My neighbor likes hydrangeas. She has a lot of them in her yard. When I walk by, I admire them.
As I walked by this morning, I thought, "If I had a yard, maybe I would plant a lot of hydrangeas too."
I recalled that the color of the hydrangea depends on the pH of the soil. Would I put things in the soil to adjust the pH? No, that would be too much work.
I inadvertently have 6 house plants. I didn't particularly want them, but they came to me in various ways. Some I actually did buy, for particular reasons. Others were given to me. I don't want to be bothered with giving them plant food, re-potting them, whatever it is you are supposed to do with plants. I water them, and they have survived many years with watering as the only care I give them.
In my life it seems like I am trying to do a hundred things. I don't have time to worry about soil pH. I see interesting articles on the internet, but if they are long, I don't have time to read the whole thing. I have piles of books I want to read. I don't have time to read them all. And so, I give each thing as little attention as I can. I eat the foods that require that least effort to prepare. There are so many things that are important to me. If I rush, maybe I can attend to all of them.
That's not the way to tend to anything. Have you seen someone who truly tends to something? Someone who cares for a garden, cares for their children, cares for their marriage, cares for their elderly parent? Have you seen someone who pays attention to the details, who thinks about what they're doing?
As a druid, it's my responsibility to care for the earth and for my community.
I can buy local, organic food and carry it home in my re-usable bags. Get my brownie points for being environmentally correct, and get on with the hundred other things I want to do.
That's not what it means to be a steward of the earth. A steward of the earth tends the earth with care.
I can't do a hundred things. I need to choose. What do I personally want to do? I can't do everything that is needed to fix my community. Luckily, other people in my community are also contributing in their own ways. They each contribute in their own unique way. Which is my unique way? Instead of giving peripheral attention to a hundred things, doing a shoddy job on a hundred things, is there something to which I can make a commitment? Something I can really tend, something I can dedicate myself to trying to create and care for?