Today is the 50th Anniversary of ‘Earth Day.’ Be sure to spend some time in nature today, in gratitude, as you celebrate this wondrous planet where we all live. We are the earth’s caregivers and protectors, and that was never more evident and important than now. As Astronaut Carl Sagan’s photo demonstrated and spoke of, the earth is but a tiny speck of dust in the Universe. “Everyone you love, everyone you know, everyone you ever heard of, every human being who ever was, lived out their lives,” Sagan later wrote. “On a mote of dust suspended in a sunbeam.”Candy Hansen, a planetary scientist at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory who worked on the Voyager imaging team noted, “It also made me think about how vulnerable our tiny planet is.”
‘Shinrin yoku’ – Japanese ‘Forest Bathing.’ Shinrin in Japanese means “forest,” and yokumeans “bath.” Shinrin-yoku means ‘bathing in’ or ‘taking in’ the forest atmosphere through all of your senses.
We all know how being in nature can make us feel good. The practice of ‘Shinrin yoku’ means ‘being in’ and ‘connecting with’ nature through your all of your senses – sight, hearing, taste, smell and touch. Enjoying the sounds of the forest, birds singing, insects and animals moving through the woods, the wind rustling through the leaves, the scent of the earth, leaves, flowers and trees, the sunlight filtering through the leaves, the clean fresh air. Enjoying flora and fauna in nature, while escaping the sounds and routines of everyday life. These experiences in nature, and the time you take away fromthe ‘hustle and bustle,’ provides a sense of peace, comfort and calm. Being in nature can reenergize, refresh and rejuvenate you, improving your overall health and sense of wellbeing.
Studies Show that Nature Environments and Meditation Helps to:
- promote lower concentrations of cortisol (stress hormone),
- improve mood
- improve mental health,
- lower pulse rate,
- lower blood pressure,
- boost the immune system,
- improve attention, concentration and mental clarity,
- lower sympathetic nerve activity (decreased stress),
- provides greater parasympathetic nerve activity (increased relaxation),
- promotes a greater sense of happiness, positivity and gratitude.
Celebrate ‘Earth Day’ by Spending Some Time in Nature, Today and Everyday. Whether in your back yard, your garden, porch or deck, or local woods, enjoy the sights, sounds, scents and sensations of nature…, and enjoy the benefits for your physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual well being.
For those unable to get out in nature, enjoy a ‘virtual’ shinrin yoku. Immerse yourself in these scenes, and imagine the sounds, scents and sensations of being in nature, as you take a virtual ‘walk in the woods.’
Earth Day ‘Guided Meditation’ Tonight on Zoom. FREE.
Advance Registration Required. Limited #. (Nee good internet connection. Zoom or video camera unnecessary). To Register. Questions and more details – Email: firstname.lastname@example.org or Phone: 978.238.4258
- Braiding Sweetgrass: Indigenous Wisdom, Scientific Knowledge, and the Teachings of Plants, by Robin Wall Kimmerer
- The Forest Unseen: A Year’s Watch in Nature, by David George Haskell
- The Hidden Life of Trees: What They Feel, How They Communicate – Discoveries from a Secret World, by Peter Wohlleben, Tim Flannery
- Walden, by Henry David Thoreau
- A Walk in the Woods: Rediscovering America on the Appalachian Trail, by Bill Bryson
- Your Brain on Nature: The Science of Nature’s Influence on Your Health, Happiness and Vitality by