Saturday, January 14, 2006

cactus metaphor

i had the day off thursday, packed a lunch, a book ("atom from the sun of knowledge" by sufi shaikh lex hixon), and a camera and walked up my street until it became a path heading up into the mountains. within 5 minutes the city had dissapeared and i was alone w/ a jungle of cactus and other hostile plants and animals.

after hiking to the top of a small mountain, finding a flat vantage point to eat and view and read, i found two things - one in the book and another on the mountan top....the basis of this revelation.

since moving here i have been focused on one cactus in particular. its a kind of yucca that has numerous spines that fan out in a 2 foot diameter around the base of the plant and a 12 foot stalk that shoots upward from the center. at the top there are several pods that contain the seeds. when the seeds are ready, the plant dies and falls over, spilling the seeds...and one did in front of me as i was reading a collection of suras from the quran selected by lex hixon as one of several versus favored by the people of tasting (sufi).

so the verse is .....

"in any and every direction you turn, there is only the face of the beloved." - 2.115

....the singular purpose of the life of a plant, especially a desert plant became for me a metaphor. the simple fact that its whole life was lived for this single moment, selflessly continuing the creation even after its own death, w/ everything it needs to protect itself in this hostile enviroment - and in its goal giving it all up in the end. viewed in this way, the plant is the perfection of evolution and we are at the bottom of the progression.
maybe divinity created the perfection first in plants, and it evolved further and further away from the source, and now here we are to struggle w/ this journey back to the source....tied up in our intellegence, emotions, complexity. seperated from our true nature - the singular purpose as creators, the protectors, the perpetuators....a reflextion of the image of god

my new goal, live life as a cactus metaphor.