During planting, a farmer drops seeds into a trench or holes wisely prepared, or presses them gently with a fingertip into well-tilled, spongey soil. If that were the end of things, the seeds would dry out in the sun or be washed away by a vigorous rain. But our farmer understands an essential natural truth: whatever happens in the dark under the right circumstances transforms life. So, dirt takes its place on top of and around seeds as well as under them.
Think of the average caterpillar, spines like dandelion fluff. By some mystery, it clothes itself in the potent dark of a chrysalis - to all appearances lifeless, its future fruitfulness an impossibility. Yet, butterflies and moths are born. Sprouts show their unlikely strength pressing up, up, from underground. Amazingly, a chick delivers itself from the dark womb of the egg, and a baby sea turtle rises, struggling with its tiny might out of the sand.
The impulse to grow through the dark towards the light is in us, too. And, while the dark can sometimes be so threatening it thwarts life and health, we must ask ourselves again and again if we can trust new realities to be born in us. Is ours a fertile dark?
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