Seeds of Greatness

Thich Nhat Hanh, in his lovely book Peace is Every Step, talks about consciousness existing on two levels: as seeds and as manifestations of those seeds. Let me share this idea with you and how it applies to the Internal Arts.

When we are born, we are like sterile ground, open and ready to receive seeds that our parents and society plant in us. When our mother holds us in her arms, the seed of love is planted. If a parent slaps us out of frustration, the seed of fear is planted. Anger, joy, hope, disappointment, etc., all have seeds and these seeds lie in us, waiting for the right conditions to manifest.

The beauty of this concept is that each time a seed is manifest, for instance if you feel happy, this seed becomes mature and produces more seeds of the same kind. So the more often you feel happy, the more seeds are produced, and the easier it is to feel happy again.The same can be said for joy, contentment, love, etc. The more we manifest these seeds, the more viable they are. If not used for long periods of time, the seeds lose their potency.

We all need to become farmers and sow the seeds of the emotions, feelings, and the way we want to live our lives. Every time I practice Tai Chi, I am planting seeds for health, well being, joy, hope and expansion of awareness.These seeds keep producing more seeds until I am filled with them and there isn’t room for the ones I don’t want to harvest, like anger, hate, fear and selfishness.

So stay aware of what kinds of seeds you are planting and weed out the ones that you don’t want. We all contain the Garden of Eden inside and just need to keep it healthy.