To answer this question, let us embark on an imaginary journey. Immerse yourself, allowing no outside thought or distraction to enter.

Sit somewhere where you can be quiet and alone. Assume your meditation pose, breathe calmly and close your eyes.

Once you are settled into your breathing and have cleared your mind, imagine that you are a stone. This is not easy. A stone has no conscious awareness in the way that we do. It has no sense of time, place or order, no feelings, no thoughts, no desires, no will. It simply exists. You want for nothing. Cold, heat, light, dark, rain, storms and convulsions of earth are all the same to you. You are still, mute, inert, without sensation or motivation – and so you remain through the passing of days and nights, the turning of the seasons, the rolling years, centuries and millennia…

Now there arises from somewhere in your unseen depths a vague, wordless stirring, a push towards awareness. This bewildering force builds an irresistible momentum of increasing intensity, leading you, thrusting you towards the unknown.

Now suddenly you emerge from your stone-state. You are a plant. Your immediate sense is of liberation. You sense movement, growth, light, potential. You are free from the dire confines of the stone consciousness. Your roots reach down into the earth for nourishment, sustenance and stability. Meanwhile you reach upwards towards your radiant life-giver, the sun, source of light, energy, warmth and power. How you long only to merge with that all-nourishing, all-thrilling wondrous orb!

As a plant, you sense light and shade, cold and warmth, hidden magnetic and etheric forces unknown to human perception. You have a place in the world, and a role to play. Day by day you grow.

(continued …)