“Strong Winds Strong Roots: What Trees Teach Us About Life”

Originally posted in our October 2022 Top of Mind Newsletter.

To conclude this month’s Top of Mind newsletter, we visit an ecological experiment set in a desert called the biodome. In it are, seemingly, the perfect conditions for growing fruits, vegetables, and trees, and it was a place where humans could live happily for months at a time.

“When the trees grew to a certain height, they would topple over. It baffled scientists until they realized they forgot to include the natural element of wind. Trees need wind to blow against them because it causes their root systems to grow deeper, which supports the tree as it grows taller.”

Watch an old, strong tree in the wind the next time it storms. It sways and bends with the wind, remaining in flow with the energy around it. While the wind, at times, has the power to upend a tree, one that has gone through many storms will likely withstand many more, for its roots are deep and strong. The metaphor here is that to grow deeply, we cannot hide in a dome; we must live in the world around us.

How can we grow deep to stand tall?