Salvador interpreted his Midrash, “In this story about seeds, Pop is the farmer. The seed is his word. The first group hears the stories at the level of a story. Everything the Good Book tells you and everything I tell you is about the present.”
Salvador discussed the seed on the rocky ground, “The fundamentalist group best represents the seed thrown on rocky ground. The leaders among them sound like used car salesmen, and so do many of them.”
Salvador added, “They receive the word with great joy. They also have much knowledge in words, but no depth of understanding. They are not like the trees with deep roots that the word and what they see around them nourishes. They are as thistles, easily pulled. When the going gets tough, they show they have no faith, no understanding of their place in this cosmos, or their relation with Pop.”
Salvador strode over to a tree with a crab carved into it. “They show that they are like the crab. They have a hard shell and a very soft inside. They become extremely fearful and show this fear in great shows of anger. You are to be like the tree. It has faith in The Mighty Savior’s providence and reaches skyward and touches those around it with its softness.”
Salvador ambled over to a local path, knelt down, and pounded the path, “See, very hard. Nothing can take root and grow here.”
Salvador turned to his left, dug his hand into the loose soil, and allowed the soil to sift through his hands, “See, this soil is very soft. There is lots of air here. This is beautiful soil, ready to nourish others.”
Salvador stood up and hiked a few steps to slightly different soil. Weeds were present, and the few plants that were there were all week and scraggly. Salvador tried to burrow his way into the soil, but rocks and pebbles kept him from doing so.
Salvador commented, “Roots from wheat would have the same problem here. The soil is too hard.”
He again turned to his left and quipped, “See, the beautiful soil is all soft. Roots will take right into this stuff. Please note, the only difference between this soil…”
Salvador scooped with his right hand and pulled up some of the rocky soil, “and this soil…” he reached into the beautiful soil and pulled some up, “is that this soil has seen the roto-tiller, and therefore has air in it.”
Salvador pointed to the beautiful soil, “This soil is spiritual, a fancy Latin way of saying it has air in it. It has been aerated, tilled.”
Salvador pointed to the rocky soil, “This soil has rocks in it, it is so hard. See how hard it is.”
We all looked at the hardness of the soil as Salvador commented, “This soil is so hard that I had to scoop soil from the surface and could not burrow into it. Not so, with the beautiful soil.”
We all dug our hands into the beautiful soil and remarked at how easy it was to dig into it. Salvador stepped a few steps further and dug his hand into soil with weeds in it. As he did, he pulled up several of the weeds at the same time. It all came up in a clump.
Salvador commented, “This soil is like sod. No more plants can put their roots into this soil. It is already too full of roots.”
Salvador pointed at week, sick looking cows in a nearby field, “Look at those cows over there. They are scrub cattle, trampled upon until they become hard, and callous toward others. As they become harder and harder, they become like rocks, cold and uncaring.”
Salvador looked at the people as they fought with their things, then to the crowd as he quipped, “Please compare the crowd with the cattle. Both become mean, uncaring, fighting for that last piece of scrub grass, lest they die.”
Salvador pointed to people who were dressed very nice and who were moving their things around so they could get at their snacks and beverages they brought for the event. They fixed their heads so that they would not have to see the poor people as they sat nearby.
Salvador commented, “Like those people, we look the other way. We move to the suburbs so that we do not have to see the poor anymore. We start to tolerate the suffering of others. We watch violent movies and view it as entertainment.”
Salvador’s voice began to shake as he went on, “Finally, we become republican, hating the redistribution of goods which is ultimately the property of God, which God gives to all mankind for all to share.”
Salvador calmed himself down as he continued, “With forgiveness we become the beautiful soil. Most of the people coming to hear me are the scrub cattle of civilization. This address is to them. However trod upon and beat up we feel, we must let the Spirit come into our lives and see the same suffering in our neighbor. If we walk a mile in our neighbor’s shoes, we will not become hard.”
He looked at those around him, “If you do not cry when you see the suffering of others, you need to ask just how close you are to the Compassionate Judge who does cry. Through Penance he grinds the rocks of our lives down to the sand, silt, clay, humus, nitrogen, potash, and phosphorus that is beautiful soil.”
Salvador picked up a handful of beautiful soil, and let it fall between his fingers, “Beautiful soil is spiritual. When we are beautiful soil, we have the breath of God, beautiful air indeed, flowing through our lungs. What is this beautiful air? It is the air of compassion, kindness, and charity.”