“The Rabbit and the Garden”
(from Mark Nepo, The Book of Awakening, p. 280)
In the movie, Phenomenon, John Travolta’s character has done everything he can think of to keep this pesky rabbit out of his garden. He’s even put in fencing that goes three feet underground, and still everything he plants is nibbled through.
Suddenly one night he wakes and realizes he’s been going about this all wrong. In the moonlight, he quietly goes to his garden and opens the gate, then sits on his porch and waits.
To his surprise, as he begins to fall asleep, the rabbit scurries out the gate. While he’d been trying to keep it out, the rabbit was trapped in his garden, and he was inadvertently keeping it in.
How often do we barricade and fence up our lives against hurt and loss, thinking we’re keeping the painful things out, when they’re already trapped inside us eating at our roots, and what we really need to do is to open the gate and let them out?
Close your eyes and open the gate to your heart and wait. Breathe and wait.
Breathe slowly and give the rabbit a chance to leave your garden.