Dear Earth, I am greedy.On 27th October 2019 by Satya
When I was a child my mum would make pancakes as a special treat. One for me, one for my little brother. One for me, one for my little brother.
I hated the time it took for the pale creamy batter to take on golden patterns, be flipped, and appear on my plate with sharp lemon juice (with an occasional pip) and granulated sugar.
I hated even more that every other pancake wasn’t for me! I wanted ALL the pancakes.
I still carry this bottomless pancake greed. This morning I made myself thick fluffy pancakes – served with ripe banana slices and swimming in good maple syrup. As I ate them a part of me chanted ‘all mine! all mine!’ with deep satisfaction.
It is hard for most of us to share our treasure. I happily give away books or veg from the garden, but don’t ask for my last expensive truffle. I’m generous with my time until I’m full up with people, and then I’d begrudge you five minutes. How much I give to charity varies wildly depending not on my bank account but on how financially secure I’m feeling.
I try to be honest with myself about my greed.
It helps me to be kind to myself – greed is always an attempt at compensating for physical or emotional lack, usually in our distant past, or to bring security to parts of us that are wobbling.
It helps me to be realistic about what I can manage (offering half an hour to listen) and what I can’t (not setting a time boundary).
It helps me to play with renunciation, and to discover the sweet fruits of surrender.
More than anything, it reminds me how it is to be human, and that I should expect others to be greedy too. As I try to help you, dear Earth, I sometimes slide into oily smugness. I’m a non-flying vegan, aren’t I? I got arrested for your sake, didn’t I? What are YOU doing?
When I catch myself judging others, I return to taking the log out of my own eye before offering to take the splinter out of yours. I’ve got several lifetimes worth of pancake greed to deal with for starters. I did overdo it this morning a teensy bit (groan).
Darling Earth, thank you for pancakes. And thank you for other people to share them with. Maybe next time I’ll ask my little brother over…
Love, Satya <3