April 9–Nature: What is unseen

I had a conversation with a plant recently.  It was a wildflower, of that I’m sure.  No flower yet.  In fact, barely green leaves pushing up from the ground.  I sat for a little while just taking it in.  Black, rich mud near a riverbank pushed up close around the crown of the plant that was just coming out of the ground.  Most of the leaves were tiny, but a few had pushed up well above the ground and were relishing the sunshine that poured across the new plantground.  The quality of greens found in the few dozen leaves of this new springtime plant were almost too rich to be real.  So, I touched them.  Gently.  They were real–the leaves and the colors.  Incredible life this planet Mother is capable of bringing forth!

I asked the plant what it knew that might be insight for me.  (I know, talking to a plant sounds crazy, but you might just try it sometime.  Keep the questions simple and do a lot of listening).  I wondered if I even expected an answer, but after a few minutes of silence, I got this image in my mind.  Below this small circlet of brilliantly green new leaves was, in the dark of the mud, a vast network of white roots–large main roots that mostly went down, and microscopically small roots that branched out horizontally.  I could see that where these roots, large and small ended, the tips of the roots of other plants like this one came and just touched. I had seen half a dozen other plants like this one on my walk down to the river.  I could sense that the tips of the roots were talking to each other as well as drawing nourishment up to this one plant I was seeing.  The roots were feeding and creating community–all beneath the surface of things.

Message:  There is so much more about you and me that is unseen–giving life, support, nourishment and communion with a host of other beings to those parts of us that are seen.

Not sure about that?  Just ponder those parts of yourself that no one ever sees.  Do these aspects of yourself–good, bad, ugly, strange, unique, unexplainable, unintelligible, deep feeling and understanding beyond words–inform and shape the parts of you that others see?

The plant seemed clear: that vast unseen part of itself was incredibly important.  How about you?

Bob Patrick

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