If we don’t project onto the tree the attributes of a human mind, the “tree-self” appears vastly different from our own. Since trees don’t harm us, and give themselves without a whimper to our needs, the common consensus is that they are benign. So we might imagine a rather benevolent selfless creature, infinitely patient and merely growing to fulfill its destiny of life. We could also consider that the tree is very directly filling life functions without the existence of a self acting as intermediary. But life without self is not a popular notion within our culture.

-Peter Ralston

 

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