Thursday, January 16, 2014

How to Build a Garden

Windblown (2011)
Shenn


When one decides to build a garden or special space for oneself, one's purpose is to create a space that gives one pleasure. First, one chooses a place to build their garden or special space and builds a barrier around it to separate it from the nongarden surrounding it. Next, the gardner or special space seeker selects those elements from nature or from his or her travels, for example, elements that are pleasing, such as fragrant flowers, Picasso sketches, or Chagall paintings. The gardner or special space seeker then arranges these elements within the garden or special space according to a design that is in harmony with the parameters of the space selected and that allow him or her to fully appreciate each element to the fullest. Essentially, a garden or special space is a special space full of lovely curiosities from nature (including those created from human nature) arranged in a pleasing or harmonious way.

After creating one's garden or special space, the gardner or special space creator must maintain the space with utmost vigilance and care. He or she has to discourage the growth of plants that are not harmonious to preserving the beauty he or she has created. Items that are not harmonious with how he or she wishes to feel in this space are not included so as to preserve his or her garden or special space as he or she wishes it to be. 

To preserve this space as the gardner or special space seeker wishes it to be for any significant amount of time, the gardner or special space seeker must actively work in harmony with the space as if that space were a natural occurrence in nature. For nature, when left to her own will, does not concern herself with human nature and will grow over rose or flower beds without concern for them staying put. It is nature's job to grow and when left undirected, will grow in the direction that dictates its trajectory. Wind, temperature, humidity, terrain, and other factors dictate how and in which directions nature progresses. Human beings act as similar agents of change, redirecting flowers to remain put by trimming and pruning them in accordance with their own aesthetic or natural preferences. Just as dust and other elements affect a special space, humans address these agents of change by introducing wood polishes, ionizers, or special lighting so as to preserve the original integrity of a painting or piece of antiquity.

In this respect, gardens and special spaces are temporally crafted spaces. Existing as long as the gardner or special space seeker attends them. While one could say that these spaces would fall into disarray if left unattended, it is of no real consequence for mother nature herself too ceases to exist without agents of change (wind, temperature, humidity, human beings, animals, and so forth). For the time that the gardner or special space seeker has the space to the time that it no longer exists exists moments whereby the garden or space might be appreciated. This appreciation for a temporally crafted garden or special space is not unlike the appreciation one might feel for life. 

Creating gardens and special spaces is not about imposing order, it is about participating in temporal moments of pleasure that enhance how we perceive the gardens and special spaces we create for ourselves. There are no harsh realities of life outside the barriers of our gardens and special spaces, only different realities with different agents of change. While some gardens or spaces, depending on their spacetime location may require more energy or protection from unharmonious elements, their presence in our experience of living is as natural as mother nature herself for we are all elements of change be us human, animal, perceptible natural movements, forces, energy, or otherwise. How we arrange ourselves, how we build our gardens or special spaces, has as much to do with our intentions, form, and function as it does with our resources, imagination, place in the universe, and heartfelt desire for living well. 



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