It was wonderful to see so many of you at our beautiful Autumn Festival this week. Our festivals are all really special and are truly the place where the fabric of our school community is woven together. It is heartwarming to see all of our students, from Kindergarten to Year 12, joining together to celebrate. Our Year 12 students gracefully, and at times playfully, held the space on centre stage, whilst the Kindergarten children were totally captivated by the music and verses. I particularly enjoyed watching the senior students helping our younger students with the dancing on the green.
Autumn is a time when we feel a change in the air, in the quality of light and in the temperature. With this change, we start the process of ‘coming in’ from our outer experience of the summer months (think of how we feel at those summer bbqs, picnics and beach visits). As we begin a more inward journey, we ‘meet ourselves’ and have a quieter and more direct experience of our own thoughts and feelings as we experience the world. This can make us feel a bit uncomfortable, a bit grumbly, a bit disconcerted. As teachers, we often notice this in the playground – the level of dispute and playground squabbles can rise during the autumn months. With this change and this unsettled feeling, comes the call to find that part of ourselves that is brave and true, which knows what is right and is willing to stand tall and strong in this knowledge. This is the part of us which has courage, empathy and clarity.
The call of autumn, is the call to find and work with the understanding of what is good and true which we each hold within ourselves. I would like to close this week with a quote from Sven Lorentson, a priest from the Christian Community in Oslo, Norway.
“In our time we can see, above everything else, the individual human being’s capacity for freedom. We are continually presented with new problems, which we have to make decisions about and develop a stance in relationship to ourselves. Because there are no longer any hard and fast moral rules or clear ethical guidelines that can help us, the impulses for right deeds have to be brought out from within ourselves: What we in the moment can see and feel as right and true.”