Sunday, April 25, 2010

Planting a garden

Gardens are a way of working together with nature to add beauty and nourishment to our lives. The more we understand nature and collaborate with her, the more plentiful, healthy, and beautiful our garden can be.

First we start with an intention to create, nurture and be open to what our gardens will teach us. Preparing the soil is the foundation of a healthy garden. Timing when to plant the seeds is important. Waiting for the right time of the year and even the right cycle of the moon can influence the health of our garden.

The life of a plant starts with a tiny seed. The seed naturally sends roots downward and the body of the plant upward. Seeds need a balance of water and sun to thrive and grow. We can cycle different plants that do well in different parts of the growing season. Some plants need more shade and some need more sun, so we can arrange our garden with the taller plants needing sun to shade the plants needing more shade.

Feeling the earth under your fingers, and getting a close look at the growing plants connects us more intimately to a world that we can easily take for granted. There have been books, studies, and documentaries showing that plants can sense the emotions of living things around them. Taking the time to slow down from our busy lives and find a connection to nature through our gardens is very calming and healing.

Practicing yoga has many similarities to planting a garden. Setting an intention for our practice is like planning our garden. Grounding downward through our pelvis and lifting upward from our core gives us the same rooted and expansive qualities found in our garden. As our practice unfolds, it is like a garden coming into bloom. Just as a plant reaches towards the sun, our goal is to create an expansion that gives fullness and life to a pose.

Planting a garden can be a metaphor for anything we do in life. Plant your seed with awareness, water your garden with love and dedication and fully savor the fruits of your labor.

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