As the sun warms the earth, the vegetables begin to grow; carrot and beet tops begin to appear through the earth. Bean sprouts begin to climb up the runners. The rain waters the garden and the sun encourages the plants to grow. It’s all working exactly as nature does all over our green planet. The energy and intelligence of life flowing through the plants and the soil and from the sun, creating something where there was nothing. A nearly impossible miracle that we are surrounded with every day, to the point that we’re immune to just how miraculous it is.
Our gardener loves her garden, but she is also concerned about it. What if the plants aren’t growing properly? What if there are problems beneath the soil that she can’t see?
She’s done her part, sowing the seeds, but she wonders, what if she should do more? What if nature needs her assistance?
She stands, worrying, over the garden, wondering if all is well. The carrot tops are bright green and look healthy enough, but what if they’re not? What if something is going wrong that she should fix?
She pulls up one carrot to check. Then another. They look fine, though they are not mature. The gardener pulls a tiny pea pod apart to see if peas are growing inside. They are, but now the pea pod won’t grow any more.
The gardener’s worry keeps her up at night, fretting about the garden.
Then one afternoon there is a thunderstorm. Rain crashes down onto the garden plot almost violently. Lightning streaks across the sky. The gardener has to take shelter.
When the storm is over, the garden’s plants are wet and even dirty from soil splashing up onto them. But then the sun comes out and they begin to dry off. For a moment the gardener notices how resilient and healthy the plants look. The storm has left the garden a little messy, with leaves blown around and some runner poles askew. But it’s nothing a little tidy-up won’t fix.
But the gardener is worried again. She has seen with her own eyes how the storm was temporary and can see the plants recovering from the lashing of the rain, but she can’t help wondering if there’s more she can do to help them along. She pulls up more carrots and beets, to check that they’re growing properly. They are, but they needed more time in the soil. It was too soon to pull them from the earth.
Throughout the summer, variations on this scene continue to play out, and by autumn the gardener has interfered so much with the plants that were growing that there is nothing to harvest. She has pulled up every root vegetable and opened every pea pod to check on their welfare. And by doing so she has, innocently and without malice, interfered so much with the natural process of growth and life that now she has nothing to eat. She has created a problem where there wasn’t one.
In this analogy you are both the gardener and the garden.
You are that garden. You are part of nature. There is an energy and intelligence running though you that you haven’t had to create or manufacture in any way. It just is.
And you (and me) are also the gardener. We worry unnecessarily (and innocently) that there is something we need to do to make things work. But we don’t make the planets whirl through the sky. And we don’t control the ocean tides.
What if doing less, trying to control things less, and relaxing into the wonder of the wisdom and life-energy that flows through you brought you more peace and less suffering?
I think it’s possible.Have you noticed more calm and quiet in your life since learning about this understanding? Please leave your thoughts below and join the conversation.
This post is an excerpt from the free ebook, Stop Suffering About Being Broken (Because You’re Not). Click here to learn more and download your copy today.