“Long Multiplication” is the second of six doodles exploring principles found in nature which lead to flourishing. If something is not flourishing then it’s likely that something is missing or is inhibiting growth.
Plants don’t get bigger and bigger, they produce more plants. Human beings don’t keep growing bigger and bigger but produce little human beings.
What we take from this is that the things we grow in and develop and collect can be of benefit to others. It’s good to try out multiple activities that will be of benefit to others. These don’t have to be huge and dramatic: some of the most significant things we can grow are our ways of relating and caring for each other.
Seth Godin talks about how we ought to treat our ideas as dandelions and not as babies. If we care for ideas as if they are babies then we’ll focus on the one, lavishing time and energy, yet the one idea may not come to anything at all. If we treat ideas more as dandelions then we’re appreciating many will not make it – but some will.
Dandelion ideas produce many more ideas, one healthy idea that roots itself can lead to many more. I once brought together a group of people to help someone who’d been discovering and exploring their talents. After this person shared something of this, the group then gave back many ideas, so many that the person had to discard many of them.
The healthy thing about this is that complexipacity involves our ability to make many things happen, especially for others, because life flourishes when we allow many things to grow.
SOMETHING TO DO: Frederich Buechner spoke about finding our purpose where our deep gladness meets the world deepest hunger. Write down something you really love, then write out as many ideas for how you might share this with others. Don’t worry about how silly the ideas are – they’re dandelions, not babies. Pick your favourite three and looks for ways of doing these things in the next week.