Friday, June 27, 2008

What Does Your Garden Mean to You?

The things that appear in our garden have meaning to us, for example that statue of Kwan Yin, goddess of compassion. Kwan Yin has held a place in my life since my teen years. I always liked the ideal of compassion, something we all could use in greater measure. Since I have a special sense of compassion for animals, it seemed fitting to put her where they could visit.

Kwan Yin was not easy to come by. Few statues of this scale and style are available. In some, the quality of workmanship is so poor that Kwan Yin looks ugly, or scary. This Kwan Yin was perfect for me, but I couldn’t afford her. As we left the shop empty-handed, I said to Dan, “If she’s still here when we come back next year, I’ll know that I’m meant to have her.” Through 365 days of rain, and snow, and dead of night, Kwan Yin waited --- just for me. And I kept my promise by taking her home.

She occupies a place of prominence in the garden, where she can be seen from every room on that side of the house. While I made the statue a focal point, its presence and placement go far beyond mere ornamentation or landscape design.

I wasn’t consciously looking for this statue, but when I saw it, I recognized what it would mean to me to have it in the garden. Dan’s theory is that I created the statue in my mind and, through the mysterious workings of the universe, it appeared in our space-time continuum. I don’t doubt it.

Our garden is a place of serenity, relaxation, experimentation, and self-expression. Our way of making it meaningful goes like this: I say something like, “Wouldn’t a (fill in the blank) look great next to the (fill in the blank)?” Eventually, whatever I wished for appears. This is The Enchanted Forest, after all. More often than not, the mechanism for this magic is Dan, not the space-time continuum. One example is the rose arbor, see
http://loisdevries.blogspot.com/2007/12/arbors-as-garden-doors.html

How about your garden? Whether built or bought, are you choosing ornaments, structures, and plants that mean something to you? Try it. The pleasure you derive from your gardening experience will be multiplied many times over.

1 comment:

Deborah McP said...

Your statue offers a lovely musing point.

Similar experience: our "rustic stone buddha" or "garden guardian" grounds our small urban garden. (See below.)