But ‘One must Cultivate one’s own garden.’
“And which of the favours of your Lord can you deny?” (Chapter 55.ayah 13. Holy Quran) were the first words that touched my heart as I watched this clip all because I counted my blessings. In the pursuit of happiness, success and ambition we have lost sight of the crying human inside us. Inside all of us lies a soul that has not been awakened to the greatness we can share with the rest of the world therefore, we don’t see how life tilts in our favour. Life, like a garden, left unattended falls into entropy but, when cared for by a passionate gardener, it blossoms to awaken the heart to the glory of beauty and the magnificence of the Creator because even the best gardener knows that he cannot rush the opening of the flower.
The passionate gardener cultivates his garden to embellish his love for nature and to beautify his space. In the space of self gratification and careful nurturing of the garden spiritual love is engendered which makes the gardener content because his garden is an escape from the maddening crowd. The story of Moin Khan is like the lonesome gardener who cultivated a garden that became a hope for humanity. Moin Khan epitomises gratitude which makes life tilt in his favour despite the odds that are stacked against him. It is this sense of gratitude that inspires the written word to encapsulate meaning of our actions to revive the soul’s attachment to the deeper innate realities of life. How much of life have you explored or questioned to find reasons for your purpose?
Voltaire, the French writer and activist wrote extensively on life, religion and politics making him a forerunner and critique of the Enlightenment. In his quest for exposing the fallacies of Christianity as a regime of power, the self acclaimed divine rights of kings, oppressive class divisions and overwhelming dogma that did not make sense to people who were disillusioned in the Church and State he influenced people to think very differently. In his widely acclaimed book of excellence, Candide, he makes the point through the themes of religion, warfare, suffering, oppression, mortality and love that people are not free from trials and tribulations regardless of social standing and assumed statuses therefore, people must and will learn to live with their conditions and must continue to strive, to seek, to explore and to dream too because, life is your best treasure. Voltaire wanted to show, through Candide that optimism in the main does not give you the necessary tilt to achieve life goals but its is hard work that will leverage your personal strengths. In Candide, Voltaire also points to our anxieties, sorrows, fears and problems that lie within us and not in the minds of other people or their philosophies or beliefs. Rather the conditions of the self can only be solved with a change of beliefs or a refinement of them. Life experience is that teacher that would diminish the naiveté and our beliefs are tested by personal conviction.
We are guided by beliefs and until our conviction is real, we will not find the reason to cultivate our own garden. Moin Khan gives me that conviction in my beliefs because he does not extend it to you as a lecture or a book. He merely lives it and inspires everyone around him. Look at his body language and demeanour to appreciate the fact that he believes in making a difference. The karma of this is the tilt of amazing people that take him as a role model. The lesson you learn is that you are your own teacher as well. What are you teaching yourself? Have you given a voice to your own thoughts, ambitions or dreams? These two questions are good to consider because if you cannot train yourself for greatness who is going to do it for you? Tough question. It is time to start having these personal conversations because self-growth is self-actualisation. In our condition with all faculties, health, opportunities and social trappings in place, we have not achieved much or have not grown our circle of influence or concern beyond the people in our immediate surrounds.
Candide meant that in order to live a meaningful life, we must decide our own fate and take responsibility for our actions instead of blaming something else. The garden itself represents life and the hard work that has to be done in order for successhttps://findanyanswer.com/what-is-the-message-of-candide
Life is surrounded by great expectations too mixed with with more failures and heartache. Moin Khan’s life is an everyday struggle of pain and his successes fill the bag of great expectations because he decided to surround his life with less complaints and more action within the realm of his abilities and influence. His influence grew as a result of the constant rebellion against disillusions, negative forces and despair thereby teaching us that growing your own garden means knowing that you cannot separate the thorns from the roses but, most definitely you can prune the rose bush and appreciate the aroma and mesmerising beauty.
“Come out here where roses have opened. Let soul and world meet.” Rumi
The soul yearns higher companionship and deeper meaning so begin by taking your soul on a tour of the things you want to do that would benefit others even if it is just to make someone smile. Let it be that the tour begins with counting your blessings. This exercise alone would fill a book and if you do it consciously, you will realise that you have a garden of roses better than most. The consciousness of the blessings you have will surely tilt life in your favour because you avoiding entropy. Entropy is a consequence of carelessness and hopelessness which leads to despair and being malcontent. Carelessness and hopelessness are pathways to the abyss of despondency. This can be avoided in a state of consciousness of what your purpose in life is or must be. Until you don’t tap into this consciousness, your days will tarry on until old age. Like Candide who in the later years of his life understood his purpose through an interaction with a sage realised the quintessence of life because behind that introspection were years filled with toil and trouble.
To navigate the toil and trouble here are some guiding ideas which would give you seedlings to start your garden.
- Strengthen your belief with conviction. For me, belief in Allah is paramount and it leverages my conviction.
- Begin reading a biography of extra-ordinary people and note their lives before greatness. Attempt to write your life too and see how you have greatness too that has meaning for you.
- The hobby or sport that you give so much time too, open yourself up to share it with someone so that they can embellish their life with a meaningful pastime.
- Begin writing. Like this website for me, it has become my garden where I plant seeds of hope, analysis and more not for comment but, for my own self worth. The comments will come on its time but it is you that must make the time.
Life must tilt in your favour because you are now not aimless with all that you do. Here is anecdote from book Irshad. Wisdom of the Sufi Master that will close our discussion and give us hope.
In the ancient times there lived a Shah of Iran called Feridun. He caught the glimpse of a beautiful woman walking in a garden and desired her more than what the rose bud desires a personal colour to bloom into. He summoned his courtiers and commanded that this woman be brought to him. His courtiers advised him that the woman is married and it will blemish his authority and give his enemies enough rope to malign him thus making him vulnerable to lose his realm. However, his image of her in the garden overwhelmed him and he summoned his courtiers to hatch a plan. The plan they said would be that you get her husband, who is a very skilled carpenter to fulfil an impossible task for the Shah. The Shah must inform him that failure will mean death making his wife a widow. The widow would be vulnerable and who best to marry her? The Shah Feridun summoned the carpenter who obliged with servitude was given the task of making twenty chests out of aloe wood, all crafted with intricate design and decoration. The twist in all of this was that the Shah told him that if it is not done in twelve hours, he would be killed. His head will be severed. The plan of Allah was something else. The carpenter went home burdened with anxiety like a mountain on an ant. He told his wife the whole deal and she consoled him on the nature of his character that he did not wrong anyone therefore, he will not be harmed. She reassured him that many things can happen in the time therefore, he should not worry.
The carpenter did nothing the whole night and waited like a lamb to the slaughter house and counted the hours to his execution. In the minutes to the end of the twelve hours he told his wife, “We shall meet again at Resurrection.” Suddenly urgent knocking interrupted the conversation and the carpenter felt his death was on the sword’s edge. At the sight of the Shah’s officers he trembled like and leaf and told them with what he could muster as a voice that he did not make the chests. One office with great command said: “Forget the chests, they are no longer needed! The Shah died in the early hours. You are requested to make him a coffin. Those were the Shah’s orders.”
Allah tilts life in your favour when you are honest and true! The carpenter cultivated a life wherein he wronged no one. Him and his wife were unaware of the malicious plot and it was their cultivation of good deeds that they harvested good relations with people which appealed to the mercy of Allah. Go out and begin cultivating your own garden where the seeds are honesty, care, compassion and kindness to creation. In the realm of the world beyond this transient existence is the cultivation of a higher garden for you designed by Allah. The garden is called Jannah (Paradise) which no eye has seen, no ear has heard its reality, no heart has felt its glory and no nose savoured its aroma. Establish a conviction in this belief because even the atheist cries out to Allah on the sinking ship. The believer is the one who cultivates his garden in this world for the meeting with Allah, the High the Great, who will give you a garden that you will dwell in forever. It is a worthy prize! Allah loves you and every test is a marker of how well you have weeded your garden of the seven deadly sins. Life will tilt in your favour! “And which of the favours of your Lord can you deny?” (Chapter 55.ayah 13. Holy Quran).