One of the most magical things about cannabis plants is their crystals. They glisten and shine like little diamonds, like snowflakes, like lights on a Christmas tree. Cannabis plants are decorated with their own Christmas lights provided by mother nature. It is a beautiful thing to behold.
Winter is coming again. The nights grow longer and the holidays are near. I always thought myself lucky to be born one week before Christmas Day. That time of year had layers of celebration for me as a child. I definitely fall into the category of a spoiled millennial. Although I consider myself to be in the first wave of millennials for whom the ground is more solid.
Personally my life has been anything but ideal. To say my life is not what I expected is an understatement. But in so many ways it is better than what I expected too. It falls into the category of,“You can’t always get what you want, but sometimes you get what you need.” Our generation cares a lot about what we want and when it comes to what we need we aren’t quite as intrigued.
Yet in my life it is when I embraced circumstances that I didn’t think I “wanted” that I ended up gaining more than I ever expected. On the contrary when I’ve gotten things I’ve wanted in life I’m never left satisfied. As sure as you are that your thirst will be quenched once you achieve some goal or obtain some possession, it’s never quite enough, the pull of wanting catches you, and you are again lost in a downward spiral of craving. Never is this maddening cycle more evident than around the holidays.
We are inundated with decorations and commercials, overindulgence and excess. Encouraged to want more, to eat more, to drink more. This is a short version of what we refer to as “the holidays”. Ultimately we end up needing a holiday from the holidays. There is a lot of emphasis on consuming and receiving. Frequent questions in the month of December fall along the lines of, “What do you want for Chistmas?” “Hey what did you get for Christmas?”
What can we get and how much can we consume pretty much sums up the holiday season. This is our chosen method for celebrating the end of our years on this often troubling planet. We kiss the year goodbye by indulging in our worst habits. It seems to be a time of year when it is more evident than ever that maybe our way of life is missing the mark when it comes to true joy and happiness.
Despite my joy as a child in receiving gifts and eating lavishly, as an adult I’ve been a victim of the holiday blues. Year after year I struggle to walk away from Christmas feeling a real sense of joy. And each year I ask what went wrong? I wonder how I spent another Christmas day stuck in disappointment. Maybe it’s because I have yet to realize and accept the fact that Christmas is not about my happiness, its about other people’s happiness. It’s not about what gift I did or didn’t get, it’s about what I give to others and not just on Christmas day but everyday.
It seems that many of us have neglected the spirit of giving. What if the emphasis was truly on what we can do for someone else? A celebration of love to end the year could be giving back to others. This may sound cliche or you may say “wait that’s what Christmas is already about.” But it seems rare that we truly give to others without an expectation of something in return. Giving back isn’t buying them socks, perfume, gadgets, slippers or toys but by giving them you, your undying love and presence, your ear, your words, your truth, your helping hand, your advice, your acceptance, your admiration. The years go by so fast, faster all the time. As we complete one after another, each presenting it’s new challenges, the hope is that we come closer to our true selves, closer to our heart centers. Closer to a place of giving rather than receiving and giving without any expectation that it will be returned. That is unconditional love and that’s what Christmas is about.
An iconic image of the Christmas season is of course the tradition of decorating a Christmas tree. We all bring a tree in our home for a month and allow it to grace our living rooms and peacefully watch over our holiday festivities. For me, one of the best images of the heart center and unconditional love is a tree. Trees have a lot to teach us about selflessness. For trees life is not about wanting more and more or me, me, me. Life for trees is about giving. They have no ego, they live a life of unity, interconnectedness and sacrifice.
Of course one of the most important trees in my life is cannabis. The cannabis plant exemplifies the spirit of giving more than any plant. The ways in which this plant gives back are numerous. One single plant may reach hundreds of people. The power, sacrifice and ability of these plants to bring healing energy to human beings is unprecedented. Its merits are becoming an undeniable fact to the majority of the population. With all the division in this country this year one thing is clear, cannabis is turning the map green. This magical plant offers so many people with the opportunity for healing, for softening for understanding and connecting. Fortunately, it is becoming accessible to millions of people across the country especially because it appears now we may need it’s guidance more than ever.
We can’t always get what we want, sometimes your family can’t afford the newest iPhone or Beats headphones. But sometimes we get what we need and what we need now in our country is healing, understanding and above all unconditional love. Unconditional love can only flow form our heart centers. Christmas trees and cannabis silently remind us to stay centered and love unconditionally. That is the greatest gift you can give to those around you.
Here I am a Christmas baby who has always disappointed by the holidays. The holidays tend to remind me of all I’ve lost and now at 30 years old with a son of my own, the time has come to not focus on me, me, me and all I’ve suffered. The time has come to focus on the future, on all I’ve gained, on all I have to give, all that I want to give back to the world, to my country, to my community, to my family, to my son.
Cannabis reminds me “it’s not about you, it’s about giving love and service to the people that surround you and the planet you live on.” The plants whisper, “everything will be ok, the undying thread of love is ever present.” They ease my fears. “Be merry” they sing for there is so much to be grateful for, so much ahead of us that will shock and inspire us. I’m so glad they are along for the ride. May we all have a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.
By Chanel Wing/THC Magazine December 2016