Gardening is not just a set of tasks. It’s not restricted to backyards, courtyards, balconies. It can, and should, happen anywhere, everywhere. Gardening is simply a framework for engagement with our world, grounded in care and action. To garden is to care deeply, inclusively, and audaciously for the world outside our homes and our heads. It’s a way of being that is intimately interwoven with the real truths of existence—not the things we’re told to value (money, status, ownership), but the things that actually matter (sustenance, perspective, beauty, connection, growth).
– Georgina Reid, Audacious Gardening: On Daring to Care
“Healing involves discomfort, but so does refusing to heal. And, over time, refusing to heal is always more painful.”
"To seek approval is to seek dependence; to seek dependence is to lose your sense of self... That's the paradox of approval seeking: our very attempt to prove our worth and value means that we believe that our worth and value can be proven."
— Pavel Somov, "Present Perfect"
When we confront the foundations of our systems of learning and challenge the assumptions that underlie the design of culture, new opportunities for engagement between people and their environment are found waiting. Windows into the world's unlimited potential open, revealing that mediation of experience is untenable and the only limiting factor to innovation is creativity. Indeed, experimentation is always needed to find better alternatives. Without risk-taking, we'll never discover what's possible. Just as any historian of science knows, major advances in science are not made in small steps, but by leaps and bounds that are largely guided by intuition, chance, and a willingness to challenge dogmas. Often, these shifts come about by curious hobbyists. As Aristotle once stated, "It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it." Or, in other words, one should be both skeptical and open-minded, just not so open-minded that their brain falls out.
Peter McCoy, Radical Mycology, Toward a Radical Mycology (XVIII)
An ecological understanding allows us to identify "things"—rain, cloud, river—at the same time that it reminds us that these identities are fluid. Even mountains erode, and the ground below us moves in giant plates. It reminds us that—while it's useful to have a word for that thing called a cloud—when we really get down to it, all we can really point to is a series of flows and relationships that sometimes intersect and hold together long enough to be a "cloud."
Our senses are living organs intended to receive communications. They connect us to, interweave us with, the stream of informational energy that comes to us every moment of every day that we live. Focusing perception through the senses immerses the self in the Earth’s sensory flows.
kind of like taking a bath in colors, sounds, and tastes
To immerse the self in the wash of the world’s communications, to feel the touch of the Earth through the body, brings the entire body alive. The way it was when you were young.
Attending to sensory communications from the world dissolves the boundary between self and world. It is a crucial act in reconnecting ourselves with the life of Earth. Sensory perception is the natural and right blending of inner and outer.
The linear mind is what creates the boundary line between us and the world. Location of consciousness in the brain closes the door to Nature. But the door is unlocked.
Perceiving through the senses opens the door. The more sensitivity we cultivate to sensory flows, the more directly we perceive with our senses, and the wider the door opens.
⚘ Stephen Harrod Buhner, The Secret Teachings of Plants: The Intelligence of the Heart in the Direct Perception of Nature
"When I speak of the spiritual, I refer to the recognition within everyone that there is a place of mystery in our lives where forces that are beyond human desire or will alter circumstances and/or guide and direct us. I call these forces 'divine spirit.' When we choose to lead a spirit-filled life, we recognize and celebrate the presence of transcendent spirits."
In order to be free, you simply have to be so, without asking permission of anybody. You have to have your own hypothesis about what you are called to do, and follow it, not giving in to circumstances and complying with them. But that sort of freedom demands powerful inner resources, a high degree of self-awareness, a consciousness of your responsibility to yourself and therefore to other people. Alas, the tragedy is that we do not know how to be free — we demand freedom for ourselves at the expense of others and don’t want to waive anything of our own for the sake of someone else: that would be an encroachment upon our personal rights and liberties. All of us are infected today with an extraordinary egoism. And that is not freedom; freedom means learning to demand only of oneself, not of life or of others, and knowing how to give: sacrifice in the name of love.
∆ Andrei Tarkovsky, Sculpting in Time