Rays

I’ve related with this fiery and radiant wonder for as long as I can remember.
Never looking deeply into it, its strength and beauty affected me. The yellow color pulls me to optimism. The height stretches me to look up – pushing my mind to dream. Then after searching deeper into its abilities and strengths, I believe not only do I personally have dozens of lessons to learn from the sunflower, we could all benefit from behaving a bit more like one.

After all, you’re not very likely to feel represented by a flower that lives in a house or hides in the shade delicate and protected. That’s. just. not. life.

However, sunflowers chase the rays and radiate the sun. Their bright yellow color represents joy, happiness, intellect, and energy. Likewise, spiritually, yellow is typically considered a color representing a sense of vision, personal identity, and authority. Let’s put it simply, from its structure to its appearance, the sunflower represents optimism and strength. Nevertheless, this still wasn’t what captured me the most about the sunflower.

When beginning to study the Sunflower I learned that the sunflower needs its space. If other flowers try to come into its space it chokes them out, and the competition makes for weak flowers. They need their room. If you know me, you know the harder I’m pushed the less likely I am to comply. As I read this my heart stopped for a second. The more I read the more astonished I was. “It’s me” kept running through my mind. The root system is also the most common way a sunflower is destroyed. When the root system catches a disease the flower can dwindle.

Also unlike a delicate flower, the sunflower reaches for the sun and grows closer and closer to it without withering or shying away. It stands strong and firm, taking the rays of sun to the face. The catch? Not only does it not shy from the rays, but it tracks them – literally.

The sunflower raises to face the sun in the morning and follows it all day long. It seeks the heat and light. The same heat and light many plants can’t withstand for too long of a duration.

It gets better. During seed production, the mature flowers continue to face east. If you didn’t connect the dots, I’ll gladly do so for you. When the sunflowers are ready to drop the “fruit” of their maturity, after long days chasing the sun and allowing the heat and strong rays to grow and strengthen them, they remain facing the east. Also known as a direction representing optimism and new beginnings.

The sunflower also has amazing healing abilities for a variety of things. It has in particular been beneficial for chest pain.

This is my personal favorite and also sobering realization from the sunflower. The “sunflower” would more accurately be called “sunflowers”. It may look like one individual beauty, however, it is an accumulation of hundred’s of small flowers which make up something bigger.

I could keep typing, explaining, and marveling. I think we could all learn something here, not about a flower(s) but about us…..

Who we could be if we don’t shrink away from the rays coming our way. Even if they are hard.

How one day the struggle we chased will cease and we will be left with fruit to our labors.

How our labors and the things we experience can actually heal the hearts of others if we don’t back down.

How we may look like one person but aren’t we all an accumulation of places and people who have touched our lives making us so much more.

Next time something you see resonates with your heart, I highly recommend chasing it to find out why and what you should learn from it.

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