FOR those who are garden-proud and know of the pleasure and the pride in helping to establish a good ground, such people also delight in those places where tree and plant overgrows wildly, following no set pattern or design manmade. There is much beauty in both schemes. One may take in the scene for what it is and does not compare one to another in single preference; at least not to the point of denying the merit, the composition and gentle goodness within all gardens.
"I shall go to the garden to speak with my Father". Here is the holy place, where best to confide those inner yearnings. Here too we may commit all that is unworthy of Heaven, and shear away such troubles that do taunt us. Here in the garden we may collect our thoughts, inspired through scent and virtue in sweet solitary but full communion.
What need be a better chapel of worship than that of a dear garden - fortified and ever restored by the holy water (for all water is holy) that does quench leaf and creeper and flowery face, seeping down into root and runner, expiring through vine and fruit. With no walls and roof, the vaultlike domed sky, speckled with mist-puffs, affords that the forces of the Sun streaming down purify and vivify that trusting life which clings to the earth.
A community may make sacred a building temporarily or permanently to house a communal meetplace, where those may gather who wish to make statement of the outer world touched by the Divine- grand inspiration and cordial society and many a cup of tea. It is good to work creatively at setting a special place other than one's home, for the general community to enjoy in this way. Whilst halls and fixed spaces can be converted extraordinarily and with much merit to those who do decorate so lovingly, think also for prayer, that there is a garden one may find and go to in quiet times. Even simple furniture may chatter on inaudibly and interrupt one's humble communion.
There are times for gathering and strength therein, and times for solitude and inner communications. To make good a church is to forge a home for community for: celebrations and study, song, praise and orchestrated prayer, where one wishes to breathe in a golden silence and withdraw to the meditative higher spirals. Then take the stony path down to the grass, go and be quiet and feel the presence of the Lord.
We all know the excitement and expectation to be had in discovering a botanical wonderland. How pitiful for those housebound or those confined to hospital, that they may not know such sweet delight. That the depressed city-dweller in concrete enclosure, may only hold a flowerpot or cactus, as reminder of the countryside at the city limits. And where there is a public park, there is much interference, noisy inhabitants and odorous emissions, denying the otherwise peace infilled glory.
Sanatoriums of the past were one part building to twenty, thirty or one hundred parts ground. Once men sought the salt-air and the charge from the sea, they did move on to higher altitude, they did not contrast the seasons with sporting activities. They did not sleep through the sunrise. They would not decorate a tomb with an artificial flower- maybe a statue, but not an artificial flower.
Eden is still here if we would but visit. The modern world acknowledges everything but this. Gethsemane awaits. . .