Monday, October 18, 2010

seeds

Today I planted some seeds.
I planted thoughts: some about how good God is and some about how stupid people are.
I planted ideas: some about how to get my work done this week and some about how to get out of commitments I have made.
I planted words: words of kindness to a stranger and words of pride to a friend.
I planted attitudes: admiration for some colleagues and judgments against some others.
I planted pictures: beautiful yellow leaves on the trees outside and overpriced designer clothing that I will never be able to afford.
I planted sounds: the laugh of Dean on the phone and the swearing of strangers on the street.
I planted a few criticisms as well, mostly of myself. Some of my body, some of my tardiness, some of my lack of love for others.
I planted a fantasy or two: one about praise I would get for an assignment and another about the look of disappointment on my professor's face when I failed to do well.
A bit of doubt jumped in the ground, too. Self-doubt and doubt that I can trust others.
I planted some weariness at the end of the day, as well as some satisfaction over two big tasks completed.

These seeds will all grow over the next few days. They will become bigger and stronger and more of what they are. What I plant, I will harvest. What I go back to over and over again, will become larger in my life. What I let my mind dwell on, will be what begins to influence and guide my thoughts. I try to pick my seeds carefully, but I sometimes forget the law of sowing and reaping.

Today I read these words which I was happy to put in my soul garden:

It remains an experience of inestimable value that for once we have learned to see the great events of history from below, from the perspective of the excluded, the suspected, the ill-treated, the powerless, the oppressed and despised, in short, the suffering.

If only no bitterness or envy has gnawed at our hearts at such a time, so that we can see the great things and the small, happiness and misery, strength and weakness with new eyes, so that our perception of the significant, of humanity, justice and mercy has become clearer, freer and less corruptible; so that personal suffering becomes a more useful key, a more fruitful principle for viewing and actively understanding the world than personal happiness.

- Dietrich Bonhoeffer, German theologian who was killed for his stance against Hitler during WWII.

Thanks to Michael Jones for reminding me about the importance of sowing well.
This is a picture of one of my favourite seed flowers: the sunflower, here in an arrangement in a country church at the Fall Festival.

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