The story starts with stepping on a freshly fallen green acorn the other morning. The initial thought was “ ouch” and “crap, summer is ending”. Then with the acceptance and appreciation that we can never outdo nature, a lesson formed. The acorn in question was from a white oak tree that is approximately 25 years old. I have been privileged enough to watch this tree grow from its own self-sewn seed. Now strong enough to support a zip line with a 300 pound weight limit and tall enough to shade the deck, it understands time as the rhythm of nature. It also teaches the power of intention.
On an August morning that would heat up to 80+, the oak begins to drop its seeds as if it knows it will require the remaining three seasons to fulfill its potential. What starts with just a few oak nuts being dropped will soon cover the grass. But the odds are against the acorns. Each nut contains only one seed which requires 1,000 hours of dormancy. The potential for inhospitable weather is high – too wet or too dry; or another harsh Wisconsin winter and they won’t germinate. Additionally, due to squirrel and chipmunk all day dining, most of the seeds will never find dirt. But the tree instinctually recognizes that the more it drops, the better its chances. And the older trees have an advantage as they produce more acorns.
Isn’t the acorn a bit like the seeds of our intentions? They both take time – seasons even – to know if they will grow. In the mean time, we cannot guarantee the perfect climate for growth. Even when we put ample energy into creating a nutty idea 😉 things happen that are out of our control. Then the decision has to be made as to which seeds we should continue to nurture. Our minds are a bit like the squirrels; we get all excited at first, but intentions are misplaced like acorns. The squirrels get so busy hiding acorns that they can’t remember where most of them were stashed, and we get caught up in other distractions.
Masting is a phenomenon where every so often, different species of trees in a region drop an inexhaustible abundance of nuts in an effort to greatly improve the chances for growth. The years when oak trees mast are unmistakable; walking barefoot in the yard is not recommended. Viewed from the point of an individual tree, its ability to do this is remarkable. What is unexplainable is the synchronicity in which it happens. Different species of trees coordinate this prodigious release over large geographical areas as if they recognize the power of the collective conscious.
The end is optimistic for the White Oak. Every year, I find new baby trees in the yard. Somehow, the energy in one nut is strong enough to make it through it all. Or perhaps, it was a masting year and all the trees worked together for positive growth.
Like the oak tree, it is not too early to set intentions for next summer. And plant extras. Perhaps, following the example of Mother Nature, we can “mast” our intentions and infect the quantum field with positive change.
Happy Fall! Megan