This is part two of a two-part series on the Bayan tree.
It is interesting how in America and in many places across the world, most of our meetings take place in walled, sterile conference rooms. Chairs are uniformly around the table. The walls are usually plastered with notices about the company’s achievements. Pens and pads are available so we can write and record and get our business done. “Gosh darn it,” I can hear the executives say, “in this room we’re going to get to the solution, get down to business, and ‘make it happen.’“
Yet what if we looked at doing all of our business, or even holding all of our meetings, under a banyan tree? This return to nature might help conversations flow more easily.
Perhaps this atmosphere would allow us to be more authentic. If we are surrounded by nature’s occasional stirring winds, visionary clouds floating across the sky, and brilliant beckoning sun, would we not also settle into a more authentic course of conversation? Could it lead to more natural, comfortable (and no less impactful, but rather more so) solutions? Within this reframing context of nature, we can discuss our goals and hopes and plans and perhaps achieve even greater goals.
Here’s a thought… We can replace the pen, paper and busy scribbling of notes, with more eye contact. We supplant the flurried white board scrawls with more thoughtful listening. What a profound impact this has to have on any business relationship, business decision, and especially, with any personal matter.
Until we can “Unconference Room” your meeting space, perhaps we can imagine all of our conversations thoughtfully taking place under a Banyan tree. A place where comfort, understanding, and right relationships result under its strong, rooted and peaceful presence.
The banyan tree originally received its name from the merchants who gathered beneath it to do business; in the Gujarati language, “banya” means “merchant/grocer.” Western visitors to India observed the merchants meeting beneath the tree, and the name evolved to refer to the tree itself. The banyan trees are given great symbolism in both Hinduism and Buddhism. Banyan trees can grow to cover hundreds of feet, and live for over a thousand years.