N+1 Growth. Roots. Engagement.

One of our chief motives for embarking on the journey to revitalize Laney garden has always been precise and clear. It is about turning this precious piece of land into a space that will embrace our community with loving hands and hearts.A space that will feed their mind- body-soul through learning and living how agriculture, food, and our well being are all interconnected. However, although our own inner enfoldment is equally precious to us and works mutually  with the growth of the plants, and those whom this project touches, it was less clear how these worlds would dance..

Some of that enfoldment is now becoming clear via the learning and outreach that is happening within the inner cells of this growing body and ecosystem. Grey Loom, our mentor and garden confidant has proven to be a major inspiration to both of us. He represents and embodies the roots of what this garden will transform into. Not only is his knowledge a continual source of education and insight, his story of perseverance over many years of setbacks, and lack of support is a lesson for us, that our role in many ways is to continue to carry the torch that he lit many moons ago when he commenced the growth of the soil.

There is a practical lesson here,  the importance of rugged tenacity in the midst of suffering, but also the larger maxim that nature brings things into ripeness—on her own terms.

Another  enfoldment that happens is the simple and clear insights gifted in the silence of the garden. The garden is speaking constantly, it has its own language and the more one attunes to this language the easier it becomes to address the garden’s needs and share in its joys. Some of that sharing is became a swift reality with 3 major volunteer days that happened throughout  September that certainly address the garden’s needs and enhance its joys. We have been lucky in that we have had a tremendous amount of support both from the community at large, but also from individual plot holders who have revealed themselves to be more than we could have ever hoped for, both in terms of the garden and also as human beings.

The anticipation is building. We are now in the first major phase of outreach that goes beyond the major stakeholders and close alliances. It’s time to seek out and engage our fellow students directly and bring our enthusiasm and vibrancy to this project on a one on one authentic personal level. It’s exciting and a bit unnerving but we feel hopeful and optimistic. How could we not be? We have an amazing program director in Bidisha, an incredible mentor in Grey, and the Dalai Lama Fellows team/family and the many years of manifesting and preparing for a project like this to come to fruition in our lives.


Now we call on you to join us on this path to growth, rootedness, and engagement within in yourselves and your community.

By- Oscar Paul Medina


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