Bite sized wisdom: accepting metamorphosis

The term metamorphosis is defined by dictionary.com as “a profound change in form from one stage to the next in the life history of an organism, as from the caterpillar to the pupa and from the pupa to the adult butterfly”. 

If you are not familiar with the metamorphosis of a caterpillar to a butterfly then let me give you a crash course. A butterfly lays one egg, and since it’s very picky as to what it eats, it selects a plant that it knows the offspring will like.

saynotofoodwaste.metamorphosis.butterfly.change.accept.life.beauty.transform.become.love.1The caterpillar is born in a skin that is too small for it, so as it grows the new skin forms on the inside and the older skin sheds off. After eating and crawling for most of its life the caterpillar reaches a point of adulthood where somehow it senses the need to transform. At that point  the definition of life it grew to accept begins to change.

To bring on this change the caterpillar stops moving and finds a safe shelter in its chrysalis. There the caterpillar slowly transforms its body, grows wings, develops antennas and a slew of other things. This process takes about 10 to 14 days, and varies by species.

When the process is done the caterpillar transforms into a butterfly and emerges into the same world as a changed being. While life around may seem the same, the butterfly is not, and its past reality is replaced by a new one. Yet, even in this time, the butterfly is not done transforming. It needs to dry off its wings and build up flight muscles before it can fly.

Interestingly, if you ask a caterpillar about the future it imagines for itself it won’t be able to tell you that one day it will fly. And the buttery doesn’t remember its past to tell you where it came from, yet its the same organism.

saynotofoodwaste.metamorphosis.butterfly.change.accept.life.beauty.transform.become.love.3Our lives are just like the caterpillar’s. We can’t predict the future and so we don’t know what treasures await us. We know that change is natural, but yet we fight it. And if we keep fighting off change then how will we ever transform into what we were born to become?

As another year comes closer to its end, we as creatures have no clue of what 2016 has in store, and truth be told, there is no need for guessing either. Our only task is to accept that whatever we define as our ‘life’ for the time being is subject to change. And we simply need to give ourselves the space and time to realize and transform into a new version of ourselves.

Day by day I’m learning to not fight the future but accept it as it comes.

So I’m always growing, always changing.

Happy transformation friends!
Hokuma

 

 

Bite sized wisdom: from roots to fruits

Every seed holds undiscovered potential. It is a chance at new beginnings and new life.

In order for this possibility to unfold we first need to place the seed in soil – a dark matter that we know little about.

Aside from the fact that we walk on land, we have no idea what minerals and living organisms hide beneath our feet. And once we plant a seed all we can do is water it without knowing the changes manifesting inches below.

saynotofoodwaste.bitesizedwisdom.plants.dreams.soil.water.faith.hope.grow.belief.patience.love1So without peeking at what we sow, we keep praying that something will grow. We focus our attention on taking care of the seed. We shower it with water, give it love and hope that our efforts lead to something rewarding. We imagine that in time we will see the fruits of our labor and even get to taste them.

This process is true for all seeds, no matter how tall or short the plant grows, and whether or not it flowers once or bares many yields.

In our daily lives we forget that our own relationships, projects and dreams follow a similar path. Once an idea is planted in the dark matter of our minds we invest energy and time into its development. Guided by blind faith we agonize over our goals without any guarantee that they will come true.

Those who have patience and strong belief keep trying and toiling over their seeds and ideas for as long as it takes until results start appearing. Unfortunately, the current lifestyle values quick results, immediate reactions and satisfactions, and that is just not natural. For anything meaningful to grow it must be given time and love. It takes hard work before the bounty can be harvested and enjoyed.

Our daily lives take us away from our plants. Sitting behind a desk, maintaining our friendships over social media and telephone screens, and craving immediate results, we forget and then get jaded about the ways of our world.

In my own life, I strive to go back to basics. I make conscious efforts to be good to myself and to others. And most importantly, when I find something that I truly love and want to realize I remind myself that all good things take time. That for any seed to grow it must first develop roots which expand at their own pace, away from my sight, and that all I can do is to keep trying, to keep caring for the idea until it shows me some signs – good or bad.

Of course, in bad moments the seeds we plant never break open their shells and the soil lacks nutrients for growth. In those situations we must find new ground and new seeds to plant. But only time can reveal our future. The only power we have is deciding the type of seeds we choose to plant and making a conscious effort to care for them in the face of the unknown.

Let’s remember that it takes roots to grow fruits and we must be patient.

Let’s start planting!
Hokuma

Bite sized wisdom: go down to go up

To grow we must challenge ourselves.

saynotofoodwaste.grow.tree.up.down.sustainable.learn.wisdom.nature.2Take plants for instance, in order for them to reach more sunlight they must go deeper into the ground (the root goes down and the stem shoots up).

What about animals? The different species we have of same family of mammals is due to environmental challenges that each group adapted to. Even fruits and vegetables have different varieties.

Nature wouldn’t create options if one was enough to address all challenges and fit all needs.

As humans we too must adapt to challenges. This is not done by running away, it’s done by facing the problem, studying it fully and finding small solutions until we overcome our obstacles. Here are three TED talks that provide solutions to common challenges of life.

  1. Face your problem.

Many times we are afraid to make mistakes. This is because we don’t like accepting that we’re not perfect. Sometimes these thought processes lead us astray and not being able to control what comes our way scares us. Yet, if we avoid problems and lead comfortable lives we will never develop. Learning to accept mistakes, face fears and turn problems into lessons will help us grow upwards, just like plants.

2. Study the challenge. 

Once the problem is isolated we try to get rid of it as fast as possible. But like weeds that grow stronger roots, stomping out problems on the surface won’t take them away. Instead, we should look deeper and resolve them from there. For many of us, learning to cook and eat mindfully in our busy lives doesn’t leave us much time to address these issues. One physical symptom of this is weight gain. To address this many turn to extreme diets and then gain the weight right back, but they don’t learn to control their cravings.

3. Set your mind to look for solutions. 

To accomplish anything we must have the right attitude and really want it. Willpower can get us moving, but it is our passion and emotion that keeps us invested even in the face of challenges. These are the things that make life worthwhile, because we know that attaining the goal will be for our own benefit. Being invested in wanting to change means you’re more likely to do it. And even if things don’t go your way, you won’t give up easily because you will know that development requires trial and error. But one thing you can be sure of is: once you do find the path to change it will definitely be a sustainable and a long-lasting one.

In a life that keeps changing we must keep growing. But, before we can run we must walk, and sometimes before we can walk we must begin by crawling, either way – keep going forward. To see more inspiring videos on growth check out this playlist on becoming “A better you“.

After all, even the tall tree under the sky was once a small seed buried in soil.

Happy growing, friends!
– Hokuma