Dear Plant, You are not alone

belonging common humanity mindfulness self-compassion Aug 19, 2023
sunflower growing

I was recently fortunate to spend time with a few of my closest friends ~ some who I've known for decades and hadn't seen since before the pandemic. It felt so good to just have time together. It didn't matter what we were doing. Sharing time was enough.

Part of what made that visit feel so simple and easy was the truth that other aspects of life do not feel so simple and easy right now. Extreme weather across the country is worrying, and on a personal level I have a family member with serious health issues. It can be very hard to cope with the uncertainty of how all of it will unfold. ❤️

During my time with friends, I visited a used book shop and felt drawn to this book by Thich Nhat Hanh:

I love the everyday nature of this book. It provides short verses for everything from waking up, to putting out the trash, to driving the car ~ ways to infuse day-to-day life with awareness, compassion and a sense of interconnectedness. This book has been a sweet and meaningful way to remember my visit with friends, and it has also been a comfort in this challenging time.

One everyday activity that is part of my weekly routine is caring for plants. So, I loved discovering Thich Nhat Hanh's tender and true verse for watering plants. I thought you might like to know it, too:

Dear plant, you are not alone.
This stream of water comes from Earth and sky.
We are together for innumerable lifetimes.

In his commentary on this verse, Thich Nhat Hanh wrote: "When we offer water to plants, we offer it to the whole Earth. When watering plants, we are also speaking to ourselves. We exist in relationship to all other phenomena."

In times of stress and overwhelm, it can be hard to remember that we are not alone; that we are connected to earth and sky and each other for innumerable lifetimes. This short verse is a potent reminder that the simple activity of watering plants is an opportunity to connect with our inner and outer world. We are in a constant flow and process of letting go and receiving, moment by moment. Caring for ourselves as we care for each other.

I hope this reminder helps you feel less alone and more connected to yourself and the world around you. If you care for plants, you might experiment with repeating this verse the next time you bring out your watering can. ❤️

If you'd like to practice with Thich Nhat Hanh's verse in a creative way, you could copy it on a piece of paper and make a drawing/painting of yourself watering a plant ~ like the one above. Or if the verse inspires you to draw and paint something else, please do that!

And I'd love to see what you create, if you'd like to share! 🤗

I'm sending all my best wishes that you feel a sense of belonging and connection today, moment by moment ❤️


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