Quotes of Stephen Buhner

This is a compilation of my tweets from Stephen Harrod Buhner’s book The Secret Teachings of Plants: The Intelligence of the Heart in the Direct Perception of Nature.

… the things that you need to find you will find, if only you will follow your heart.

Once people have a name for something, their tendency is to think they understand it and once they think they understand it, they quite experiencing it fresh and new each time they encounter it.

Ultimately life must be, is intended to be, experienced.

You are learning a different kind of language now, and you must be suspicious of the word. Words are the domain of the linear mind …

Allow your sensory perceptions to be your thinking. Sense instead of think.

Eventually you have to move from looking and go into feeling, realizing that feeling is a sense, too. Not the touch of the fingers, but the touch of the heart. This kind of touch has another dimension, deeper than that possessed by the fingers.

… if you have an assumption about the form in which the knowledge will appear, you will overlook much that is important.

We are meant to feel the touch of the world upon us.

The use of direct perception … is an extremely elegant way of truly knowing, not thinking …

In the initial stages of developing your natural capacity for direct perception, the learning itself, the experience of the work, takes all your attention.

The process is a long one. Each year that you use this mode of cognition the more phenomena you will encounter, each of which will demand a greater clarity from you.

You will find that once you begin this process, the world will shape you; the things that come to you will be the ones you needed to meet in order to become yourself, to attain a 360-degree perspective once more.

… direct perception initiates an unavoidable encounter with your own personal history. … unfinished emotional baggage … will interfere with your ability to see clearly … All human beings possess these unclarities — these histories.

The human organism naturally restructures itself around the meanings that are experienced.

… encountered meaning reorients the human, entrains the human, to reflect that meaning.

We live in a world … of meanings.

Our perception of the meanings in the phenomena around us connects us to those meanings; observer and observed become linked through the process of perception.

… the Earth … is not two-dimensional words on a page, not a static thing, but a living, ever-flowing communication of meaning.

Direct depth perception of … any phenomenon in Nature will always reveal dimensions to its being that science can never see because those dimensions are invisible to the linear mode of consciousness.

The difficult thing is to not turn these skills you are learning into merely a method … Ultimately, this mode of perception is not just a tool, it is a way of life, a mode of being.

You will know the importance of the lesson by the power of its touch upon you.

The use of direct perception in gathering knowledge from the heart of the world is extremely ancient. … it is pervasive throughout all cultures and all times.

Take a deep breath
Look at what is right in front of you.

… consciously perceive and identify the embedded communications that come from the world around you and are felt in subtle emotions.

Because Nature does not lie, the direct perception of Nature means that each of us who does lie, each part of us that lies, even in our deep unconscious, must reorder, must restructure, if we truly want to perceive deeply in Nature.

Ultimately, the use of direct perception as a mode of being, as a normal way of cognition, begins to erase mind-body dualism.

When we accept the reality of this mode of perception, begin to use it regularly in a continual, participatory interweaving, we enter a geography of meaning … of which the physical forms of the world are only one aspect.

The drive to know, the intention, is crucial, but it is not the only factor at work. You are establishing a relationship … It is an act of intimacy that is extremely deep.

We are engaged in communicating through a highly complex, nonverbal form of linguistics, of which our language is only a reflection. Our brains perform an act of translation. … But this translation must be continually reconnected to the origin itself …

It is our capacity for perceiving meaning that is primary, not language. Our language is a created form expressed out of the original nonverbal languages that human beings have always apprehended. It is a shadow, a reflection, a copy.

The use of direct perception … is an extremely elegant way of truly knowing, not thinking …

You must understand … that this approach … is not a technique. It is not a reductionist series of steps … It is a communication.

When someone truly sees us
and, in caring, urges us
into the warmth of a loving embrace,
we leave the darkness
in which we have taken refuge
and come once more
into the light.

If you follow those feelings they lead you on the most amazing adventure, and you end up becoming yourself in the most wonderful way.

The multisensory nature of human perception and feeling is so commonly repressed that it is often confusing, or scary, or awkward when you open up to it once more. Still, allow yourself to notice whatever you feel and … don’t make any judgments about it. Just notice it.

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