In Praise of Doing Nothing
Allowing the Fallow Seasons
When I woke up this morning, way too early after staying up way too late, all I wanted to do was… nothing.
Doing nothing is, for most of us, remarkably difficult. There are always things that need doing in order to propel life forward, but we also, often, simply do things— constantly, frantically, reluctantly, compulsively, resignedly— because we are terrified of what may well up if we stop.
We hop from relationship to relationship. We multitask and plan and fret. We tell ourselves that we must make use of our time, our experiences, our gifts without ceasing lest we lose opportunities, love, momentum. As if everything is entirely in our conscious control, and if we loosen our hold for even a moment the world will cease to spin.
I unexpectedly ran into an old friend on the street the other day. We realized that we first came to know each other nearly 12 years ago when we started astrology school together. It feels like a million years ago now, and I realize that is in large part because the last dozen years have been so full of learning and transformation for me. Not on purpose, mind you. Most of that learning and transformation has come from not being able to do a damn thing, from having to simply allow reality to be without my constant grasping, striving, manipulating, and avoiding.
I’ve had to learn to lie fallow, to submit to death and grief and silence and waiting. To understand that sometimes the deepest, most important workings happen beneath the surface, far beyond my conscious reach, on a time scale that exceeds my conscious sight. I can’t make sense of it all while it’s happening. I don’t know what the outcome will be. All I can do is look around me at the natural cycles, the inevitable seasons of death and dormancy, and trust that I, too, am a part of all of that.
To live a vital, creatively fertile, embodied life of integrity I’ve had to learn to allow for the fallow seasons— the natural composting and conversion of the stuff of my life into deeper, richer soil for growth when I stop actively cultivating, grasping, doing. I will never run far or fast enough to escape death in any case, so I must learn to make space for it, to trust that it matters.
Thank you for supporting my work, dear ones. I am incredibly grateful for each and every one of you. Please continue to help this project, and me, grow by sharing with your networks, liking (click the heart!), commenting, and subscribing in the box below if you haven’t yet. Much love, always. XO, Asha