–“Man designs for himself a garden with a hundred kinds of trees, a thousand kinds of flowers, a hundred kinds of fruit and vegetables. Suppose, then, that the gardener of this garden knew no other distinction between edible and inedible, nine-tenths of this garden would be useless to him. He would pull up the most enchanting flowers and hew down the noblest trees and even regard them with a loathing and envious eye. This is what the Steppenwolf does with the thousand flowers of his soul. What does not stand classified as either man or wolf he does not see at all.Hermann Hesse
As the pandemic ploughs through my core beliefs about myself, the natural world, and my fellow souls, I become disgusted with myself, wasting my precious privilege of relative health and safety.
I judge others, and I know that isn’t a humane or healthy response. I want to hide, be ALONE, even though that may make everything worse. I don’t have energy to ride bikes, kayak, dance, or practice yoga; nor do I want to write, or study, or explore my spiritual practices.
But then I read some Herman Hesse quotes. Every word steadied me, reminded me to offer love to others, and welcome a continual opening of my own soul. I remember what sorrow does to a person. I give myself some room.
It reminded me of this poem I wrote a few years ago, when a more personal tragedy struck.
My soul is a thousand flowers, and I need to appreciate all of them rather than ripping them up before I learn what they are for.