If your philosophy can’t grow corn, you need a new philosophy!
I learned this from Sun Bear, my teacher, co-author and spiritual partner. He would phrase it a little differently, “If your philosophy doesn’t grow corn, I don’t want to hear about it.” I’m giving philosophies a little more leeway by asking if they can grow corn. Maybe yours can, but you haven’t given it the opportunity to do so.
When I was in my early twenties and having a philosophical argument with a young man he told me, “You have no conception of the basis of Western philosophy.” I took this as a compliment. In fact, I did have a pretty good idea about the basis of Western philosophy, but I didn’t accept it as the truth this man did. When I studied philosophy in college and later in life it always seemed very heady to me. It was all about the intellect. All the classical major philosophers were men, and most of them seemed blind to what the world was like to those who lived from their heart and/or in harmony with nature.
Sun Bear challenged Western philosophy by asking whether it could grow corn. Now he obviously wasn’t asking if a theory could literally make a plant grow, although philosophers could and would argue this point. He was asking whether the philosophy could bring anything useful and tangible into existence.
Consider your philosophy of life, whether it is a personal one or one you have taken on from your education, upbringing or religion. Does your way of looking at the world grow corn? To answer this question, you can consider the following ones:
Does it help you live well, rationally, contentedly in your daily life?
Does it help you to react in a calm, problem-solving manner when you encounter the problems and difficulties that come to us all as we live our lives?
Does it allow you to set and achieve meaningful goals?
Does it bring you closer to the earth?
Does it help you understand and respect other people?
Does it help you to be in touch with your feelings?
Does it help you find your heart relations, your true family?
Does it help you to become a better person? a better parent? a better mate? a better child?
If you could answer “yes” to the questions above, you deserve congratulations. You have a philosophy that can grow corn. Go with it and bring forth your visions and dreams! If you answered “no” to more than one question, maybe you need to search out a vision seed that will lead you to a new way of viewing your life and the world.