Thursday, August 27, 2020
I cultivate my garden, and my garden cultivates me.
~ Robert Brault
Her face was lit with life and excitement. She and a friend are taking off for the weekend. She began to tell me how much work she should be doing for her Doctorate as she is coming to its completion.
As a writer, I too have felt a slight guilt that goes with taking the time to go to my favorite play spots. Yet, on reflection, how valuable. I have just come back from a long weekend at the beach. A garden of sunrises, sunsets, evening breeze on the cliff, walks, swims, and vast amounts of the sky's all velvety patterned.
I tell my friend about my book-friend Thich Nhat Hanh who is a great spiritual teacher. This renowned Buddhist monk, whom I quote often on this blog, was gardening one afternoon. A woman watching him asked why he uses his time gardening when he could be writing or sharing his enlightening presence with others. He replied quietly, that tending his garden is why he can write.
Another enlightened human being Jesus, who was teaching a new way, had a similar take. The crowds were waiting for him to heal the sick and perform miracles. Yet, numerous times, he would leave the people who had come for healing and wisdom and go off into the desert to pray, rest, and tend to his sacred garden.
After listening, my young friend hugged me, "Oh, I need to hear that." And I too, indeed, need to hear it again and again for I have a garden to tend -- a garden of awareness, of consciousness, prayer, and of holding sacred space.
Two days later, she texted me a selfie. Two friends in sun hats, laughing, having a glass of wine, and sitting with the sun setting behind them. New energies, new growth, a new freshness of scent -- and obviously, tending to their gardens.