An opportunity to develop your awareness and relationship with yourself and your natural environment.
A way of talking with Nature and learning to attend to her needs.
You are a part of Nature!
You live inside the evolved body of an animal.
Consider that when you breathe, a piece of the sky is inside your body.
When you eat natural foods your body is built from plants, animals and minerals.
When the sun warms your skin or its light is received by your eyes then some of its rays become a part of you too.
And each time you drink, part of a river, spring or ocean is inside of you.
You are a part of Nature, not separate from her.
You are affected by the sun, the cycles of the moon, the weather, the energy of the land and the quality of the water and air.
To abuse Nature is to abuse yourself. To love and heal Nature is to love and heal yourself. And to love and heal yourself will likewise love and heal Nature. There is no separation.
As a human being you are a very special part of Nature. You are the part of Nature which can think, feel, be aware and make conscious choices.
Nature is alive and intelligent. If you are humble, aware and love Nature she will teach you many things. But first you must learn her language.
Connecting with Nature
Getting in touch with Nature means getting in touch with yourself… with your own inner nature, with your body and with your senses.
- Body scan, breath awareness
First, become aware of your body. Starting at the top of your head, take several minutes to connect with each part of your body, gradually shifting your focus from one part of your body to the next until you reach your toes. This is called a body scan.
Next, become aware of the movement of your breath within your body. You don’t need to control your breath in any way, just notice the rise… and the fall… the rise… and the fall… of your natural, relaxed breath. Continue this for several minutes.
The Secret of Communicating with Nature
Once you are still and quiet inside you may become present and aware of the world around you with your senses, rather than focusing on inner mental chatter.
- Sense awareness in nature… What can you See? Hear? Feel? Smell? Taste?
Take several minutes to observe each of the five physical senses, one at a time. You don’t need to label or analyse what you are sensing, simply be aware, moment by moment.
If you become aware enough Nature may choose to communicate with you. This communication can happen on two levels – physical observation and spiritual (or symbolic) interpretation.
Physical: You may notice that the trees in a particular area look sick or thirsty, or that the soil is eroded.
Imagine the tree could talk. What might it say? If you were its friend what might it ask you for? What might it offer you?
Spiritual / Symbolic: A bird may show you how being observant allows you to seize opportunities. Water might teach you how by being flexible you can flow around obstacles. (Polluted water shows our inner waters (emotions) are not clear and clean). The Sun may teach you how to be born anew after a dark time in your life.
Over time, if you listen and treat Nature as an intelligent friend who speaks her own language, she will teach you many things. She may even teach you how to take better care of her.
- Allow something in nature to ‘speak’ to you, to tell you or teach you something.
This takes being aware without thinking too much or trying too hard. It’s a bit like quietly noticing something which jumps out at you and letting it bring something out from inside you. As you attend to this process, knowledge or meaning emerges.
The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho. This is a wise tale of adventure in which the main character learns to speak with Nature.