Wis­dom Grows In My Garden

September 1, 2021

Rab­bi Plotkin is approach­ing mid­dle age. His chil­dren are self-suf­fi­cient teens, and his large con­gre­ga­tion is run­ning effi­cient­ly and effec­tive­ly. He should be hap­py and sat­is­fied at where he is in life, yet he knows some­thing is miss­ing. He used to wake up to anx­i­ety and long to-do lists. Now he wakes up con­cerned about his zuc­chi­nis. The change baf­fles him until he real­izes he has a need to nur­ture, and right now the zuc­chi­nis are the only things that real­ly need him. This is the first of many life lessons the gar­den teach­es him about him­self and the world around him. This book is a nar­ra­tive mem­oir that will inform your life, amuse you in the process, and maybe even give you the itch to grow a zucchini!

Discussion Questions

Cour­tesy of Paul Plotkin

1. What did you learn from the book?

2. Did any of the author’s expe­ri­ences or lessons relate to you? If so, which ones?

3. Which of the life lessons were most impor­tant to you?

4. Which of the life lessons do you dis­agree with?

5. If you could talk to the author, what ques­tions would you ask him?

6. Have you ever expe­ri­enced the need to nur­ture? If so, what hap­pened when there was no one left who need­ed you?

7. Did the book make you want to garden?

8. The orig­i­nal title of the book was The Rabbi’s Gar­den. Would you have pre­ferred that title or the pub­lished one?

9. How do you feel about mes­sages that come to you in a dream?

10. How did you feel about the war with igua­nas? Do you see them as hos­tile ene­mies or crea­tures that should be left alone?

11. Who do you most want to read this book?

12. Of all the infor­ma­tion pre­sent­ed in the book, what has stayed with you the most?