Although the weather has been exceptionally cold for the season, last weekend I finally, after a couple of weeks of green housing my annuals, sunk them into the ground and have been nurturing their growth ever since. The ones in the pots are the ones I am most concerned with. They have a tendency to be more vulnerable to the temperatures. But fortunately we have not had it dip down to freezing and they seem to be surviving. And now it seems an appropriate time to plant seeds.
I used to have a garden on my former acreage that was 100 feet by 50 feet. “Massive” was just one word that was used to describe it. Although it provided plenty of food for my family, it also was such that one became a slave to the land instead of being able to enjoy the land. After all, when the peas are ready, the peas are READY and everything would have to simply come to a full stop in order to do the harvest, which, with a garden that size, would take days. At the time I was sort of used to that, having grown up on a farm. After all, nothing gets in the way of harvest…NOTHING. It makes me think about how often we truly over extend ourselves for a cause, even if that cause is feeding us in some way. But now, as I am in my (hopefully) middle age, I find that sort of slavery to the land to be quite unappealing. So my partner created some really nice garden boxes in which I can grow stuff.
Granted, there are some challenges to the garden box gardening that one doesn’t think about when diving in. For example, it is not the greatest scenario when it comes to planting potatoes. However, I need to not have potatoes as a main staple in my diet now, so I am not too concerned with that. Instead, I plant seeds for carrots, lettuce and beans. I prefer pole beans because they take up much less real estate in the garden box.
But every year, as I am planting seeds, it gets me thinking more metaphorically about what other kinds of seeds I am planting in the world. I have, rightfully so, been considered by many to be a facebook shit-disturber. By that I mean that I have an opinion on things that often goes against social norms and I am quite vocal about that. I can be considered to be the grumpy old man who has no problem yelling, “Jack Ass” at people on social media. I also challenge views that are dogmatic in any fashion, be it dogmatic in religion, in science, in medicine, in politics, in spirituality, in shamanism or whatever. So basically I am doing my job. Because any good Shaman will, indeed, challenge conventional thought systems as well as traditional thought systems.
In the meantime, there are other ways in which I like to plant seeds. For instance, I like to inform people who have survived abuse that they are not the ones who caused the abuse. I also like to remind people of their inner resilience and fortitude. I like to challenge people to learn, heal and grow to the best of their abilities. And I like to inspire folks to step into their personal power, take charge of their lives, and get on with living and enjoying the Path of the Heart.
I have had feedback on each and every one of those things. The feedback has been consistently positive, at least from those who are willing to do their own healing work and have me as a cheer leader. Those who wish to be codependent struggle for awhile and then, eventually, catch on. Truthfully, I am not responsible for anyone else’s healing. No one is. I just share skill sets that assist one if they are willing to also learn those skill sets. So when the feedback comes from someone that they have noticed that they are developing in a desired way and that this development is a ripple effect of the work that I have done with them, I consider that a win for both of us, but especially for them.
Every seed we plant, be it with a kind word or a friendly smile, does have a ripple effect. That ripple effect is the growth of that seed, not just in the one recipient, but in every other recipient to whom they spread that positive energy in turn. Think of it as positive portulaca. Once the medicine is discovered it is automatically shared with others. And pretty soon the ground is completely covered in it. Okay, so some of you may not like that analogy. How about thinking of it as positive Virginia Creeper? Once planted, the vines will not only grow up a wall, but will also, when touching the ground, grow outward, thus rooting in a new place and continuing that thread of existence.
In a world where there are so many negative seeds being planted everywhere, I feel that it is important to plant seeds of kindness, compassion, understanding, and honor.