What is Co-Creation?
More than a Gardening Technique, Co-Creation is a Way of Life
Co-creation begins with the awareness of the spirit in all things, from plants, stones, clouds, and water, to all life forms. Every person, plant, animal, and element is an intelligent being, each with its own unique qualities and purpose.
The act of co-creation happens by connecting with the nature spirits, establishing permission, and trusting their guidance enough to act on it. When using this process of permission, the unique healing qualities are more aptly brought forth in the oils, essences and remedies produced.
The difference between oils and remedies created solely by human intention, versus those made in co-creation with the nature spirits is truly profound.
In his book, Coyote Medicine, Lewis Mehl-Madrona relays what the Lakota elders tell us about co-creation. They say that when humans take action and create from a space of honoring all of creation, allowing input and participation from the spirit world and all beings that will be affected, our creations are in harmony with the whole. They bring only positive results.
When humans try to shortcut the process and act from personal will, the resulting creation is out of harmony with the whole and creates only more problems.
Understanding the Benefits of Co-Creation
Patience is a Virtue
Co-creation seems like the long road. It takes extra time and patience, just like working with a committee that operates through group consensus. However, because it honors the cycles of life, all beings, and the great mystery, the resulting creations are harmonious, healing and life enhancing.
Over many years of living in co-creation, Michael and I have learned valuable lessons about honoring the cycles of life. For example, I have found that most plant species will experience vibrant growing conditions only once or twice over several years.
Manifesting a Vibrant Life Force
There will often be years where conditions are okay, but not excellent. I know that when I listen to the plant spirit’s guidance and honor the cycles, harvesting only in the years when conditions are prime, all the products and remedies produced will be of exquisite quality and filled with vibrant life force. In turn, the harmony, beauty, and balance that are created within our ecosystem and our lives are more valuable than we can know.
Co-creation comes to us only when we are open-minded enough to let go of our preconceptions about the world. When this happens, and we make an agreement to live in conscious harmony with all of life, this way of living changes us. It changes the way we think, and how we perceive the world. Our consciousness becomes connected to all life, and we feel this connection in both our minds and our bodies; thusly, our experience of the reality changes for the better.
An Example of Gardening in Co-Creation
Harvesting Stinging Nettles Without Getting Stung
Ask for Permission
In this photo, I am giving the nettles an offering of corn. I am taking a moment to connect with the plants, asking for permission to harvest, and asking if they have any needs that I can fulfill for them.
After a moment, I receive a subtle feeling of welcoming, as if the plants are offering their leaves back to me.
Proceed with Positive Intent
I gently and respectfully reach for a leaf, and pinch it off. The nettles will give without stinging, as long as I remain conscious and connected as I harvest.
If I stop paying attention, and begin to move too fast or harvest too many leaves, the familiar sting will come on to remind me that this plant demands respect!
Continue at the Right Time
At the end of summer, when I need to harvest a lot of nettles, I will harvest until I get another strongly welcoming surge of energy. Then I’ll use my dowsing pendulum to ask for and receive permission to harvest more nettles with a scissors or cutting tool. If I receive a positive answer, I will begin using a tool, still respectfully checking the energy before I cut each stem.
Listen to the Energy
Once the energy shifts, and the nettles no longer feel welcoming, I know that I must stop cutting and leave the rest of the plants. If I override or ignore this feeling, the nettles will remind me by stinging again.
During co-creation, I will always begin and end the harvesting by hand. This puts me in sync with the nettles plants, and helps me maintain our connection both spiritually and physically.