Soul Gardening: Lessons from the Garden.

Cultivating a Life of Passion and Grace

People who love this world, people who pay attention, are gardeners, whether or not they have ever picked up a trowel. Because gardening is not just about digging. Gardening is about cherishing. And to cherish, one must be present.

Garden columnist, Henry Mitchell, wrote that one day we would all die, but that the questions is how we spent our days. Were we fidgeting over moles and fungi and varmints, or glorying, year by year, in the daffodils?

It is easy to lose our sense of self in this world of hurry and distraction and anxiety.

Have you been pulled in so many directions that you don’t feel at home in your own skin?
Have you felt drained, depleted, stuck, lost, out of kilter, empty, frazzled, hurried or just plum-tuckered?
Have you wished for a time and place to be nourished, replenished and renewed?
Does nature and a garden do your heart good?

If you answered yes to one or more of the above, welcome to Soul Gardening. You’re in the right place.

This is true: in the garden, you are invited to SLOW DOWN, to harness the power of pause, to practice the sacrament of the present moment.

In the garden, life flows from a place of gladness…
In the garden, we do not give in to urgency…
In the garden, there is a new understanding about what is important, significant of value…
In the garden, there is a renewal, a rediscovery of passion…
In the garden, we feel empowered to say how our story ends…
In the garden, there is peace of mind, no matter what is happening in the world around us.

Passion and gardening

In this eCourse we will…

Open our heart to the rhythms of the garden.
We will discover ways to practice the sacrament of the blessed present.
We will work to embrace the demanding marriage of loving and losing.
We will cultivate appreciation the value of stillness and solitude.
We will receive the healing power of nature.
We will make space for the ordinary gifts of grace.
We will nurture our soul, and renew our sense of what it means to live fully alive.

How the Course Works

Through our online course portal and during live calls, we will share reflections, practices, conversations, and photos with fellow journeyers. You can complete each module at your own pace.

You will have an opportunity to learn, to befriend your hurried self and to live your days fully alive and wholehearted, finding, creating and embracing sanctuary.

And, I will be present with you throughout the course as a part of the ongoing conversation and the communication thread.

Sessions overview

Introduction – arrested by an iris
Paradigm shift about what it means to be human
With a paradigm shift, our questions change.
What are your questions, about things that really matter?
What happens when you are arrested by an iris?

Session 1 – spend the afternoon
Letting our souls catch up with our bodies
Sacrament of the present moment
The power of pause… to see with new eyes
Can we practice the permission to do nothing?

Session 2 – grey gates, new eyes
What and how and why we label experiences
as wasted or lost or worthless or ugly
What is scotoma, and what does it meant to see with new eyes?

Session 3 – moments of intoxication
What does it mean to be gobsmacked?
What messages to we carry with us that are meant to downplay ecstasy?
What life does intoxication give our senses?
How have we assumed that intoxication is synonymous with inebriation?
How do we find intoxication with a need to orchestrate or control it?

Session 4 – obsessions and dandelions
What are the dandelions in our emotional life?
What are the ways we try to eradicate them?
What is the message we have received?

Session 5 – a recipe is not a handcuff
To just be… easier said than done
When have you just found moments of rest and renewal without a need to assess or judge?

Session 6 – magnificent heartbreaks
What do we fear about grief—or loss or death or failure?
What gifts have you found in moments of loss and grief?
Does that gift have to carry optimistic or upbeat emotion?

Session 7 – a quiet mind – winter’s release
Here’s the deal: It’s time to take a Sabbath
What do you see, hear, smell?
“They never say what they were not used to seeing.” Pablo Neruda

Session 8 – enchantment and gooseflesh
How do we find passion?
What do you want to experience here (adjectives exercise)?

Session 9 – the grace of wonder
What are the gifts we carry with us?

Praise for Soul Gardening

Life is a garden. Exquisite beauty is everywhere and Terry’s words and insights will help you adjust your lens in order to see it, feel it, and be grateful. – Harold Ivan Smith

When I looked up from reading Terry’s Soul Gardening, I was surprised to find myself in my own living room and not in Mr. Hershey’s garden. This is not just an eCourse… it’s an experience. – Barbara DeGrote-Sorensen


About Terry Hershey

Terry Hershey is an author, humorist, inspirational speaker, dad, ordained minister, golf addict, and smitten by French wine. He divides his time between designing sanctuary gardens and sharing his practice of “pausing” and “sanctuary,” to help us do less and live more. Terry’s book, Sanctuary: Creating Places For Grace In Your Life, offers the permission to slow down and to be gentle with ourselves, in a world that demands More-Bigger-Faster. Most days, you can find Terry out in his garden–on Vashon Island in the Puget Sound—because he believes that there is something fundamentally spiritual about dirt under your fingernails.

You can start soul gardening now.

I’m here to support you on this journey and look forward to seeing you grow a soul garden in your life.