There is a tree in a forest of trees, not far from where you are. I would like to say that it was a special tree, but it is only special in the way that all trees are special, until one spring day. On a branch about halfway up the tree, a small bud formed, and over the next few days developed into a leaf. Nothing special about that, or was there? This leaf was different; it was a leaf with a mission.
The leaf grew stronger, a glossy rich green, it faced upward toward the sun, absorbing the life giving rays. By day it photosynthesized, utilizing the sun’s rays to feed the sap that flowed through its host, and by night, absorbed the carbon dioxide and pollution from the atmosphere, to produce the essential oxygen for other life forms. You may be wondering why this particular leaf was special. It was indistinguishable from all the others and from a distance, merged into all the rest of the vegetation. But just sometimes, even the most insignificant of life forms can add something special in our lives.
Unnoticed by those who came to visit the forest, pause beneath the tree to sit awhile and enjoy the shade, to perhaps feel the vibrant life force emanating from its sturdy trunk, the leaf is fulfilling just one of the prescribed functions of its existence. It’s time has not yet come.
Days turned into weeks, then into months and the season began to change. Cool winds started to blow and slowly, within the mighty tree the flow of sap slowed as it prepared for the onslaught of winter. The leaf, deprived of the vital life flow began to wither, its glossy green turning to gold and its hold on the branch began to weaken. All around, the other leaves were falling to the ground, blown on the winds until they drifted into the river, and were carried away by the current. One of the last, our leaf fell as well, and like the others was carried on the wind to the river, but this was a leaf with a mission. Ignoring all the other leaves as they floated listlessly downstream with the flow, our leaf set off upstream. It was on a quest, a search for truth and the source of life, for they are as one.
Time seemed to have no meaning as it floated against the current, the banks of the stream drew closer together and the current stronger, but the will to carry on was stronger. Eventually, withered and torn by the rigors of the journey and the ravages of time, it came to a place where the water rose, gurgling softly up from within the cool brown earth. It was fresh and fragrant; it was from the earth itself. The mission was complete; this was the Holy Grail of eternal life, the truth was there for all to see, as it always has been. The Earth opened her arms and welcomed the leaf to her bosom, as a mother would a lost child. The leaf had come home to the source of life, returned to become part of the on-going cycle, the perpetual recreation of life on Earth.
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