Hvad er værdien?

Træerne er selve sjælen i Langesø, men ganske mange behandler dem som ukrudt. Men fristes til at tro, at tankegangen er noget i retning af: ”Det er sørme ærgerligt, at det er så svært at rykke de irriterende træer op bare med hånden, men heldigvis har man da en motorsav, og så er det problem ryddet af vejen i en ruf…”

Denne indstilling er vaskeægte afstumpethed i ordets egentlige betydning. Den afslører manglende sans for livets ægte værdier – ikke blot i ens eget, men i alle andre Langesøbeboeres miljø. Respekt for træerne på deres egne præmisser kendetegner et hjertevarmt menneske med styr på tilværelsens sande prioriteringer. Et ualmindeligt smukt eksempel på denne intelligente holdning til naturen kan man læse hos den tyske forfatter og Nobel-pristager Hermann Hesse, der især er berømt for romanen Steppeulven. Hermann Hesse videregiver her med sin kærlige og lærerige forståelse for træernes enestående værdi for mennesket.

Teksten stammer fra ”Wanderings: Notes and Sketches”. Den fulde engelske tekst kan læses nedenfor, og den er mere end værd at bruge lidt tid på. Jeg har oversat en kort smagsprøve til dansk. Håber det vil inspirere til videre læsning:

”Intet er mere helligt, intet er vigtigere end at værdsætte et smukt, stærkt træ. Når et træ fældes og afslører det nøgne dødelige sår til solen, kan man læse hele dets livshistorie i det lysende manuskript, som snittet gennem stammen afslører: Årringene viser træets opvækst og alle dets ar, alle dets kampe, alle dets sygdomme. Al dets glæde og medgang står sandfærdigt skrevet her. Det fortæller om de magre år og om de gode år og om de angreb og storme, der blev modstået…”

Bedre kan det ikke siges. Det er et uimodsigeligt argument for at bevare flest mulige af vores vidunderlige træer. Skulle vi ikke sende vores egne smålige behov og idéer ud på en velfortjent sidelinje?  Fuldvoksne træer er en næsten uerstattelig gave givet til os af venlige mennesker fra en langt klogere fortid. En gave, som vi må blive bedre til at værdsætte efter fortjeneste.

 

Hermann Hesse får nu selv ordet:  “For me, trees have always been the most penetrating preachers. I revere them when they live in tribes and families, in forests and groves. And even more, I revere them when they stand alone.

They are like lonely persons. Not like hermits who have stolen away out of some weakness, but like great, solitary men, like Beethoven and Nietzsche.

In their highest boughs the world rustles, their roots rest in infinity; but they do not lose themselves there, they struggle with all the force of their lives for one thing only: to fulfill themselves according to their own laws, to build up their own form, to represent themselves.

Nothing is holier, nothing is more exemplary than a beautiful, strong tree. When a tree is cut down and reveals its naked death-wound to the sun, one can read its whole history in the luminous, inscribed disk of its trunk: in the rings of its years, its scars, all the struggle, all the suffering, all the sickness, all the happiness and prosperity stand truly written, the narrow years and the luxurious years, the attacks withstood, the storms endured.

And every young farm boy knows that the hardest and noblest wood has the narrowest rings, that high on the mountains and in continuing danger the most indestructible, the strongest, the ideal trees grow.

Trees are sanctuaries. Whoever knows how to speak to them, whoever knows how to listen to them, can learn the truth. They do not preach learning and precepts. They preach, undeterred by particulars, the ancient law of life.

A tree says: A kernel is hidden in me, a spark, a thought, I am life from eternal life. The attempt and the risk that the eternal mother took with me is unique, unique the form and veins of my skin, unique the smallest play of leaves in my branches and the smallest scar on my bark. I was made to form and reveal the eternal in my smallest special detail.

A tree says: My strength is trust. I know nothing about my fathers, I know nothing about the thousand children that every year spring out of me. I live out the secret of my seed to the very end, and I care for nothing else. I trust that God is in me. I trust that my labor is holy. Out of this trust I live.

When we are stricken and cannot bear our lives any longer, then a tree has something to say to us: Be still! Be still! Look at me! Life is not easy; life is not difficult. Those are childish thoughts. . . . Home is neither here nor there. Home is within you, or home is nowhere at all.

A longing to wander tears my heart when I hear trees rustling in the wind at evening. If one listens to them silently for a long time, this longing reveals its kernel, its meaning. It is not so much a matter of escaping from one’s suffering, though it may seem to be so. It is a longing for home, for a memory of the mother, for new metaphors for life. It leads home. Every path leads homeward, every step is birth, every step is death, every grave is mother.

So, the tree rustles in the evening, when we stand uneasy before our own childish thoughts: Trees have long thoughts, long-breathing and restful, just as they have longer lives than ours. They are wiser than we are, as long as we do not listen to them. But when we have learned how to listen to trees, then the brevity and the quickness and the childlike hastiness of our thoughts achieve an incomparable joy. Whoever has learned how to listen to trees no longer wants to be a tree. He wants to be nothing except what he is. That is home. That is happiness.”

Respektindgydende lærerigt.  Ægte kærlig visdom. Tankevækkende. Her er ord, man bør lægge sig på sinde, når man næste gang står over for et vidunderligt træ.

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