EMPATHY WITH PLANTSA combination of experimental exercises
Stephen BuhnerI listened to a series of Stephen Buhner's videos on Plant Intelligence. There is a story about monkeys who feel ill – and search for appropriate healing herbs. (It's in the 2nd video and starts at 1.39).
They lick the plant before eating it. The plant then responds and produces enzymes appropriate to the stimuli in the monkey's saliva. Wonderful and obvious once it's pointed out... the healing power of a dead dried herb can never be as efficient as a living sensitive herb that you've comminicated with. It's a vast subject and i'm glad Buhner is studying it.
Anyway, this started me off experimenting with a meditation on empathising with plants.
Sensitivity to Taste and LightI started tasting inside, (we have a sense of taste all over our bodies), and then seeing light all around with the eyes closed, (and please read these pages if you haven't already done so).
The self-taste and sensitivity to light, seem to be the basis for most plants self-awareness.
Seeing light with the eyes closed is something which is easy to do once you start doing it, (which for me means that it's natural) and this leads to a feeling that you have light passing through your skin all over your body which i imagine plants experience (leaves are translucent etc.).
Usually people see stars or squiggly lines or kaleidoscope images or etc. when they close their eyes, and this is as a result of focusing. By panoraming with the eyes closed, paying attention especially to the sidewards peripheries, you see light all around.
The Brian is in The RootsThen following his idea (and other plant researchers) that the brain is in the roots – imagining my feet being the roots, with heels as the main stem and runners branching out; and the brain stem, like two spines, running down my legs. This is also surprisingly easy to do, and activates a very nice energy in lower legs.
I've done this several times now, and why in 'earthing exercises' did i never think of this before? : roots growing out of the feet! – I also started experimenting with listening through the roots. In the fashion of the wild west indian putting his ear to the ground to hear distant buffalo or horses, sound travels through the earth, so i imagine plants hear with their roots.
It all leaves me with an uncontrollable urge to sink my feet in mud.
The FlowerBut every now and again i came back into my head, and wondered what the head was and thought of flowers.
I thought of how with fly catchers the head is like a hand or mouth. Then thought of normal flowers with their scents and colours, and bees and realised actually my head, my flower, was the genitals – so i laughed a few times but found it quite difficult to imagine my head as genitals, easier as a vagina than a penis.
So i'm wondering what else the flower is and does – and some flowers follow the sun around, so the flower can obviously focus. I'm still wondering how the flower fits in the plant's self-awareness... it seems to be a point of great sensitivity, and so i've been empathising with plants which have flowers at the sides with flowering areas from the head to hands...
Panoramic and Focused SensingBuhner doesn't distinguish between and shows no awareness of the difference between a plant's panoraming and focusing sensory abilities.
I imagine that plants senses are always basically panoramic, except for the flowers focusing on the sun, or when subjected to a specific stimulus as with Buhner's monkey.
Breathing and Research NotesSo all these are very naive ideas from me, but the idea of empathising with plants had never occurred to me previously and i find it very stimulating, have done it several times now, and i really appreciate Buhner leading me to this new area.
I'm sure to google for "function of flowers" and "how do plants breathe" sometime – but i always find it useful to spend a bit of time just empathising and using imagination before i go to the scientific explanations.
Plants obviously breathe out because they have a scent, and they breathe in because there's a difference between daffodils growing at the side of the road, and in a field full of cow shit. But I wonder if plants breathe in and out at the same time, or if the shadow side breathes in while the sunny side breathes out...?... whatever, it's a lovely thing to think about... !
Please continue with Experiments and Combinations