nature for succour, and find it is a balm for the destruction that is being reigned on lives not just in war zones but everywhere. I am thankful that my simple life provides me with what I need, and that I can get up every day and look out my window to see trees and birds and fields and nature just being. It can be hard not to be brought low by the disjoint between my values and what is being done to people. I read a book recently (The Earth Transformed) examining how weather has affected human history and politics since the beginning, and it cannot fail to strike anyone reading history how humans have always had a huge capacity for destruction and lack of care for others. It makes me wonder how we survive at all. Then I see that we also have a capacity for kindness and love.

    1. Anonymous11/29/2023

      There is so much good in the world. The great majority of my experience with other people has been nothing but positive, regardless of where in the world I happened to be. So many good people doing so many good things. We rarely hear about them, but they are there, quietly working in the background to keep families and communities running smoothly with love and care.

      I must say that I have personally not run into the types of persons that are bringing humanity to its knees. But I have met one or two. I used to call them losers, but now have decided that they are simply desperate for whatever reason. The desperate ones can be dangerous. Best to stay far, far away.

      - Gregg

  2. Anonymous11/23/2023

    The earth travels at pace to great yin 太阴 which for me is time of year to meditate and connect. I like the calm focus cold provides.
    It is very sad to see the suffering that is going on in Gaza l sincerely hope the violence stops, something is clearly very wrong and hurting people like this is not right. The westetn media coverage is concerning. Check out Novara media on YouTube as a alternative. Nothing is completely unbiased but Al-Jazeera give a different view.
    Peace to all beings,

    1. Anonymous11/29/2023

      Yes, something is terribly wrong, and the mainstream media is egging it all on. Thank you for the suggested alternatives that we will check out. I try not to read too much news in any form these days. So rarely is it good. Take care, and enjoy the briskness of the cold.

      - Gregg


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