Plants and Humans


I have been meditating with plants, not like ayahuasa or san pedro, but like mugwort and tulsi.

I sit with the plants. I listen I breath … what do they have to tell me what do I… How can we just be together?

There is this common discussion among plant people, that I may have posted before, but I will post now. How did we come to discover all the uses of various plants, from things like willow bark to wine making.

How was it, for example, that people learned willow bark was good for a headache (aspirin)?

Did ancient peoples apply the scientific method? This seems sort of impossible with the amount of knowledge we have and the time necessary to proceed by trial and error (not to mention human casulties).

So there must have been some other way. One thing people talk about is that the plants communicated to the humans directly. Now this could be interpreted as very woo woo. But we can also imagine it as someone who is highly sensitive, just like when you are cooking and you smell your bouillabaisse and it does not smell quite right, or it smells right, or you know to add a pinch of this or that.

Just just accompany me on this epistemological bracketing – that we learn things directly from plants – if we can slow down enough if we can focus enough if we can still ourselves enough we can perceive differently.

Spoiler Alert – I have not been given any secret knowledge from the plants – however it has influenced my poetry and painting on a subconscious level – and even my fiction writing – and who knows what else – maybe my technical consulting work. These poems inspired by the plants are beautiful, one I think is appearing in a forth coming anthology, and another I have been performing in a series of VR salons. Truly they should be compiled into a book called plant pornography – maybe Isabella Rossellini and I could go on tour together with her Green Porno series. My plant poetry is – em – a bit erotic. When I used to first meditate with a new plant I would often take a bath with it. I have a very extensive bathing practice, and this is one of my core competencies. along with change management and value stream mapping. One particular plant, I felt, did not want to take a bath with me – (shocking) – to which someone said – you have to get to know the plant before you take a bath with them. Umm ok – I now take my plants to dinner first.

But I digress, I was walking along meditating on plants and how plants are different even in different locations even if they are the same species (we could say perhaps they have the same plant spirit, or in some Platonic metaphysics they participate in the same form of a certain plan)… they have different things to communicate. Plants do individuate even if it is less, even if Jung says they don’t – not all roses are the same.

I thought how sad it is that there are not enough people to communicate with all the different plants. And then I thought, ahh, this is what humans are supposed… to do communicate with their local plants -this is one of the purposes of being human. This does sound a bit insane, but what a beautiful thought, and how delicious and meaningful, and how more rich this makes the meaning of the person “human.” We are here to talk to the plants – maybe take a bath with them too.

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