Gardening: A spiritual practice and a teacher

Photo by John on Pexels.com

Gardening for some people, a hobby; for others, their livelihood, for some its the art and for some its the comfort zone. Its importance change from people to people. And never forget that gardening for, some it means nothing. It has its own nothingness too.

Despite all its image, it has its own spiritual presence and will be a good teacher for humans who are open to learn.

Just my hand, chaotic lines and a beautiful flower!

There are a lot of things you could learn while gardening or even if you grow up a single plant right from a seed.

You can be a person who loves flowering plants, or plants that give you veggies or fruits, or the succulent plants or even the indoor plants. I personally love growing flowering plants. And recently, like 4 years back I have also developed a connection with fruit bearing plants.

I know we all are in a world that don’t have time to care for nature. But it is our responsibility, which is forgotten. If you have read The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett, you could get to know how much power nature, in the form of gardening has in recovery stage and how much of a healer it is. If you want a proof, here I am. I’ll be talking about it in podcast soon enough. Instead of telling that it is the remedy, like many cult leaders, I’ll be honest here. It is not a medicine but its a catalyst for your recovery.

Ikigai

If you read about Japanese you will understand their connection with nature. Even though it brings them disaster in the form of Tsunamis and Earthquakes, if you read the book Ikigai you will learn that one of their key to happiness and longevity is gardening. Gardening gives purpose to their life, a reason to wake up every morning.

If you think gardening is easy. If you think its not as complicated as it sound. If you think its not as reasonable as your job or education. There are some misunderstanding. I am sure one day that misunderstanding will be clarified through your experience.

There are few life lessons I learnt while I was started doing gardening as a hobby, there are also things I have also attained which I will be briefing below.

Learn Patience

Cosmos (single layer) flowers. This plant grew 7 feet which is not normal.

Rather than telling gardening requires patience, I need to let you know that gardening teaches you patience by testing you often. We live in a generation where we get almost everything immediately. Small example, online orders and the delivery time it take. Despite this many of us eventually lose our patience even if it gets delayed for a day. I have been there too.

With gardening, I have been put through continuous test. You have to wait for seeds to sprout. Remember! you have no control over it. You can’t call customer care and complaint. You don’t have anyone to complaint. You have to wait for seedling to grow. Wait for it to develop bud. Wait for the bud to open. Wait and Wait and Wait. In the end. You learn what it takes to be patient. And trust me you will be rewarded.

Learn Life

There will be times where you will be put through so much. I am sure many of you have felt life would have been easy if you are a plant or a bird. Well, I do that often. But with gardening you learn, life isn’t easy even if you are a plant. You will face a lot of difficulty as a gardener that will make you realize. There is no experience without hardship and struggle. While some plant can’t handle too much water, some plants can’t handle to much sun and some need so much sun to grow. But then your neighbor’s tree creates so much shade that you have no where to go. And then comes the insects and pests. Do you remember the time Mr. Bean try to grow that watermelon? He is so relatable, isn’t he?

Ipomoea also known as Railway creeper

Well, that is not the end. There comes your dog that make a mess. You have nothing to do but sit in the corner and cry and then comes the cat out of nowhere. Even the plants go through so much and amidst everything it survive and gives you flowers. Isn’t that rewarding.

In the eyes of others its just a mere flower. But only you know its value. You know how many hardship it handled to give its colorful and fragrant flower. This is life. Well some plants get the luxury to grow without trouble unlike others. Well that’s life too. Its unfair. But it is life.

Learn that its all about Give and Take

cosmos 3 layer and my messy garden

Being a gardener is like building a relationship with nature. Gaining the trust of nature is not easy. Gaining the trust of a plant and soil needs something more. You will learn at times that it takes so much of giving. You need to give your time, effort, sweat and water. You need to protect and at the same time you need to believe nature and give the space it need. You will learn it along the way. And for all your time and effort you will be given the best result.

Learn Perseverance

Sometimes no matter what you give. You won’t get the result. I will be honest here. It took 2 years for me to gain trust of the soil and plants. 2 years back, during summer, I ordered 15 variety of seeds and sowed in the garden. It was a tedious work. But it kept me going. Of course its not a success. Some sprouted and not even one succeeded to grow. I was about to give up.

Marigold

And then before winter I have ordered again. Its hard to give up sometimes. I don’t want to believe that I am a failure. I wasn’t able to spend enough time like I did previously because of college work. But I did my best. I was successfully able to grow up 3 marigold plants and enjoyed its flowers till the next summer. Out of 15 varieties, 3 survived. It felt good. A door to persevere.

But still I want to know the extent my perseverance can take me. And before our first lockdown in 2020 I have ordered some seeds. I was able to help almost 8 variety of plants to grow. I have convinced my subconsciousness. This is huge. This has affected my mental wellbeing. It has increased my confidence level indirectly. Shattered my negativity.

Learn Plants

Sunflower and Spider- A love story

Interest in gardening will indirectly make you a garden nerd. We humans should inherently have the skill to identify plants and species just by looking at them. But we have lost it thanks to.. I don’t know who to blame. I seriously don’t know. Anyways, you will learn to differentiate plants, learn about different flowers, their family, their needs. You can identify them just by their leaves. You will get to understand them and its a lot of fun.

Let Your Eyes Enjoy

With blooming season, you will welcome the garden with guests. A lots of butterflies and buzzing bees swarm in your garden. A delightful sight for your eyes and ears plus you can fill your Instagram feed with flowers and a beautiful backdrop. You will also get noticed and become popular among ants, insects, garden lizards and birds. Added advantage.

We all are a part of nature. I have personally seen people who have completely detached from nature and connect only when they wanted something from it. But we also need to give to build a relationship. Saying that you love nature without giving a part of you to it is just one sided.

Gardening will recharge your soul spiritually! It will give you a reward and answer to many questions you have in the form of experience.

By NBsakura

A solivagant, who is trying to cherish every moment through every journey that I'm destined with.

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