One day, a young boy called Sunny was not feeling very sunny. In fact he was feeling quite cross. As he walked along the forest path, he picked up a stick and started to thwack whatever was in sight. He thwacked the grass and the flowers, and then he started thwacking the branch of a tree. It wasn’t making him feel any better but he didn’t know what else to do with himself, so he just kept whacking the tree until his Grandpa came up behind him.
“Sit down Sunny” he said, “I’m going to tell you a story.”
“It’s the story of creation” his grandpa continued as Sunny flopped down on the ground next to him.
“In the beginning there was Nothing. All was a void, utter blackness. It was an emptiness that was full of expectancy, a Nothing waiting to happen. A Nothing that was full of everything.” He paused to let it sink in.
“This Nothing was just like you Sunny – it was bursting to create something. But still it was Nothing. But slowly this emptiness reached a peak of nothingness and in the blackness of the void, burst a bright white light. Brilliant and bright in the surrounding blackness. And within this light slowly formed a white Lily, gentle and pure, soft and sweet.
So here there was, this one lone flower in the midst of a great void. This Lily shining bright white light in a world of darkness.
And then ever so slowly from the flower grew a stem and leaves sprouted out, and the stem kept growing downwards and began forming roots. And around the roots, soil started to form surrounding and holding the roots softly. And the soil continued to grow around and down until the whole Earth was formed, with rivers and oceans and water with which to nourish the Lily.
And from the soil popped up other plants, flowers, trees and bushes to keep the Lily company and provide variety and the joy of sharing uniqueness.
And then came the Sun with which to warm the Earth and its nature beings and provide them with light to nourish them.
And the Moon was created to guide the cycles of life and govern the oceans and waters.
And this kept going and going Sunny. What had once been just a single Lily flower in a void of blackness, kept dividing and separating into galaxies and star systems near and far, all with their own unique position and function in the universe. And why did it happen this way, you may ask?” he smiled.
“Creation happened in this way so that the Lily would remain at all times connected to its wholeness, at all times dependent on everything else. It was created in this way so that the Lily would never forget that everything around was a part of itself, that it would always remember it was one with the whole universe. And this is why nature is so full of love, because it knows that it is deeply connected and interdependent to all of its parts – to every single other thing in creation. After all the Lily couldn’t survive without the nutrients and water in the earth and its own roots with which to draw them up, or the sun and the moon to guide and light the way for example.”
“Humans aren’t like plants though” replied Sunny thoughtfully, “we don’t have roots so we aren’t connected to everything.”
“Ah well, humans….. yes! Humans often think they are separate from nature” replied Grandpa, “but Sunny, how does an apple form?”
“Well first it is a flower on the tree and then it turns into an apple” said Sunny.
“That’s right, people are a bit like the fruit of a tree. While they are forming , they are completely connected. When you were in your mothers womb you had an umbilical cord that connected you to your placenta which connected you to your mother.” He drew a picture of the placenta and cord in the soil.
“In this way you were nourished and watered. The umbilical cord is like the trunk of a tree, and the placenta is like your roots where all the exchanges between you and your mother took place, just like the roots of a tree exchange nutrients with Mother Earth. When you were fully formed and ready to be born into the world, out you came and slowly let go of your trunk and roots, just like a ripe fruit falls from a tree. So much love and attention have gone into this fruit to get it to be the delicious fruit that it is! And what is deep inside of a fruit?”
“Seeds!” said Sunny after a moment’s pause.
“How about another creation story then? This one is about seeds.”
“How can there be another creation story Grandpa? You already told me the story.”
“Sunny, there are thousands of creation stories for all the thousands of creations.”
“Well okay then” said Sunny dubiously.
Grandpa readjusted his position against the tree and began again.
“From the deep waters of the Source arose a being. This being flew out of the still deep waters and exploded into thousands of seeds like a dandelion head dispersing its many seeds into the winds. Each seed lands and waits. It waits for the right conditions, the right timing for it to open and take root. Each seed is magical. Each contains all it will ever need. Filled with love, it was given all it would ever need to unfold and manifest into itself, into its full glory. And each little seed, when the timing and outside conditions are ready for it, will crack open and out burst the roots and the first stems of life. Gradually, all of these inner resources that are within the seed become externalized one by one, manifested into being until the original seed can no longer be found. The seed that held all the potential is now manifest. It is its fullness.”
“But Grandpa, Dandelions are weeds, they grow everywhere.”
“Ah Sunny, that is true. Weeds are natures gifts. The Earth knows exactly what needs to happen at any particular place. A seed can’t grow anywhere you know, it can only grow where it is needed, where the conditions are right for it, if the soil is ripe for it. Wherever a Dandelion is growing, or any weed for that matter, you can be sure there is a reason for it. Each plant brings a certain energy to that part of the Earth.”
He paused and then asked “Have you noticed that weeds only grow where the Earth has been disturbed by humans? Weeds are natures way of healing the damage people have made.”
“I kind of see” said Sunny “although we aren’t directly joined to the Earth with roots, we still need it for our water and food and air. Is that why we need these things?” He suddenly felt excited as he linked the two stories together “to remind us that we are one with it too?”
“That’s right!” Grandpa grinned at him. “To remind us that we are all one completely interconnected and interdependent being. We rely on the Earth to provide our food and water, and the trees to provide us with clean air just like our body needs lungs and a stomach. Wouldn’t the body be silly if it thought it didn’t need the lungs anymore, or the heart? Each part of our body has a different function which works with all the other parts, and we are just another little part of an even bigger whole.”
“Grandpa if the Earth and all its plants and animals and people are all one thing, if we hurt a another, just say, a tree for example, does that just mean we are hurting a part of ourselves?” Sunny asked.
“What do you feel is the answer to that Sunny?”
“Well Grandpa I actually feel a bit silly because I just hit this tree so many times without really thinking about it being a living thing, and kind of without really understanding that I was just hurting myself. It didn’t make me feel any good either.” Sunny sat a little crestfallen.
“Remember Sunny, life is a mystery. Just because things look separate doesn’t mean they are. You are still learning my boy. Sit by this tree here awhile and make amends with your tree self while I continue my walk.” He smiled and walked away.
Sunny lay back on the tree feeling sad and sorry at his mistake. He stroked the trunk with the palm of his hand. And slowly and very quietly, the tree dryad came and encircled Sunny with its branches and sang a sweet lullaby of forgiveness until Sunny felt so relaxed and at one with the world that he fell asleep.