In spite of predictions of a hot, dry summer, my area has received a fairly steady amount of rain lately. Because of this, the ground is very soft and wet, and I've been seeing trees, large, lovely trees, that have simply fallen over. They've never had to develop deep root systems to search for moisture and became top-heavy. So when the ground around them became to soft to support them, they just fell over.
It's really saddened me to see something that is otherwise so beautiful have such a fatal weakness. And, of course, it made me think of myself. Maybe I can relate to the trees, having felt that exposed lack of strength on occasion.
Was it Plutarch that said the unexamined life is not worth living? Seems almost as if the unexamined life will STOP living, simply as a result of natural laws. Or social laws, frequently.
Sometimes I've had the experience, or opposition, necessary to develop roots. Occasionally, I've been smart enough to learn from others' examples. And, gratefully, I've had the right kind of people around to help re-plant me when I fall over.
Right now I have a younger brother and a step-son who are both conciously deciding not to develop any deep roots. It really hurts to see what is, to me, such obvious self-destructive behavior. It's equally hard to let them live their own lives, and to just be available if they ever do ask.