Monday, August 13, 2007

Tending to Yourself

If there is any way to integrate a small garden into your work life (walk to one, plant a dish garden, cacti dish garden (popular in the sterile workspace environment), terrarium, or simply go outside), you may find it rewarding. Gardening consistently comes up in spirituality literature in terms of presenting a pathway to deeper issues about nurture, life, and death through the practice of mindfulness.

This photo is of red chard in our vegetable garden that has gotten out of hand (perhaps not so mindfully). I tend to let plants bolt, and bolt they do in the heat, which lets them re-seed. But I'm a sloppy gardener (possibly a sloppy theologian as well).

Many people find benefits in tending to plants:

The garden, we come to realize, is a sacred place - not a religious experience necessarily, but a place that teaches us to truly see and authentically be. Here, too, among the lilies and tomatoes, we bear witness to ordinary events and stunning miracles - learning, from these plants and tasks, that often they are one and the same.
So consider ways to bring a small garden experience into your workday. More about gardens in Garden's Bounty: spirituality, joy and Sara York's (formerly Sara Moores Campbell) essay The Growing Season in Into the Wilderness.