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My Friend Sally’s Greatest Teacher and Why I Believe Nature is Worth Preserving

Endurance ©Lynne Buchanan

View towards Heaven ©Lynne Buchanan

Broken Heart ©Lynne Buchanan

Sally's Tree ©Lynne Buchanan

I recently visited my friend Sally, a wonderful woman whose path I was fortunate enough to cross in Scotland and who invited me to stay with her on my way west.  While I was there, she asked me if I wanted to meet her greatest teacher.  Of course, I said yes.  We went out into the yard and she showed me this unbelievable pear tree.  She calls it Le Pere, the French word for father, because of all the wisdom it has imparted to her.  As we walked around the tree, she showed me where the tree had to be cut back after Andrew, spoke of the damage caused by Katrina, and then mentioned the devastation wrought by Isaac.  Those were just the big ones, she said.  The tree survived several other hurricanes with minimal harm.  Le Pere was one of a pair of pear trees that were on Sally’s property when she bought the house.  A Cajun man told her that both trees would die, because that’s what pear trees do when their caretakers die or move on.  In fact, one of the trees did die soon after, but Le Pere did not give up.  After Isaac, Sally thought that Le Pere was going to go too.  Then she said the tree spoke to her and asked her to clean out the rot filling the cavity that was hollowed out from all the damage.  Sally cleaned and cleaned that cavity, though she had no experience in rehabilitating trees.  The tree slowly began to revive and this year there is a lot of new growth.  Miraculously the tree still bears fruit.

As I spent time with this tree, I was so impressed with its energy and perseverance and willingness to offer its gifts of fruit to the world despite all it has suffered.  The tree was like a metaphor for the earth.  Our planet has been harmed in countless ways.  Do we just ignore what is happening and let it rot more?  Should we let the injuries fester and kill any remaining life?  Or do we step up to the call and begin working to clean out all the gunk, the dirty energy that is wreaking havoc on ecosystems and causing the waters to rise and fires to burn.  Our planet is so miraculous and there is much it can do to heal itself, if we just get out of the way and stop interfering by unnecessarily polluting it with fossil fuels, fertilizers, and other pollutants. 

When Sally worked to heal the tree, it was also healing her.  I sensed that from all the healing I received by just being in the presence of this wonderful manifestation of being.  Working with nature brings us all into greater balance.  We find our right relationship with the universe and whatever we give to the earth it gives back to us.  Please join me in honoring Le Pere by finding ways to help clean out the rot in your own backyard and ask nature what you can do to help heal within and without...