Wednesday, 29 May 2013

A Celebration of Flower Pots

This evening's Filling-up of Beakers was a special commemoration of the utility of flower pots.

When you think about it, flower pots are a spiritual metaphor in terracotta form. They are a veritable cradle of life - an artefact created solely to nurture plants into life. They "breathe" - not in the sense that they have lungs, but in the fact that their clay structure allows moisture to pass out. They protect the delicate roots of plants from the force of gravity, while allowing those roots to respond to gravity in the right way - to grow downwards into compost that is held safely in place.

There is a further spiritual truth to be drawn from plant pots. For when plants are too big for their pots, we neither throw away the plant, nor the pot - nothing is wasted. The plant is re-potted into a bigger pot. the pot is repurposed, as I believe the term is, to hold another, smaller plant. I'm not sure what spiritual truth this is - hopefully something about the way we can hold onto simple metaphors, but when we grow out of them we need more complex ones, while the simply metaphors are useful for others at an earlier stage in their faith journey. Certainly that's a better metaphor than the concept of "starter marriages" that Burton Dasset's ex-wife told me about earlier, when she was asking me whether I'd celebrate her fourth handfasting ceremony.

Still - plant pots. Nurturing, protecting, frost-resistant and attractive. A thing to celebrate. But, it has to be said, useless at a service of Filling-up of Beakers. The hole in the bottom makes them rubbish at holding water.

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