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Pure love, glistening reflections of creation, soft dancing and descending soft dews through a misty morning sunrise; saplings, seeds, sprouting buds bearing witness to the wonder of wildflowers that melt away the strains of a cold winter, or a hardened heart; Spring is in the air,

Inexplicable beauty and exquisite grace; a mirror for humanity, interlopers, passing through life like antelope who stop to nibble on African acacia.

Trees, whose thorns fail to protect them against herbivores, emit a second line of defense: a toxic gas cautioning other acacia to produce the same. Within minutes their leaves are filling and releasing poison from their pores until at risk of peril, they diminish nature’s fruit bearing rewards, killing the antelope, the interloper;

Like the tree, literature’s symbol of the soul, we are clever, survival artists protecting ourselves with multiple defenses, but instead of learning from the trees, we forget to absorb, adapt, and bond through crises. We flee in fear, severing our connection with something greater than ourselves.

It may seem counter-intuitive, acacia killing mammoth-sized herbivores, but there is always more to the story and here is theirs. The acacia has made a mutually beneficial agreement with biting ants!

By providing nesting sites for the ants, the ants provide nectar for the acacia. In return for their home, the ants protect the acacia from Africa’s mammoth-sized mammals. If either the tree or the ant default on this agreement, a wood-boring beetle sneaks into create havoc. As the beetles bore tunnels into the acacia, it diminishes and dies at double the death rate. As a result, the ants lose their home and their ability to create sugar-rich nectar for the mammals. The cascading effects of the plant-ant dynamic alter the balance of an entire ecosystem!

The same is true of humanity. By taking more of what we want and less of what we need, we disrupt entire ecosystems, but if one person understands this connection and chooses something better for the greater common good, the universe will conspire to help us.

As our actions follow our thoughts, we forget to strike this delicate balance. We forget to be grateful and this is weakest link in the humanity chain. Our individual choices have consequences, and when our intentions are misaligned with all that is good, all that is abundant, our growing, global world suffers the cascading effects of conflict, at home and abroad.

Sometimes I forget that one person can make all the difference. I forget that I am borrowing from our planet; that my choices have ripple effects, so I try to be mindful, asking myself, “How I can give back?” Can I stop to help a stranger? Can I recycle something? Can I bring food to a sick friend? Can I choose more carefully the companies that I buy from?

We can only try our best to do the next right thing, but if every one person thinks they can do better, they can. If one person decides to think differently, their actions can alter an entire ecosystem – the world we live in.

Spring is in the air. It’s a time for renewal and rebirth. A time for hope, and revival, and rethinking. It’s springtime for the human spirit. Look to nature; we can learn much from the trees.

With Love and Love for Creation

Sibél Benarush, Creative Director 

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