Have you ever looked at a rose-like really looked at it and felt as if you have fallen into the natural authenticity of rose energy? Then you probably have awareness that a mother bush was planted in the ground then nurtured with actual rain and natural sunshine plus a generous amount of human care. It might also mean that you know firsthand about thorns as well as the usual fresh vibrant green leaves. This kind of rose has definitely not been plucked from a greenhouse where the plant was artificially nourished and/or genetically modified to appeal only visually and lacking fragrance, soul, or aura. The rose experience about which I inquire is when the flower emits a compelling natural rose smell and reflects natural color that changes as it matures. In this particular experience, time can seem timeless. During this type of appreciation, one understands that all life is sacred and deserves celebration. A word of caution! Staring deeply into the rose’s heart center where there is a natural and flawless unfolding of petals one can observe a perfect geometric pattern emerging. If you notice a quickening of breath or the acceleration of heartbeats, it is wise to just simply relax into recognition of the sacredness and ENJOY it!
Such natural responses may be the result of previous associations with roses as described at https://www.teleflora.com/meaning-of-flowers/rose. “Roses have long symbolized love and passion, the ancient Greeks and Romans associated roses with Aphrodite and Venus, goddesses of love. Used for hundreds of years to convey messages without words…Each color offers a distinct meaning: red, the lover’s rose, signifies enduring passion; white, humility and innocence; yellow, expressing friendship and joy; pink, gratitude, appreciation and admiration; orange, enthusiasm and desire; white lilac and purple roses represent enchantment and love at first sight..”. So much life and so much passion embedded into only one example of creation! Can we stand it?
Stopping to “smell the roses” is not just about flowers. Indeed, it serves as a metaphor that reminds us of how day to day “busyness” can deprive us of the preciousness and joy of being attuned with the sacredness of life. It may offer deeper reflections such as what might I have missed today? It can also offer opportunities for us to be more consciously aware in all our future tomorrows too.
The photo above elicits gratitude as I celebrate the joys and pleasures of personal relationships. The miniature rose bush that spawned these three pale pink blossoms was a gift from a friend during the summer of 2017. I planted it in our yard, nurtured it and subsequently felt much delight as it reciprocated by having prolific blooms all summer and, even now, into fall. The unique container was artisan created and given with gratefulness by spiritual friend upon completion of a joint project. When I started writing this, I could only smile upon reflection of how this specific arrangement enhanced a sweet afternoon of sharing coffee and dessert with long term friends. What joy to reflect on these delightful memories!
So now, I respectfully suggest that we can each choose to embrace the simple pleasures of sacredness by celebrating life every day. It could be by just getting a slight whiff of fragrance, a friendly wave or even a not-so-friendly gesture during stressful traffic tie ups. It’s all sacred if we choose to be fully present in the moment, observe our own egoic nature and appreciate our shared humanness. Would you care to join me in setting a clear intention to celebrate life by being truly present with whatever presents at any time? Roses fade. People come and go. Presence is an option in any moment. And, I believe, the celebration of Life is always appropriate.
Life is a celebration of creation itself. Joy is abundant and all around us if we have the eyes to see and the awareness to appreciate the sacred journey of exploring our world through the eyes of a child.
Wanda Gail Campbell
Wanda has served thirty plus years as a healthcare professional. Currently, she serves as a Minister of Peace ordained by The Beloved Community. In July, 2007 she completed her PhD in Philosophy focused on Intercultural Peacemaking. For her own spiritual nourishment, she enjoys reading both contemporary and ancient spiritual writings.