Trees have a much bigger purpose than to simply provide shelter for us as well as food and clean air. Trees, just like any person that comes into our lives, have a lesson to teach us.
I know that trees, considered as inanimate organisms are widely viewed as an inferior race of beings. However, it is my understanding and firm belief that there is no such thing as an inferior or a superior being. Do not let that, however, confuse you as to what our responsibility and relationship is to one another.
Trees and plants are very special to me. I believe that they are wiser and happier than we will ever be. That’s because trees are living beings that offer the least resistance to the source from which we all come. And yet, without them, life would not be possible for most organic life on the planet.
It’s impossible to imagine a world without vegetation. Although they do not move around, speak, or interact with each other like any other organism on the planet, they rule the world and are an integral part of the existence of each and every one of us.
We spend the majority of our daily lives without paying any attention to the trees, how they support our lives and most importantly, the lessons that we are to learn from them.
What follows is a set of basic principles that I learned from the trees that surround us, and that I am convinced will dramatically improve the quality of our lives, if we take the time to learn and apply them.
Seemingly Endless Patience
Take a tree whose seed has been planted in the ground during the cold season. The air is dry and there is very little sunlight. An acorn seed for example will remain in the ground for the whole winter, preserving its energy, almost in a state of perpetual meditation.
The seed of an acorn will gather all its strength, and wait not for the right moment, but for the perfect one. It will not break out from the ground one second too early or too late. It’s as if it’s following a cosmic rhythm.
Every decision, situation, and action in our lives is governed by the same laws as the trees. If we pay close attention to the aforementioned story of the acorn, we can lean and perhaps apply a very basic principle for the achievement of our goals and desires: Infinite Patience brings Immediate Results.
Trees aren’t afraid of going after the water they need from the soil. They don’t feel unworthy of the cleanest water.
When going after water, a tree’s roots will break through any wall, any material, no matter how thick or resistant it is. A tree will stop at nothing to achieve its goals. Even if you cut some of its roots, the tree will grow new ones and will begin going for its objective, regardless of how wounded it was previously.
We tend to either give up or be scared of trying after we fail to reach a goal or encounter an obstacle that we judge too great for us to overcome. Imagine if a every tree stopped growing after it lost its leaves during a hurricane!
What tree, in its right mind, would decide not to produce any fruit after it experienced a period of drought?
Trees have high self esteem. They keep growing no matter the events and circumstances, from the day the seed is planted into the ground to the day the tree stops its physical life.
Trees don’t move like the other beings of this world, but they are the most strong willed beings I can think of. It’s as if each tree starts its journey in this world with the belief that it is destined for greatness.
Never has a tree stopped growing because its branches were cut off, or because it is in the vicinity of a much bigger, much older and powerful tree that dominates the landscape.
Yet, isn’t that what we do when faced with adversity, with obstacles, or when we are in the presence of someone we feel inferior to?
Forgive and Grow
The best way for me to begin this is with this quote: “Forgiveness is the fragrance that a violet sheds on the heel that has crushed it.”
Even as 6,000 acres of forest disappear every hour, there hasn’t been a single rebellious tree or plant. We previously discussed the fact that a tree will keep growing, even after its branches have been cut. It is also a fact that a tree will keep providing food and shelter to those who cut their branches.
It is time for us to begin to understand that if someone has done wrong to us, they are simply not yet at the consciousness level where they could do otherwise. We must understand that people will do what they believe is right given their understanding and their level of evolution. Whatever a person might do, they do it, not with the intention of being evil, but because they believe that what they are doing, whether we perceive it to be good or bad, has a benefit. Now, whether these actions benefit the individual or society in a selfless manner, will be in direct correlation with where the individual is on their path to self actualization.
Plus, no matter how you look at it, one person’s wrongdoing is often the cause of a proportional and positive action, decision or understanding. In other words, what we may consider bad always creates a positive outcome, either directly or indirectly.
Never stop growing
Only human beings will do less than they are capable of. People will earn less than they can, do less than they can, achieve less than they can, and complain that they are less happy than they can. But after a while, they even settle for less happiness than they can achieve.
Not a tree. It is a fact that trees never stop growing until they die. You’ve never heard of an oak that produced less than it can or that grew half its height. Any plant or tree will keep growing, keep producing, and keep being their best version no matter what the circumstance, until they’re done with this life.
From the moment the seed is planted in the ground until the day the tree dies, it will never stop producing fruit. You see, a tree won’t stop producing fruit because it feels repressed or doubts itself. Trees don’t understand the concept of doubt. A tree, even during drought or in a bad environment, will produce as much fruit as it can, as many leaves as it can, with no excuses.
Often times, we feel repressed , and we feel unable to keep producing. Some people give up because of tough situations. Others simply settle for way less than they deserve. They live with the mentality of “as long as I’m doing OK, then it’s fine”. These people fail to realize the possibilities that life has to offer if only they become the best version of themselves.
The tree with the sweetest fruit, and that looks the most majestic is often the one that gets protected, that receives fertilizer, and that’s cared for by people. You see, in life, you don’t get what you want, you get what you deserve. And in order to deserve better, you need to become better. In other words, don’t ask for less problems, ask for more skills. And always strive to become the best version of yourself.
Those who survive are those who can adapt
Trees are the best at adapting to circumstances and their environment. Have you ever seen a tree that’s blocked by a gate? Well if the tree can’t break through the gate, it will either climb over it, or it will grow through it. A tree will adapt to its environment in order to keep growing. It is how evolution works. You either adapt or you perish. For most of us, we don’t want to change until the pain of remaining the same becomes greater than the pain of changing.
In order to achieve success, it is crucial that one changes, adapts, and grows. Look at what happened to most businesses when Amazon and eBay became popular. The age of the internet has virtually decimated most brick and mortar businesses. The inability to adapt has rendered them powerless against online businesses. Companies like Blockbuster, Radio Shack and Circuit City are all victims of their inability to adapt.
It is the same for us human beings. Whatever situation you face in your life, make it a point to adapt no matter what. Otherwise, you will perish.
This article, along with its analysis of the tree world, is nothing but an attempt at understanding the beauty and power of life at all levels. But what else is life if not what we often call God. Life is but an expression of this divinity, no matter what name is given to it. It is expressed in various shapes and types with the sole purpose of experiencing itself through itself, by interacting with itself.
Trees, people, our environment, animals, our bodies, and everything in and around us is here to teach us something. We have an amazing opportunity to learn from them, if we can become aware and conscious. Never stop learning!