Blog 134 April Has Earth and Arbor Days
Honoring, caring for, and enjoying Nature supports health, spirit, mind, and inner peace, as well as World Peace. During this time of stress and change, walking and spending quiet time in a forest preserve, on a beach, in grasslands, deserts, mountains, and other natural settings is a healing activity that helps not only yourself, but those with whom you connect. Even the city contains Nature, whether it is tree-lined streets, small parks, squirrels, birds, rabbits and other animals, butterflies, moths, earthworms, crickets, and more. Standing on grass and looking up at the night sky or venturing out into the rain are ways to connect with Nature. Growing an outdoor garden, or cultivating plants indoors, as well as caring for animals at home are other ways to connect with the natural world.
Earthing (walking outside barefoot on the grass or on the beach) is a way to increase your physical vitality and center your mind and emotions in vibrant, supportive settings. Forest Bathing, something people have always done, was developed into an ecotherapy in the 1990’s by Japanese therapists. This therapy often includes a guide for several people, though it can be done solo. The forest bather spends quiet time in a wooded area, very mindfully, tuning in to the surrounding beauty, peace, activity and unpredictability. Some bring a tarp or blanket and lie on the ground for a while, or sit under a tree or by a stream and quietly observe. Often, slow walking, interspersed with standing, and occasional commentary from a guide, if one is present, is the main activity.
Other activities in Nature can involve volunteer work, possibly doing some prairieland restoration or cleaning up a river. Some people restore hiking trails with organizations such as the Sierra Club. Canoeing, kayaking, boating, biking or mountain climbing are ways to appreciate the natural world. Even going to a Farmers’ Market and purchasing wholesome, local produce can help you feel close to Nature. For Arbor Day, people may celebrate by planting trees, cleaning up local parks, and organizing or attending classes about tree identification, planting and pruning. Earth Day, may be celebrated with activities such as setting up a bird feeder or pollinator garden, picking up trash lying along a roadside, or setting up a clothing swap, to make sure old clothing does not go to waste.
Treat the Earth with respect – if we don’t treasure and care for the Earth and Nature, how can we care for ourselves?
This blog’s offer. Contact me if you would like to join our Nature Writing Group, and read next month’s blog, which will include some original Nature writing from group members. And thanks for the help I got writing this one. Will be back, able to do all the work with the next blog.