Inside Ivy will change the way you look at plants and the world forever! It may even change the way you look at yourself. The “Ivy” in question is a Philodendron or silver-leafed Arrow Head plant. We bought it in the mid 1970’s to hang from the ceiling next to the kitchen table in the small dining room of our two-story townhouse on McAllister Street in San Francisco. When the vines grew long enough to reach the floor, we found ourselves having to sweep them to the or risk stepping on them to sit at the back of the table. We considered this a small price to pay because the plant looked so beautiful between the two corner windows near the front door. But, when the vines began to pile up on the floor and it was hard not to step on them, we knew it was time to find Ivy a new home.
On a dark and dreary Saturday morning in the middle of winter the moment of truth finally arrived. Our kids, Crystal and Evan, and my wife, Sandra, and I were just finishing breakfast when Sandra said she wanted to clean the dining room windows. To make it easier, I took the ivy plant down and set it in the middle of the kitchen table. The vines were so long they not only trailed across the table and down to the floor, they stretched across the floor about four feet. To help Sandra get to the windows without stepping over them, I created a path between them and the wall. As I looked down at them , I couldn’t help but be amazed at how beautiful they were. This is it, I thought; it’s time to find Ivy a new and safer home.
Without conscious intent, my eyes followed the full length of the plant from the pot on the table, down to the floor and to the end of the vines, where they stopped at the bottom of the stairs to the second floor. In a “Eureka” moment, I knew the stairwell would make the perfect home for Ivy. It would give her room to grow, and there was a skylight directly above the stairs!
Excited, I climbed several stairs to explore this idea further. Through my mind’s eye, I could see the plant’s green and white leaves against the white background of the wall, as they cascaded down the stairwell wall to the rail and, eventually, down the rail to the floor in the dining room. In my mind, I watched them them grow all the way down the handrail, and yes, even down to the floor below.
Oh well, I thought, we’ll cross that bridge when we come to it. Right now there’s only one question left: will Ivy fit safely on the ledge at the top of the stairwell? Grabbing a tape measure, I hurried upstairs to see. Wow, talk about magic, the ledge was exactly the same width as the base of the plant pot, six inches! Clearly, the stairwell under the skylight was the perfect home for Ivy!
After Ivy’s big move, I developed a new and interesting habit. Every time I climbed the stairs to go to bed at night, I paused to admire the plant’s beautiful leaves as they cascaded down the wall. In the hallway above the stairs, I’d rest my elbows on the ledge and lower my face close enough to feel its aura (energy field) with my own. Telepathically, I’d say, Hi, how are you tonight? Then I’d wait for a surge of energy to come back in return. When it did, I accepted it as the plant’s way of saying “Hello.” After basking in the glow of our energy for a few seconds, I finished up with, Well, good night, I’ve got to go to bed now. See you in the morning!
I performed this ritual every night for several months, until one night something different happened. This time, when I leaned over to say hello, I noticed Ivy’s energy field was much stronger than usual. After my usual greeting, I blissfully bathed in the more intense tingly feeling, while at the same time wondering why it was so strong. With no recognizable answer to my question, I shrugged and prepared to say goodnight. Suddenly, it was if a barrier let go and my consciousness poured from my body* and down into the plant, like milk from a pitcher. More than just falling, it felt like I was being drawn into the plant. When the falling sensation stopped, I sat up to assess my situation. Where was I? How did I get so small? Astounded, I could see I was in the middle of a tiny rootlet in the ivy plant, a small hair-like structure that grew off one of the main roots.
* Is this another example of an out-of-body experience? While all of my attention seemed to be inside the plant, I assumed a tiny bit of it must still be inside my body. Otherwise, how could my elbows on each side of the plant and my legs standing on the floor continue to hold my body up? What do we know that we don’t know we know, and what can we do that we don’t know we can do?
What was even more astounding, I realized that we were sharing our thoughts and feelings directly so there was no need for language. When I wondered something about the plant, I saw and lived out the answer. For example, when I wondered where I was, I saw myself inside a small rootlet of the plant.
When I wanted to explore other aspects of the plant, all I had to do was think about what I wanted to do and there I was. Using this ability, I rose to the surface of the soil and peeked over the edge of the pot and down the stairwell to see the vines trailing down the wall. Observing the plant in its entirety, I perceived it as a gigantic living, interactive structure. It was a vast community of souls, each one connected with the other, yet separate.
The root system and the leafy vines above the soil worked together as one. When I wondered what Ivy’s purpose was, I received the following answer, “We are here to express beauty and grace in the world.” Wow, isn’t that amazing and so true, I thought? Don’t most plants express beauty and grace in the world, as well as other values? How often do we stand transfixed by the beauty of a flower or the colors of a leaf? How often do we feel the need to stop and smell the roses?
I then looked over the edge of the pot facing the upstairs hallway to watch my wife and children prepare for bed. They could see me doing my usual thing with the plant but what they didn’t know was that I was a tiny point of consciousness peeking back at them from the plant pot.
For a moment, I considered returning to my body but the thought paled in comparison to the excitement of exploring my new surroundings. It became clear to me that the plant was as aware of us as we were of it. Suddenly, the thought struck me, as “care givers” of the plant, we were literally extensions of it. When we remove it from the Mother Earth and bring it into our homes, we are committing ourselves to a great responsibility. In a way, it’s like being a parent. Whether it’s a child, a plant, or an animal, when we willingly enter into a relationship, ideally, it is up to us to fulfill our side of the bargain and, if we don’t, it’s up to us to learn from it so we can do better the next time. Using the example of a plant like Ivy, any failure on our part to provide her with food and water could result in great suffering and even her death. unspoken obligation. When others are fully dependent on us for survival and we fail to hold up our end of the bargain, can fear and possibly resentment be hiding behind our relationship?
Disturbed by the seriousness nature of these thoughts, I couldn’t help but recall past experiences when my understanding and care of plants was far less than ideal. Uncomfortable with my feelings of guilt and irresponsibility, my mind sought relief by focusing my attention in a new direction. Using the power of imagination and the basic matter of the rootlet, I began to create the control console of a highly advanced star ship. It had a large round screen that contained images of several star systems along with control symbols above. Excited with my new Star Ship and role as Captain, I created a handsome white uniform to complete the picture.
Even though the Star Ship was a creation of my unfettered imagination, I knew I could fly it anywhere throughout time and space. I also knew I had the power to deal with whatever obstacles were encountered or created along the way. Quite a fantasy, huh? With the push of a button, the control panel came to life. At the same time, I began to understand, or remember, how to use its amazing technology. Suddenly, my imagination filled with thoughts and images of far-off places and wild adventures to be experienced. Deciding that my featureless white uniform was just too plain for a Star Ship Captain, or dare I say, Master of the Universe, I looked down to see fancy gold buttons appear and disappear on my uniform until they looked just right. Then, what’s a beautiful uniform without epaulets and gold braid? Looking down at my left shoulder, there it was, an ornate gold braid with tassels.
Suddenly, the memory of my rude departure came to mind. Ashamed, I returned to the reality of my new-found friend inside Ivy. As fit his character, he was still there, as if he knew I would return.
Somehow, knowing that I was loved and understood, I began to wonder about the nature of my friends reality, and immediately, I began to experience it! As if becoming one with the consciousness and intent of the rootlet, I began to slowly and relentlessly move aside grains of sand as we grew in search of food and moisture to feed the plant. Not only did we look for pockets of the most important nutrients, using both logic and intuition, we looked for the most efficient pathway to reach them.
Growing impatient with this slow pace of learning, I switched to my intuitive sense to speed things up. Like looking at a magic video of the rootlet’s life experience, I could review its growth history from past to future, as fast or as slow as I wanted. I experienced varying levels of light and dark as night turned into day and back again, and as the height and depth of our growing varied. The rootlet exercised awareness and intent similar to our own.
As we worked together, I became acutely aware of its normal emotional state. From within its being, I could feel the profound sense of love, honesty, and joy it exuded as it went about fulfilling its unique role in the life of the plant. It was consciously aware that its being was unique and important to that life. It didn’t question its value or role, and it wasted no time comparing itself to others. It simply rejoiced in its own being, the being of the plant, and all life.
Astounded by the awareness and intelligence of this “speaker” for the plant, I stopped to review our relationship to see how it could have resulted in this amazing breakthrough. What allowed the barriers between us to fall so we could share our unique, individualized energy? Was the love we felt for each other, plant and man, so strong it enabled us to drop the pretense of separation required for biological expression? As I pondered this question, I knew the answer is yes and I felt blessed beyond compare!
Before leaving the plant and my host, I couldn’t help but feel a sense of awe. My host was so open, loving, and wise, it was hard to believe. Who knew? Easily slipping back into my human body, it was my turn to prepare for bed.
“When at last I took the time to look into the heart of a flower it opened up a whole new world – a world where every country walk would be an adventure, where every garden would become an enchanted one.” ~ Princess Grace of Monaco
© Copyright 1998, Roger “Pete” Peterson
For more on plant consciousness, read the The Secret Life of Plants, a 1973 book, written by Peter Tompkins and Christopher Bird.
Roger Peterson (Pete) – https://realtalkworld.com
“We are not human beings having a spiritual experience. We are spiritual beings having (creating) a human experience.” – Pierre Teilhard de Chardin
“How you define yourself and the world around you, forms your intent, which, in turn, forms your reality.” – Seth
In other words, we create reality from what we choose to think and feel about ourselves and All That Is.
If we don’t consciously choose our beliefs, we unconsciously absorb them from our surroundings.
If our beliefs, attitudes, values and expectations create reality, can we afford not to question them?
Start your own Story Room with ideas from The LifeSong Store!
Affirm the ideas that work best and make you happiest!
I think I read about this guy in my mid-20s: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cleve_Backster
Never did get his book.