Sunday 04 Dec 2016

Plant a Seed
M Alan Roberts

I am a gardener. I like to put seeds in soil and watch plants grow from it. To me, there is unbound beauty in all of life, but especially in plants. I think the reason that I love plants so much is because they are void of emotions. Most animals are OK too, except humans. In nonhuman animals, emotional patterns are easily predicted. That's beautiful, because, to be honest, most people make me sick.

I watch them, you know. It's what I do. I watch them and then I think about them. I ask myself why they behave the way that they do. I ask myself why they hurt each other unnecessarily. I want to understand them so that I have something that I can believe in concerning them. In four decades of living, I have met very few that I consider to be virtuous. It reminds me of a Biblical story concerning a camel and a needle.

Growing up, of course, I was taught to respect my elders. I was taught to respect all people. It was and is wrong in my eyes to offer judgment upon others. Who am I? What right do I have? Still, with each year that I live, I feel more and more that the respect that I give is not returned to me. And so I fall back on the words of Christ and the Buddha and try to be selfless. I remind myself that to give respect is not to expect respect in return. But still, I am sickened.

It seems that so many - so drastically many - people care only for themselves. In times when my life may not be flowing so smoothly, like an unobstructed Spring stream, I border on the edge of need. I long for understanding. I want for someone to listen to me and consider what I have to say and how I feel. The vast majority of times, those who I wish would advise me or just take the time to listen either cannot, or simply do not choose to.

So, I am a gardener. I work the soil. I work it until my hands blister. Gardening gloves are not for me. Feeling the sting of the dirt ground into my opened flesh clears my mind. It helps me to understand again. It centers my thoughts and helps me to focus. This dirt, to me, is far cleaner than the dirt of men.

When I concentrate my attention on a plant that is striving to grow, it makes me feel pure in a holistic sense. It is as I am. My plants appreciate the energy and effort that I put into them. My plants, although inanimate -- non-feeling, seem to sense that I am doing my very best to meet their needs. I know, if they were capable, they would do the same for me.

M Alan Roberts is a radical thinker. He has a gimlet eye for injustice, much as did Frederich Engels, a century and a half before. Still, Roberts finds a way to write effective SEO copy. This suggests both sides of his brain, his mind, work equally well.

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