Wednesday, June 22, 2005

Which Metaphor to use?

Growing or Making
Which has staying creating
here in my heart now?

Dutifully reading my assigned book for a summer book group, Let Your Life Speak by Parker Palmer, I had one of those rabbit hole experiences. Here is a man with whom I have much in common such as being a Quaker, using writing to deepen spirituality, experienced in the dark side of life, namely depression, challenging me over what metaphor I organize my life around! Does one "make" a life in the industrial model or "grow" a life in the agricultural view?

My blog name refers to my life long fascination with the turning of the seasons and also to the Buddhist concept of "turning" the Dharma wheel. Cycles are obliviously very important to me but yet I have not extended that understanding of the cyclic nature to my deepest thinking. I harbor the notion that I can "make" myself in the sense of gathering raw materials and using will to create. Frankly the idea of "growing" myself instead is daunting since my first thought on the matter is I have not successfully grown anything in my life!

Taking a deep breath I ask myself, "is this the truth - have I not grown anything?" Yes I have had gardens and eaten a few items not hauled away by weeds and bugs, yes I do have two living children grown in my body, one which is now an adult functioning well on her own, and most importantly I do have relationships which have grown and deepened over time maybe I can "grow". I begin to see that my panicked response comes not from a lack of ability to grow but that growing is a process that relies more on community and less on will.

To make something all I need is the resources and my will, to grow requires as substrate, a ground of being, in human terms a community. Although physical laws constrain manufacture, the forces involved in growing are much more complex to the point of being a mystery. Coming out the rabbit hole to find myself firmly in the land of surrendering to the lack of control and taking responsibility for my actions, in others words - home.