A flower that is blooming doesn't look down on the buds on the next plant. The buds don't look up at the full bloom and push themselves to become that. They grow according to their nature and circumstances - pushing, yes, effort, yes, but not to achieve anything, just to be what their life demands of them. There is no better or worse. Just beauty in expression.
Blanche Hartman used Dogen's saying "Realization is effort without desire," as a koan for years. As she watched the progress of daffodils blooming, she realized, "Here was effort without desire right in front of me all the time! Just letting the flower of the life force bloom right here, right now, wholeheartedly and with nothing held back -- giving ourselves completely to whatever arises right in front of us moment after moment."
The flower of the life force. I like that.