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Conscious Cultivation

Report From PIA – May 27

When we’re busy just keeping up with all of life’s necessities it’s easy to forget to work on thoughtful growth. At this time of year even my gardening can become a matter of checking things off the to-do list. Today I watered plants, set up sprinklers in the early morning (and wished for more rain), worked at the garden center and brought home even more plants for the lineup of things-that-really-need-to-get-planted-damnit.

So tonight I went out as the light faded from the sky; I watched as the color drained from the garden and the world turned black and grey. Even this brief act of appreciating nightfall in the garden felt centering and peaceful.

Growth doesn’t just come in the daylight, when the world is awake and busy, I thought. Growth also happens when there is no color and we’re all at rest. No matter what time it is, we’re able to make personal progress in small moments of gratitude, attention and prayer.

Reminder to self: several times a day, stop and just absorb where you are at that moment. Drink in your surroundings and think about what you are cultivating in that moment.

Walking in the garden in the early morning, I appreciated how the rising sun illuminated the plants... but it was also a reminder to me to try to bring metaphorical light into the rest of my day. I'd like to say that this stayed with me all day, but the truth is that the thought flew out of my brain as soon as I got in the car to drive to work. How to better remember a moment like this? Perhaps I could pick up a pebble or a leaf to carry in my pocket, and use that to prompt my resolve.

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