Inspiration from this week


So many of you have told me of the serenity you feel or have felt among trees.  This week I read this in a newsletter and had to share it here.  With all my love…inspiration from this week:

Trees are Sanctuaries
by Herman Hesse

[Listen to Audio!]

Nothing is holier, nothing is more exemplary than a beautiful, strong tree. When a tree is cut down and reveals its naked death-wound to the sun, one can read its whole history in the luminous, inscribed disk of its trunk: in the rings of its years, its scars, all the struggle, all the suffering, all the sickness, all the happiness and prosperity stand truly written, the narrow years and the luxurious years, the attacks withstood, the storms endured. And every young farm boy knows that the hardest and noblest wood has the narrowest rings, that high on the mountains and in continuing danger the most indestructible, the strongest, the ideal trees grow.

Trees are sanctuaries. Whoever knows how to speak to them, whoever knows how to listen to them, can learn the truth. They do not preach learning and precepts, they preach, undeterred by particulars, the ancient law of life.

A tree says: A kernel is hidden in me, a spark, a thought, I am life from eternal life. The attempt and the risk that the eternal mother took with me is unique, unique the form and veins of my skin, unique the smallest play of leaves in my branches and the smallest scar on my bark. I was made to form and reveal the eternal in my smallest special detail.

A tree says: My strength is trust. I know nothing about my fathers, I know nothing about the thousand children that every year spring out of me. I live out the secret of my seed to the very end, and I care for nothing else. I trust that God is in me. I trust that my labor is holy. Out of this trust I live.

When we are stricken and cannot bear our lives any longer, then a tree has something to say to us: Be still! Be still! Look at me! Life is not easy, life is not difficult. Those are childish thoughts. Let God speak within you, and your thoughts will grow silent. You are anxious because your path leads away from mother and home. But every step and every day lead you back again to the mother. Home is neither here nor there. Home is within you, or home is nowhere at all.

A longing to wander tears my heart when I hear trees rustling in the wind at evening. If one listens to them silently for a long time, this longing reveals its kernel, its meaning. It is not so much a matter of escaping from one’s suffering, though it may seem to be so. It is a longing for home, for a memory of the mother, for new metaphors for life. It leads home. Every path leads homeward, every step is birth, every step is death, every grave is mother.

So the tree rustles in the evening, when we stand uneasy before our own childish thoughts: Trees have long thoughts, long-breathing and restful, just as they have longer lives than ours. They are wiser than we are, as long as we do not listen to them. But when we have learned how to listen to trees, then the brevity and the quickness and the childlike hastiness of our thoughts achieve an incomparable joy. Whoever has learned how to listen to trees no longer wants to be a tree. He wants to be nothing except what he is. That is home. That is happiness.

About lchavez64

Seeker. Dreamer. Ordinary girl.

6 responses to “Inspiration from this week

  1. Vicki

    Love, love , love!!!

  2. Cindy Balfour

    Linda, thank you for this, everything you shsre comes atcthe prfect moment.

    Be where you are. Was the thought that popped into my head. As I read this. I sometimes forget that I am small speck in His bigger plan. Humbling and uplifting.

    • I think my favorite line for today (will probably change;) is “My strength is trust.” The encouragement to trust has been such a thread running through these last weeks. It also reminds me of another quote I read earlier today: This is my secret…I don’t mind what happens. Such challenging and yet hopeful thoughts!

  3. Ann Patnaude

    Thank you for sharing, Linda. My favorite line is: “the hardest and noblest wood has the narrowest rings, that high on the mountains and in continuing danger the most indestructible, the strongest, the ideal trees grow.” It is a reminder for me that growing and strength can occur at the times when I am most weak and vulnerable, and instead of resisting those moments, to embrace them. Gorgeous reflection. I’m going to continue to meditate on it.

  4. I agree allowing, rather than resisting, seems to be the key to growth and strength. I also love the image of trees standing still—they don’t have to “do” anything to become marvelous.

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