Finding Balance and Joy in the Garden

August 12, 2010 By: Matsya Siosal Category: Living with Intention, Mind Body Spirit

tomatillo

Tomatillo

“Nature’s peace will flow into you as sunshine flows into trees. The winds blow their own freshness into you…while cares will drop off like autumn leaves.”- John Muir

First thing in the morning when the atmosphere is soft and hazy with dew and the birds are still waking up their voices I step outside and deeply inhale the honey-chamomile-jasmine scent of my summer garden and delightedly greet a new day. Equipped with a bowl and harvest knife I walk over a thick carpet of clover and lemon balm from back porch to vegetable beds and begin the day’s harvest. Today was a bounty of sweet snap peas, ground cherries, “sweet million” cherry tomatoes, young gold and russet potatoes, heirloom sweet onion and tender young zucchini with curling blossom still attached.

The vivid life force of these garden fresh organic-veganically grown heirloom vegetables embodies the love and attention my husband and I have showered the land with. When I am home in my garden I am so fully present. Every scent, sound and luminous texture is something I can relax into – it feels like the arms of nature or the very fabric of our existence reaching up to hold me.

August Bounty

There’s an anecdote that’s been told by several Buddhist teachers including Pema Chödrön about a study conducted in a nursing home. Residents were given plants to have in their rooms. Some were told the staff would care for the plants and some were given the responsibility of caring for the plants themselves. The individuals that cared for the plants themselves not only had healthier more vibrant plants at the end of the study period, they themselves were healthier and more vibrant! It seems caring for something, pouring our love and attention into it is as good for us as it is for the thing, or person being cared for.

My garden is my own little domain on this planet. Lovingly and consciously cultivating the earth and using it to produce healthy, delicious food, healing herbs and beautiful flowers for my family feels like a truly loving relationship with our terrestrial home. Even city-dwellers can grow their own food, herbs or flowers in balcony containers or by leasing space in a public community garden. Treating our home, the living, breathing planet with respect, gratitude and co-creative intent is a wonderful way to tap into the creative energy of the universe, a very practical way to improve the environment, be more connected to the web of life and reap the harmonizing benefits of time spent in nature.

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