Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Gardening: A Portal for Understanding our Interconnectedness

As our world becomes more and more socially connected through technology, building relationships and respect for the global community becomes more important, not less. This global community is not limited to human interactions, however.  As we deepen our understanding of interconnectedness, we must also deepen our respect for all living, breathing creatures and the need we all have for our earth to thrive, produce resources and support humanity. 
 How can children learn to work in harmony with their surroundings and this expansive idea of community that now faces us in the 21st century? 
What better place to start than with a past time that every culture on earth has in common, gardening. The earth, the dirt, the seeds, the desire to observe the growth of an organism is shared by all people.  Whether we are plant or animal we are dependent upon the same soil, air and water to sustain our life force.
Recently Lori Lite of Stress Free Kids, shared her family's spring gardening project on her blog. Ms. Lite, like many moms, is looking to foster an underlying sense of respect, responsibility and the growth of positive relationships within her family and the world. She shares a beautiful and inspiring post about her daughter and her husband planning and creating a garden together.  Read her full article and recommendations for family gardening here.  The lessons learned in the garden about a healthy lifestyle, interconnectedness, respect and responsibility will carry our children all the way through life and even into the vast  unplanned gardens of social media and technology, into a world yet uncharted by any of us yet intimately shared by all us. 

Then seek your job with thankfulness and work till further orders,
If it's only netting strawberries or killing slugs on borders;
And when your back stops aching and your hands begin to harden,
You will find yourself a partner in the Glory of the Garden. 

-Rudyard Kipling, from  "The Glory of the Garden"

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