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Quote of the Day: Tomas Cowan

February 9th, 2014

There is no greater joy in life than to have a purpose; to know what your life means.

– Thomas Cowan MD from The Fourfold Path to Healing

2009 Edible Garden
Gardening has been a key component in helping me learn to live a more mindful life. A life which has a distinct meaning, at least for me. In this day and age, any hobby we can cultivate that helps us slow down and consider what our lives mean is very valuable. Gardening is that hobby for me, while I garden, I think.

Do you have a hobby that helps you slow down?

8 Comments to “Quote of the Day: Tomas Cowan”
  1. bangchik and kakdah on February 9, 2014 at 6:43 am

    Gardening will keep our minds alert, and teaches us what action_reaction means….

    Reply to bangchik and kakdah's comment

  2. Marina C on February 9, 2014 at 8:23 am

    So true!
    Gardening, knitting, quilting and cooking, including putting up for the winter are the hobbies that define my life. There is no rushing any of these, they have a pace of their own.
    I love to spend time on my own, and I also love to give to those I care about.
    Those activities allow me at the same time to nurture my need to work on my own, freedom to answer to myself, and to share the results and that is the sociable aspect of my hobbies.
    I have not previously thought them to be my purpose, but that is a good thought. They certainlly define who I am to those around me.
    Off to make bread!

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  3. Nebraska Dave on February 9, 2014 at 8:31 am

    Susy, physical labor has always inspired my thoughts to go places that just don’t happen when in conversations with people or mesmerized by the TV. Most times when physical labor is involved, it’s an alone with my thoughts time. Even mowing the lawn is really alone time and the sound of the lawn mower drowns out the distractions. My Terra Nova Garden is the best place ever for contemplating my purpose in life. I believe that everyone has a God given purpose in life and furnishes the talents to make it happen. I’ve discovered that life can be so much more if that passion is found and cultivated. It’s difficult to find anyone these days that love what they do to earn income. Oh, they love payday but they just hate to go to work. It’s a terrible way to spend a life time. I just wish that young people would take the time to find that purpose and passion early in life. The discovered path in life might not make them rich or famous but it dissolve much of stress of life and bring in much more happiness and satisfaction.

    I hope you are enjoying the Olympics. I haven’t watch any of them yet. Maybe when they get to the hockey or the bobsleds, I’ll watch.

    Have a great pre garden Maine day.

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  4. daisy on February 9, 2014 at 9:08 am

    I agree with Marina about passions having no time frame. They create their own space. Gardening, knitting, doing jigsaw puzzles and writing are ways I nurture my soul and relish alone time. It centers me, so that I can do what I need to do in the rest of my life. I’m blessed to have time to pursue these things.

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    • Marina C on February 9, 2014 at 9:38 am

      Thanks, Daisy, for reminding me about jigsaw puzzles. They are like candy, a treat, and I love to do them.
      Nebraska Dave is spot on, I myself had a career for work, and now I get to do what I love to do.
      So far, of our two kids, one has managed to join work and passion: she is almost a vet (3rd year), the other, still in college.
      I have no regrets, but in another round on life, I would worry less about financial security first, no debt and all that is great, though, and I would find a way to combine my passions and earning a living.
      Seems like Suzy and Brian are doing both, and way earlier in life than we did.

      Reply to Marina C's comment

  5. DebbieB on February 9, 2014 at 10:09 am

    I feel the same way about spinning and weaving, and to a lesser extent, knitting. With the repetitive soothing movements and the tactile and visual stimulation of the yarn and fiber, my eyes and hands are engaged, yet my mind is free to wander and meditate and chew on issues and interesting ideas.

    I agree about the jigsaw puzzles, though I can’t keep them out anymore with the cats – they love scratching pieces out and scattering them everywhere.

    Lovely photos as usual, Susy!

    Reply to DebbieB's comment

  6. Melissa on February 10, 2014 at 9:37 am

    Gardening is definitely my thinking time! I’ve been seeding hundreds of seeds recently for flowers this year– been doing a lot of thinking time! It’s such a great planning time or even just a nice time to relax my mind and think creatively!

    Reply to Melissa's comment

  7. Reid on February 11, 2014 at 12:09 pm

    Gardening for me is a consuming passion. It is so much so now that I’m exploring getting my masters in horticulture. I want to get connected with other like minded people. I am a teacher right now, so having the summers off is huge in getting me time to pursue my passion. I started all three of my kids young, and they love getting their hands dirty. They love to eat vegetables.

    Fishing is another passion that helps me think. Just being out on the water early in the morning seeing the mist off the water. My Rapala hits the water…the ripples go out…stillness…then BAM! A largemouth bass attacks the lure…I reel it in, take it off the hook, and ease it back in the water. He disappears to be caught another day.

    Or the sun on my face feeling the throb of the spinner bait in my wrist, while contemplating what to plant in my fall garden.

    A fall whitecap day with a little mist on my face reminding me that winter is near, and I have to shred up those leaves and give the worms something to eat all winter. And Oh…I have to stop at the java joint to pick up those spent grounds to mix in the shredded leaves. I envision the rich detritus smell as I put my nose to it in the spring, indicating the worms and soil critters have done their job.

    And then in February sitting frozen on that same body of water, waiting for my bobber to disappear down the 8” diameter hole, my thoughts turn
    to what heirloom tomatoes to plant. Will I have room for those 3 new squash I want to try? What should I put in the bed I left fallow last year?

    If I don’t catch fish, I catch a vision of the earth’s goodness on my plate.

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This is a daily journal of my efforts to cultivate a more simple life, through local eating, gardening and so many other things. We used to live in a small suburban neighborhood Ohio but moved to 153 acres in Liberty, Maine in 2012.

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