Harvest Moon


It’s the harvest moon. The Jewish festival of Succot, when we live outdoors to remind ourselves that nature is our home. The Chinese Mid-Autumn festival, when we eat mooncakes in remembrance of Chang-E goddess of long life, who drank the elixir of immortality to preserve her love, then flew to exile on the moon; and of Hou-Yi, who turned the earth from an infernal oven to a temperate paradise by shooting down 9 of the 10 suns with his bow and arrow. In Hindu culture, it is a day of fasting, after which Lakshmi visits every household at midnight to find the devout awake to life’s bounty. For Western seculars, it is a time to remember that we no longer have to worry about the vicissitudes of harvest luck because the world produces half again as much food as all of us can eat.


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