Spring garden: Soul and soil

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Spring has arrived! Spending many sumptuous, sunny days in my backyard, I’ve come to realize that gardens are metaphors for life. I’ve learned that my garden brings me joy because it is a natural classroom filled with blossoming wonders. As a way of appreciating the world in which I live, I have surrounded myself with green, growing goodness, and gorgeous, opulent foliage. Through the simple tending of plots and pots, I’ve watched my life flourish. In celebration of the many gifts found in my piece of paradise, I’ve written a Gardener’s Credo with some of the favorite lessons I‘ve learned from gardening and how they apply to daily life. I invite you to think of your own green sanctuary as you listen to the wisdom of your inner gardener…

In my garden, I learn to cooperate with the natural earth cycles, for they teach me that there is a season and a time for every purpose. In my life, I learn that everything in form must eventually change.
Energy constantly changes forms for that is the transitory nature of the universe. Every species has its own seasons and cycles, and as we learn to work with their energies we will find ourselves at peace with Life’s ever evolving flow.

In my garden, I learn that forms change (seed, seedling, plant) while their fundamental nature remains the same. In my life, I learn to practice flexibility and non-attachment.
Yes, forms will always change but the essence stays the same, for the Master Gardener is the fundamental foundation of existence. As we weed and trim the gardens of our earth and mind, we get to practice non-attachment to the outer picture and remain focused on that which is changeless and eternal.

In my garden, I learn that you get exactly what you plant. In my life, I learn that I must make wise choices.
Gardeners know that the most important thing to do when planning a new garden or redesigning an old one is to prepare the soil. What we plant is what we manifest, so let’s plant and nurture only the highest quality seeds in our minds and in the earth. Unhappy thoughts sown in mind can’t produce a happy life. Daffodil seeds — no matter their desire — can’t become begonias.

In my garden, I learn to enjoy the “Hey ma, watch me grow” phenomenon. In my life, I learn to be aware of wonder!
Joy is a sure sign of the presence of the Divine, so let’s remember that insight when we get caught up in the belief that becoming a more spiritual person is supposed to be serious, hard work. When buds are opening, I like to believe that they’re really having fun. Can we say the same about our personal and spiritual breakthroughs?

Great Dixter Gardens, Sussex, England (1 of 23) | A vibrant, dynIn my garden, I learn that every plant needs sun, water, and love daily. In my life, I learn to go back to my spiritual source for the basics.
Once, I had to leave my entire potted entourage with a plant sitter who would love and care for them. After a few days, they were looking a little droopy. I knew they were in good hands, but I wanted to visit them and remind them of home. She called me a few days later and asked, “What did you say to them?” because they were vibrant and lively again. All I told them was “Love each other. Grow and be healthy and beautiful and happy.” After all, what more do we really need to live?

In my garden, I learn that contained within the seed is every element of the plant. In my life, I learn that I have everything I need right now within me.
When filled with doubt about the nature of the universe, go meditate on a seed. The Infinite Intelligence at its core contains the complete continuum of its physical expression. In other words, relax, you’re already perfect!

In my garden, I learn that plants grow right where they’re planted. In my life, I learn that “there” is no better than “here,” and “then” is no better than “now.”
When you plant flowers they don’t uproot themselves and leave a sign that says, “The garden down the street is better so I’ve migrated there.” Refuse to buy into the life will be better when … syndrome. Don’t wait until you get more education, money, or time. Start where you are with what you have. Be as smart as your shrubs, and bloom where you’re planted.

In my garden, I learn that not every plant is a rose. In my life, I learn to appreciate my own unique beauty.
One of the saddest looking plants left on my doorstep was the Legend of Amazonia, the big green stick. I repotted it and every day I eagerly awaited new growth, but it never got any more flowers, leaves, or branches. I kept expecting it to be some fabulous supermodel of foliage when it already was the best green stick ever. It never changed, and it taught me a lot about appreciating the marvel of what is right in front of me in the present moment.

In my garden, I learn that practicing “hands on” gardening is good for the soul. In my life, I learn that sometimes you just need to put your hands in the dirt and do the work.
One fall morning, I was sweetly rewarded for my thorough, and thoroughly exhausting, weeding work. Resting under a shady oak tree, I heard a loud rustling sound in the nearby brush. A small deer emerged and began walking, and then dancing, around the garden. Spirited messengers, in an infinite variety of disguises, are ever ready to celebrate with us when we do a good job!

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Through her ministry, “Doorway Into The Infinite”, Rev. Maria holds the vision for the transformation of the consciousness of planet earth. She is a spiritual change agent committed to… educating people in the process of healing… empowering the world one creative thought at a time… and experiencing peace in our lifetime. Her articles, essays, and meditations have been published in various magazines. She has self-published numerous books and manuals, and released two recordings of guided meditations. She’s created a variety of classes, workshops, and spiritual performance pieces, where she expresses her profound interest in spirituality and peace. For more information, she can be reached at her website: www.be-the-change.com or at her e-mail: RevMariaS@aol.com.


(All photos by UK Gardens via Flickr)