Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Hope in the Garden

Thanks to Jeff Culbreath for the link to a beautiful essay from The Deliberate Agrarian. To quote:
Freedom can be found in a garden. Great masses of modern men are shackled to the degrading work of our industrialized economy. We submit to the drudgery of efficiency, of specialized, repetitive, trivial tasks. We are, at the same time, active participants and victims of the exploitation. But when we work in our gardens, the chains fall off. We find escape. There is hope, and it is strongest in the springtime.

I have commenced to plant some seeds in my garden: lettuce, spinach, and parsley. To plant these properly, I must kneel in the soil. There are devices that allow one to plant while standing. But, no, I must kneel. And I will bow my head as I place the hard, lifeless specks in the furrow. Planting seeds in the garden is, after all, an act of faith. Faith and hope, seed-in-furrow, hand-in-hand, in the springtime.

The planting of seeds in my garden, by hand, on my knees, is a simple action of rebellion against the modern order. It is an act of wisdom and significance in the midst of a foolish and vacuous world. It is voluntary submission to an older, higher calling. There is hope in this doing, in this calling. And this hope is greatest in the springtime.

Stony Creek Digest also has Cardinal Newman's meditation on the Mystical Rose.


xavier said...

Maria- Elna:
Yes and no. I, myself, have no interest or inclination for gardening. I find my freedom in writing, reading working on my models, fixing stuff and mowing the lawn (that I do enjoy)

I do admire Jeff a lot but I've never particularly been enamoured with the rural/agricultural life. I'm a surburban boy. I like the mix of nature and city :)

elena maria vidal said...

Urban life certainly has its advantages, although I do prefer the country. To each his own.

xavier said...

Elena Maria:
True and that's the happy medium. I like the country but don't feel particularly enamoured about it. I've seen enough deer and marmottes, skunks and other fun animals in my old town to remind me that nature is there. And the woods around my neighbourhood :)