I have been and always will be a lover of wacky ideas. If you can find a new one, I’ll buy it, at least for a couple of days. I choose naiveté when it suites me. Isn’t it more fun to be duped and delighted than to remain always the hard-nosed skeptic? Well, until you get burned. But when you get burned you start learning, and in that you chomp down on the most juicy parts of life.
So if time travel is possible, plants know how to do it. Just ask them.
Sit with these beings whose lives are not constantly informed by schedules or deadlines. Do you think you know how to meditate? Think again. Their whole existence is a meditation. They cling to the earth, and draw up the riches inside of it, and bloom to glut the air with tawdry inflorescences, and die slowly or quickly because that’s what their DNA tells them, and they think about nothing, they simply live. They create beauty, death, drama, and glory…effortlessly.
We also come from the earth. We have the same knowledge. We forget it because we are “sophisticated.” Sophia, who inspired this word, is the gnostic embodiment of the thought of god. She is a difficult concept to grasp, but the point I’m making is that she is all concept and no body. She is all detachment. She is no form. She has abandoned the earth and become a mere concept. Human civilization is built upon such silliness.
Time in the garden can contract or expand (or transcend) into the great meditative spaces usually reserved for the quote unquote enlightened. I’m sorry folks, but enlightenment is right here, right now, right in your face, and you might as well say yes. Give in to the feral child you really are and roll in the clover or munch on the cilantro. Doing chores? Smell the herbs while you’re weeding and the whole world is undone. Stir the compost after a hard day at the office and be reborn. Give the garden a minute and it will transport you to all the places you want to be, all the places you remember and yearn for. You are there now. You can be there forever. You can stop time or speed up time and the plants will teach you how.
Is this a crazy idea? The Garden is my Spaceship!
Take as an example the path from our back door to our garage. I didn’t want the path to look like a sidewalk, so I played with different curves by first laying down mulch. God I love mulch. Then I placed discarded stones left by the previous owner of the home, added stones I thought would match but didn’t match once I got back from the store, and interspersed them with stones left over from a different project. After off and on tweaking for over a year, we have a gently curving path of minimal but eclectic stones, a meandering path that entices us to stroll instead of careen to our cars every morning, and to our back door every night.
The different sizes of the stones and the curve of the path force us to slow down and pay attention to where we put our feet. Once we slow down, we are compelled to look around at whatever is blooming or sprouting nearby. My husband can’t keep his hands out of the vegetables and herbs, and he always has a bite of something fresh. I often leave the path and risk ruining my shoes to do some quick weeding or flower picking. In that one to three minute walk, we travel out of Business Time and into Pleasure Time. Usually we’re not late for anything important.
This isn’t the most cutting edge style of time travel, and it probably won’t make the pages of an Asimov anthology. This sort of time travel is about timelessness more than travel. It is about stillness more than speed. It’s about saying no to speed and yes to peace. It’s really about going nowhere and loving every minute of the journey. It’s about making time STOP.