“Forget not that the earth delights to feel your bare feet and the winds long to play with your hair.” ~ Khalil Gibran
Modern culture teaches us to fear nature. We live indoors where there is an illusion of control and we see ourselves as somehow separate or above nature. We forget what we are and where we came from – the Earth. We are her children. This disconnect from nature and our primal selves results in so much pain and illness – the way we pollute the earth is a macrocosmic example of how we treat our bodies and our minds on a daily basis. The disconnect results in many psychological, spiritual and even physical problems – because we are living in an illusion. There is no real way to separate yourself from nature or your own essence – truth is we depend on Mother Nature and that scares us! Our very survival depends on how we connect with and care for her. Clearly we need Mother Nature and cannot live without her!
When you describe something – whether that is a state, feeling, relationship, experience or anything else, “natural” almost always means good, right, easy or healthy. When we describe something as unnatural it often means it is disconnected or out of sync in some way – something is off or imbalanced. Deep in our hearts true wisdom still exists and each of us has the knowing of who we are – even if our brains temporarily forget. There is a desire to be natural – close to nature, like nature – like our true selves.
Nature doesn’t just provide food, shelter, medicine and water – it provides something else. It provides beauty and inspiration – food for the soul. Anywhere you look at the natural world, all the colors fit together perfectly. The shapes all create beauty. Nature never goes out of style!
And nature feeds our souls in other ways as well! When you walk in the forest the trees don’t just exchange breath with you – they also exchange their energy. Ancient mystical traditions knew this, and recently science has started to discover the same thing! Just spending time next to trees heals you – it helps you relax and relieve stress. The trees share their energy – their nectar if you will, and this energy is medicine. It is food for the soul.
But if we have lost our connection to nature in some ways, and if we have become confused about how nature relates to us – how can we remember to connect with and care for her responsibly again? Through science and through studying the cultures who still stay connected to the land and its beauty!
Science - noun - the systematic study of the nature and behavior of the material and physical universe, based on observation, experiment, and measurement, and the formulation of laws to describe these facts in general terms. - Merriam Websters online dictionary
This definition does not only describe how scientists can teach us to work with nature responsibly and ethically, but it also describes the practice of indigenous people over many thousands of years before our word “science” was ever invented. There is knowledge held by indigenous wisdom keepers and other people who live close to the land that luckily has survived to this day – and this wisdom can teach us so much about the world around us and our own “inner-nature” (the nature inside of us all).
The best part about this wisdom is that it isn’t something that requires a teacher or blind faith in any way – it is something you can experience for yourself! It is all around you in the birds, the trees, the sky and the rocks! The whole earth is filled with energy and consciousness working together in reciprocation and a constant flux of shifting harmony and balance. The trick to connecting with this reciprocating flow in a more conscious way is heavily based on intention to do so as well as openness and willingness to embrace new perspectives, ideas and ways of living.
Study nature. Study yourself. Know your heart and express your heart. Celebrate the world around you. Sit with intention and hear the Earth speak her wisdom.
~ This chapter is an excerpt from my book How The Earth Saved My Soul (Copyright 2017)