How Does Your Garden Grow? (Editorial)

How Does Your Garden Grow?

When I was a child, my grandmother's garden was my first temple. It was a place of great comfort and solace for me, at times when I felt troubled or sad, and I would often feel revived by the closeness of growing things, and their small inhabitants. Of course, at a time when we were still singing God Save The Queen at school assembly, this kind of behaviour was frowned upon, and I was considered a very strange, fey child, for finding something spiritual in something so very ordinary. After all, that was what Church and God were for, not sulking at the bottom of the garden. 

Present day, and I still continue to find gardens as my temples - as a famed pagan, and a well-known advocate for the natural world, it's not considered that unusual anymore. And we're living at a time when plugging into a tree and listening to its playlist is a recommended pastime in a busy urban life. 

But beyond the experience of a garden, is its symbolic presence of a life - what we tend, what we cultivate, what we grow ourselves. Give anyone the chance to grow something from the dirt up, to their own satisfaction, and it all comes down to how much love, care and tenderness they give to it, whether they choose natural spontaneity or ordered ornamentation, or a combination of manicured lawns and natural bushland - but it's all a matter of personal attention and taste. 

How Does Your Garden Grow? is far from the first of such artworks following this theme - personal growth and development have long been a part of my work as both an artist and a mystic, and the garden is the perfect analogy of a natural world under order - where things have the power to grow, and there is the power to make choices and decisions to influence that growth. 
And by no means is this a concept limited to those fascinated by the natural world - every person in the world is faced with a set of circumstances, and the options that arise with them; at that time, they have to decide how they want their particular world to be shaped and developed, regardless of what they're facing at any given moment. If there is more than one option, they have a choice. 

And then another. And another. 

For myself, the garden will always represent human connection with the earth - the influence of order and design next to the natural patterns of genetics and physics, harmonising into a place of beauty, a wealth of love and commitment, and an inner world of peace and thriving life.