Trees and Tribes and Souls With New Eyes

“For a forester, this tree is ugly, because it is crooked, which means you can’t get very much money for the wood,” he said. “It really surprised me, walking through the forest, when people called a tree like this one beautiful. They said, ‘My life hasn’t always run in a straight line, either.’ And I began to see things with new eyes.”
— Peter Wohlleben

Yahweh, Yahweh, a God of tenderness and compassion, slow to anger, rich in kindness, and abounding in faithfulness. For the thousandth generation, Yahweh maintains…kindness, forgiving all our faults, transgressions, and sins. –Exodus 34:6-7 — Scripture used in a meditation by Richard Rohr.

They make room for each other,
courtesy, but more, care, so that the
sun may bathe the leaves, branches,
trunks, and the whole chemical re-
vitalization goes from the top to the
bottom to the roots and the roots
drink deeply of the moisture sending
it all the way back to the top. The
trees, the forester said, love each
other, give birth and nurture. There
was a crooked trunk and a forester
seeing only the commercial value said
it was no good, but tree huggers and
lovers just looked on in amazement at
how beautiful the tree was and the
tree’s mother and father, of course,
loved the tree thoroughly. Someone
looking on quipped that her life
wasn’t so straight either. The
Israelites never ran very straight
except to run into trouble, but the
steadfastly loving parent of the
tribe looked on, mercifully gave them
a little room so that the sun of
compassion could shine on them warming
them from the tops of their heads to
the bottom of their soles and souls.
It would seem that for trees and tribes
love is at the root and the top of it
all.

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