Lessons From The Rose Bush

Perhaps you were once (or still are) like a beautiful rose bush. You stood out, had beautiful foliage, displayed this awesome spray of vibrant flowers, so fragrant. Yes, you had your share of thorns as well, but these were well shielded and overshadowed by your sheer beauty. People liked you and you possibly even stood as feature in the entire garden.

You Get Pruned

One fine day “the gardener” comes along and brutally cuts you down, he takes away from you everything that you see as you, your beautiful flowers, the slender branches that gave you form and shape, your beautiful green foliage, all gone. All that’s left behind are bare stems, unsightly, naked, the beauty gone, the thorns within you now clearly visible and stark.

Inner Alignment Rose pruning

One may ask, seriously dude ?, why on earth would you cut down a perfect and beautiful growing rose bush. I’m guessing it took a while for it to reach this stage and it probably had its share of challenges to overcome to be where it is now. At face value, it certainly seems ridiculous and unfair to the plant .. like why ?

Such is life, one may say. One day, life’s a bed of roses, the next day we are struck down bare. How many of us have gone through similar, an illness, cancer, a break up, a loss of someone, kicked out of a job, thrown into the deepest and darkest of places, the list goes on.

The Challenge

It can be hard to pick up the pieces, hard to make sense and meaning out of all this. Some of us just get dragged down so much, it’s just difficult to bounce back. You hate the world, you hate your life, you hate yourself. At times suicide may even seem like a viable option. Others in comparison trudge along, but the sparkle is gone, life’s just a drag spinning round and round.

Then there others where all this can resemble water off a duck’s back , they move on, they become more resilient, they bounce back like one of those bouncy balls.

So, why is this ? Why do different people react differently to similar circumstances. Now I say this with the utmost respect for each of your situations as I’ve not lived your life, I’ve not felt your pain, how could I know what you’ve gone through. I don’t ! and I’d never presume to know.

The Lessons

However, what we take from life can be connected to what we perceive of life and of the trials and tribulations of life. “Can be connected” Ha ha .. I’m being light with my words here, in fact perception is everything !!

Lets comeback to the rose bush. Usually the rose bush, if left to its own devices, unattended and left to grow on its own, can get rather gangly and unsightly, spreading out. Resources and nutrients are spread across and between maintenance, growth of these gangly branches and to flowering. Sometimes the bush starts to seed at the expense of flowering. This whole gangly thing can get even more unsightly during the colder months and when spring comes, new growth which produce a new burst of flowers can happen. However sometimes, as in this case, there can be inadequate opportunity for new growth, new vibrancy to happen when the rose bush is the way it is.

And such is life too.

Part of the science behind the practice of pruning of roses during winter is to stimulate and encourage new growth and vibrancy come spring. To let nature take its course, to trigger the plant’s blueprint to overcome, to survive and thrive. To regrow what’s been lost, and quite often in turn, with greater vigour.

“something may have to die first for something new to grow”

The Choice

So ! Let’s come back to the concept of perception. What can you make of the “pruning” that’s taken place in your life ? Yes, it could be seen as unfair, you did not deserve it, it is real, you’re living it and it can be hard for others to understand this at times.

But, it’s said that so long as we hold on to the negative effects of what’s happened, the reality of our life can turn out to be just that. Hence the choice is ours !

One could choose to see it as just that or alternatively choose to move on, look for the lessons within, learn from it and find a way to allow the pruning to nurture the new growth and vibrancy within you. Could this perhaps been part of the greater plan in your life?

I’ll leave it here, perhaps touch more on this in a later blog. But if you have been “pruned”, do take a chance to consider “that outside of the box”, the hidden meanings, the hidden lessons within the “pruning”.

Know too that we can inadvertently entrap ourselves within that deep and dark place by totally accepting and unwittingly being too accustomed to it. It comes down to a matter of choice of perception. At times “You must make a choice to take a chance or your life will never change.



Just Jump – Take A Leap !

Goldfish jumping into the sea
Just Do It – Jump!


There are times when you may wonder if where you are in your life is where you should be ? ….And you feel deep down, something needs to change, but  Aggrraaahh ! It’s just hard .. The How’s, The What Ifs come in. Continue reading Just Jump – Take A Leap !



The Dark Swamp Metaphor

One can metaphorize the experiences and challenges of our lives as a long journey, segmented by beautiful paved paths, lush meadows, rolling hills and then too, raging rivers, torrent downfalls, rocky paths, swamps, steep mountains, the list goes on.

How do we then negotiate this ? Continue reading The Dark Swamp Metaphor



My First Blog Post

Hello, my name is Tony Ratnam a.k.a. (Abang Joe).

Well, I’ve finally done, started a blog page, after sitting on the intention for ages. I have loads of stuff in my head that I want to get out, based on my journey in life, my experiences, my passions, things I know, self authored articles based on the work on I do. Hopefully this is the catalyst to me writing my first two books, currently too trapped in my head .. LOL !!

First a bit about me & I’ll proceed to tell you the story behind “Abang Joe“. Continue reading My First Blog Post