Seed of Prosperity

The pinecone dropped as I scrambled to catch it.

There I was, standing in desperation. I had gone to the one place I wasn't supposed to go for help--a tree.

During my time as a financial literacy teacher, I discovered an interesting truth. Money hurts. I had worked with people from every spectrum. I worked with homeless people, who were multi-millionaires, and just about everything in between. And although the external circumstances were drastically different, the core feelings of stress, fear, shame, and anxiety were consistent. How could something that was supposed to be a reward for our hard work cause so much suffering?

And as I stood holding the pinecone, the answer came. Money is the root of our disconnection with the Earth because it only works with humans. The phrase money doesn't grow on trees illustrates the point.

As humans, we have an innate understanding of trade. If I get a haircut from someone, I'm expected to pay the person in return. With nature, we don't have the same concept of trade. I can't pay a tree for its services, and bunnies have no use for cash. This disconnection has caused us to take resources from nature without an understanding of giving back.

While holding the pinecone, I realized that money does actually grow on trees because almost everything we buy and sell comes from nature. Whether it's the food we eat, the clothes we wear, or the homes we live in, these goods originally came from the Earth.

I now see trade as a new and more expansive concept. I can't pay a bunny with cash; I can contribute to Earth's wellbeing in many different ways. And in doing so begin to heal my relationship to money, resources, and interconnection with all of life. 

Plant Me Home
Story and artwork by Pi Luna
Created out of tiny pieces of paper cut out of recycled magazines.
18 x 24 inches

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