The Everything Seed
by Carole Martignacco
illsutrated by Joy Troyer
The Everything Seed is a metaphoric creation story that feels surprisingly malleable; able to fit a variety of traditions, but essentially describes the big bang as though it were a seed opening.
The illustrations are a simple, bright and vivid series of batiks. The effect is stunning and celestial.
I appreciate that it is the story a seed, because this emphasizes the importance of plants to human life and all life on earth. In practical physical terms, observable in our lives as contemporary humans, we do, in a real sense come from plant seeds. The food we eat either is seed, grew from a seed, or was fed seeds and plants grown from a seed. In this way, our bodies are made of plants. This perspective is awe-inspiring to me and is something I am happy to share with my children. This book fits right into that.
I also like the way that The Everything Seed works as an origin story. I maintain a healthy skepticism about the supremacy of scientific explanation of our distant origins over traditional mythological/metaphoric stories in terms of the functional purpose of this knowledge of supplying our human curiosity with an understanding of our origins, thus rooting our beings to this place. However I found this book to be poetic in its description in the exact way that speaks to our curiosity and roots us in the story of the natural world.
Even for families enthusiastic about the gospel truth of the Big Bang, this story supplies a consistent explanation of the big bang. Again, it is not explicitly so, so it is adaptable to many traditions or belief systems that do not have their own strict, exclusive creation story. If your family chooses to hold the parallel truths of science and mythology this may be a perfect book. It’s also perfect for Unitarian families since it was written by a Unitarian minister.