Beyond its practical aspects, gardening - be it of the soil or soul - can lead us on a philosophical and spiritual exploration that is nothing less than a journey into the depths of our own sacredness and the sacredness of all beings. After all, there must be something more mystical beyond the garden gate, something that satisfies the soul's attraction to beauty, peace, solace, and celebration.
We risk great peril if we kill off this spirit of adventure, for we cannot predict how and in what seemingly unrelated fields it will manifest itself. A nation that loses its forward thrust is in danger, and one of the most effective ways to retain that thrust is to keep exploring possibilities. The sense of exploration is intimately bound up with human resolve, and for a nation to believe that it is still committed to a forward motion is to ensure its continuance.
Exploration belongs to the Renaissance, travel to the bourgeois age, tourism to our proletarian moment. The explorer seeks theundiscovered, the traveler that which has been discovered by the mind working in history,the tourist that which has been discovered by entrepreneurship and prepared for him by the arts of mass publicity. If the explorer moves toward the risks of the formless and the unknown, the tourist moves toward the security of pure cliché. It is between these two poles that the traveler mediates.
How aware are we of our own inner life, our spirituality-something so intangible yet so priceless? How much effort do we make to perceive that which is not obvious, which can neither be seen nor heard? I believe the exploration and enrichment of the human spirit is what determines our very humanity. Such enrichment provides an inner compass that can lead civilizations to greatness.