The tree outside our bedroom window has been busy lately. Do you want to see what it’s been up to? Check it out:
It got me thinking. Nature is often used an example of unabashed abundance. Nature goes for it. It doesn’t say, I am not worthy. Who am I to bloom so outrageously? It just blooms. Outrageously.
So why is it so hard for us to do the same?
I’ll tell you why. Two words: the judge.
This judge can come from within or without, it doesn’t matter. As long as there’s a voice, inside or out, telling us that we suck and we’re not worthy of shining, it’s a lot harder to shine.
What if nature did that? Can you imagine?
Let’s say we have two flowers. Call them Trudy and Sheila.
That’s Trudy on the left and Sheila on the right. Trudy’s the tiny one with the white petals. She got her small build from her mother and her white petals from her father.
Now, just for fun, let’s pretend that Trudy is not a regular flower. Oh no. Trudy is flower that has been blessed/cursed with a human brain. That’s right. A human brain.
And let’s say, because we’re pretending, that Trudy can talk. That’s right. A talking flower!
What do you imagine a talking flower with a human brain might say? What words of wisdom and profundity would emerge from her tiny flower lips?
Let’s listen in, shall we?
Trudy stretches and looks around. She gazes up at the cloudless sky. She observes the soaring birds and the buzzing bees. She studies the beautiful, blooming flowers all around her, including her neighbor Sheila. Trudy takes a deep breath and emits her first words.
“I cannot believe they put me next to Sheila. Are you kidding me? She is so conceited. Seriously. Look at that shiny stem, and those fancy leaves. And those petals. Who ever heard of orange petals?” Trudy snickers. “I’ll bet those aren’t her original petals. I’ll bet she’s had work done.”
Trudy’s leaves curdle in disgust. “Look at the bees, the way they flock to her. They don’t flock to me like that. What? Did I have too much dirt for breakfast? Does my breath smell like earthworms? What does she have that I don’t?”
Trudy looks down at her stem. “I bet she doesn’t have aphids. I’ll bet she doesn’t have ants crawling on her all the time.” Trudy picks an ant off her stem.
Trudy sighs. “I should put in for a transplant. Things are a lot better on the east side of the flower bed. They don’t have such show-offy flowers over there. My whole life would be so much better if I didn’t have to live next to Sheila.”
Trudy studies the ground for a minute. “I know what my cousin Mabel would say. She’s a dandelion.”
“Mabel is one of those spiritual flowers. Always looking on the bright side.” Trudy shudders. “She’d say that Sheila’s just shining with the light of the Divine. And that I could too. She’d say that it doesn’t matter that I’m smaller than Sheila. Or that my petals are white instead of orange. She’d say that I’m just as worthy, and just as wonderful.”
Trudy scoffs. “She pisses me off, that Mabel.”
Trudy waits. She studies the trees, the birds, her neighbor Sheila. She takes a few breaths and picks off a couple of aphids.
“I don’t know. Could I really shine like that? Like Sheila does? Wouldn’t that annoy everyone? Would that bug all the other flowers? Wouldn’t they be mad at me?”
Trudy shivers. “I guess I could try, though. Like, what have I got to lose? I mean, if it doesn’t work, I could always stay bitter and resentful. Right?”
Trudy catches her breath. “So, let’s see. I’m a flower of Spirit.” She clucks. “Yeah, right. It sounds so conceited.”
Trudy winces. “I can’t give up. I have to try at least once.” She shudders. “Okay. Here goes.” She speaks slowly. “I’m a flower of Spirit. Really, I am. And, uh, I have a right to shine. Like that.” She gulps.
“I do have a nice stem.” Trudy straightens. “And my leaves are seriously not-bad. And my petals are, well . . . they’re kinda awesome. They really are. I’m pretty cool, really.” Trudy blushes.
“I am a flower of Spirit. I am.” Trudy laughs. “Hey world – check me out! Sheila, check me out! I’m a flower, gosh darn it, and I rock! Thank you, world! Thank you, Sheila! Thank you, Spirit!!!!!!!”
Okay, so Trudy can’t really talk. We were just pretending. But it was for a reason. It was so I could make my point.
Flowers don’t have to go through gyrations to get how awesome they are. They just bloom and shine and grow.
We humans get the extra-added bonus of self-consciousness and doubt. That’s the bad news. The good news is that the more we align with the Divine, the more we can bypass the voices of doubt and shame and simply bloom. Like the flowers.
Like the tree outside my window.