Our home

What the earth means to me.. .
Earth is everything to me. It is our home, my mother. I came from the earth and I know I will return to her someday (hopefully not anytime soon). Earth and nature are at the very core of why I am drawn to spirituality and religion. The awe of its glory and harshness at once, inspired me to seek for a governing principle, only to discover there is none. There are many. As a human, we have to come to terms with the kaleidoscope of reality and the forces that shape it. The biggest task we humans have today, is to learn to live in a respectful equilibrium with the earth. A lesson that is mandatory for all humans, though I seriously doubt we will see the end of this in my lifetime.
On a slightly smaller scale my connection with the earth involves my corner of the world, western Europe. It is where I live and where my ancestors came from. It is the Netherlands, Belgium and France. I care about our way of life, our languages, which are under increasing pressure from both the inside and outside of the society. Our values of liberty, freedom of speech and compassion should not be taken for granted. No one who lives in a land where freedom was threatened severely only a lifetime away, should. Of course my love of my own corner of the world does not preclude my interest in people elsewhere, and the wider universe around us. We are more or less all interconnected by the bonds that link us to this planet in an other wise unknown universe.
Earth has an even more literal, narrow meaning to me. Earth is definitely my element. The trigger that put me back on some sort of spiritual path after I had become disillusioned with Christianity is my interest in gardening. I love getting my hands dirty. The garden is a great metaphor for human life. A garden is our natural habitat, nature plays its part, but so do we, does our culture, as co-creator. It is where both of these parts of the human experience meet. A garden will only work out if you respect the needs of the other living creatures, if you manage to listen to what is unspoken. You have to be ready to get your hands dirty and work in silence to hear the whispers of the other living things. They do whisper, after all, they have their own agendas. The earth is alive and alight with beings, seen and not seen.

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