Fran Sorin’s 10th Anniversary of Digging Deep

frandigging deep cover

November–the month of thanksgiving, appreciation and gratitude–is one of my favorite months. Many people in recovery have an affinity for November and are often known to use the 30 days as a time to “give back what has been freely given.”

In that spirit, I want to share with you an interview with my friend and fellow writer Fran Sorin, who recently released the 10th Anniversary Edition of Digging Deep: Unearthing Your Creative Roots Through Gardening.

Don’t be fooled by the title!

Digging Deep is a powerfully uplifting and transformative self-help book for the creatively and spiritually challenged. @bheretoday (Click to Tweet). If you think, “I’m not creative,” think again. Fran will help you harness your instincts and live a life filled with joy and creativity–and isn’t that the whole point?

I asked Fran how Digging Deep applies to B Here Today readers–gardeners and non-gardeners alike. She said, “When we are on all fours in the garden—digging a hole in the ground –we are not only tending to the garden, but we are tending to our souls. The infinite beauty and magic of nature awakens all of our senses and enables us to move beyond the realm of ordinary consciousness.

“We enter a world of sacredness where we feel an overwhelming sense of gratitude for not only being alive—but for experiencing ‘oneness’ with the universe. We tuck these jeweled moments of gratitude away into our consciousness, knowing that we can access them anytime (especially when facing obstacles) to help us stay grounded, resilient and focused on the stuff that really matters.”

Holy cow. That’s so cool and so, well, deep.

“Think about it,” she said. “Each of us has the ability to improve the quality of our lives by freeing up our imagination, improvising, taking more risks, experimenting, living with uncertainty, and being more mindful. Although I use the process of gardening as a tool for making my point, learning to live creatively outside of the garden—in all areas of your life—is the ultimate challenge.”

Is gardening a spiritual practice?

“Oh yes, for sure,” Fran said . “The beauty of gardening is that humankind’s connection to nature is such a primordial one that when you slow down, and let yourself just ‘be’ in the moment with nature, tending to the plants, you automatically can enter a Zen-like state. There’s a rhythm and beauty to it unlike any other spiritual practice I know of.

“Believe me, those moments leave deep impressions in your soul and you walk through this earth overflowing with gratitude and a feeling of abundance. If that’s not spirituality, I don’t know what is.”

I wondered whether, as a spiritual practice, gardening has transformational qualities, so I asked Fran if she had ever felt transformed.

She spoke about the time when she went through the first major renovation in her garden by tearing out all the shrubs in her front yard and replacing them with perennials.

“That was a real marker for unearthing the fear and trepidation that had bound me for so many years. I started trusting my instincts, to pay attention to what I knew would work for me, and to take some real risks and be willing to make mistakes.

“I learned to live with ambiguity and to not always rush to conclusion. In the garden, you just have to wait and see what’s going to happen—something I was never all that good at in my personal life. I liked to know what was going to happen at all times. But I started to trust the process of life more, both in my plants and in myself.”

Thank you, Fran, for sharing your love of gardening and your joy in living with us. Purchase Digging Deep through Amazon here.

Fran Sorin is an author, a recognized garden expert, deep ecologist, ordained interfaith minister, and soul tending coach who has a gift of awakening others to the joy of life.

Photos courtesy of Fran Sorin

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4 Comments

  1. Hey Beth and Fran,

    Great interview. I never really thought of gardening as a spiritual practice until I read Fran’s book. Being outdoors and working with living plants can be so healing for whatever is going on. I love how Fran isn’t afraid to test out new ideas in her garden and encourages the creativity in the reader. Thanks for sharing her book!

  2. Fran Sorin says:

    Dear Cathy,

    I thought of you over the weekend when I had dinner with my niece who is a therapist and has several teenage clients who are dealing with addiction/eating disorders, etc.

    One of the first thing she tells them -which I was impressed with- that regardless of how they feel, they need to get out and take a walk each day—just to be in nature.

    I really believe that if every one did spend time in nature on a daily basis, their quality of life would change significantly.

    Thanks for your thoughts. xo-Fran

  3. Fran Sorin says:

    Dear Beth-
    Thanks so much for reading Digging Deep and taking the time to write about it.You know what’s interesting? If you asked most keen gardeners if gardening was a spiritual act, they might not even know how to answer the question BUT they would tell you that they feel less stressed, at peace, and connected to nature while on all fours. Now—if that doesn’t sound like heaven, what does? Fondly, Fran

    • Beth says:

      That definitely sounds like heaven, Fran. So grateful to you and for all the work you’re doing to make a difference in this world. Let’s keep gardening and getting closer to heaven!

      Peace to you!

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