The Universe has a grand design. The surfaces look unique but underneath its patterns are repeated over and over.
Women’s menstrual cycles naturally follow the moon’s twenty-eight day cycle. The first week after bleeding, the system is quiet like winter. The second week the seeds begin to awaken, readying themselves for life. The eggs are released mid-cycle just before the body heats up and the colored blooms catch the world’s attention. After a few days of summer, the rush is over. The body, echoing the autumn trees shedding their leaves, releases the lining and prepares to rest.
If our bodies naturally follow the moon, then the night must hold our highest energies.
Another pattern is found in the number three, the sacred triad. Women’s ancient archetypal triad is the virgin/mother/crone. Women become crones, or wise women, when we can no longer bear children. I suspect after menopause is when we find our deep wisdom.
One signal we are on our way towards menopause is sleeplessness. Women complain of waking in the middle of the night, burning with heat. That heat is the last days of summer, the burning before the mother sheds herself of her responsibilities for her children. For many women shedding our child rearing responsibilities is a frightening time because our focus has been on the family for so long, we hardly remember who we are.
Menopausal sleeplessness naturally wakes us up during the best time of the day for prayer – 3am. I think it is the Divine’s signal to be still, to meditate and wait for our wisdom, or our guidance, to be handed to us. The more we resist our body’s natural urge, the more insistent the body becomes and the symptoms increase.
My Sufi teacher told me,
“The best time to pray is after midnight before the sunrise. Good things happen then.”
Instead of complaining, I wonder what would happen if we rose, sat in stillness and were grateful for the guidance. Would we go through menopause more quickly?
During the night’s stillness, we can find our center, our purpose and our reason for being. If we follow our body’s intuition we might be more ready for our winter, the time for us to rest and rejuvenate before we spring into life’s final journey.
It is during our crone stage that the world’s attention to our youthful beauty abates and our maternal duties pass, leaving us to simply be who we are – Divine light reflecting off the moon’s face.