This article, that you may edit,
experience and process of Educating,
Healing With Nature, the history of
ecology science designed by a Ph.D. It explores the
natural attractions register in our consciousness as natural senses.
They are included in an accredited learning and teaching tool that
us increase personal, social and environmental well-being by dissolving
Industrial Society's unreasonable prejudice against nature. This
helps our thoughts, feelings and spirit learn the how and why of
tapping our thinking into the grace, balance
and restorative powers of nature's web of
life community. It empowers us to grow a new
and reasonable passion to benefit
from and strengthen our inborn love of nature and life.
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The Science of Natural
Ecology: Educating, Counseling
and Healing With Nature Through 53 Natural Senses
Michael J. Cohen, Ph.D.
If you are reading this information on or from
a computer, your natural sense of trust is in play. What you trust is the
logic and value of the scientific process, of the intelligence of reasonable
thinking and technology that
discovered the power of a computer and the use of electronic
communication to convey information. This same trustable thinking
process has also discovered problems in our relationship with life on Earth. Now is the
pay attention to its rationale and its quest for empirical evidence.
deteriorating state of the world indicates that
with regard to sustaining the health of our society and the
environment, we have been bewildered since the days of Henry David
Thoreau. Advanced research suggests that this is simply because we omit
an important factor in our science and thinking: we usually do not, and
will not, incorporate the science of Natural Attraction Ecology so we
continue to suffer.
Natural Attraction Ecology is a holistic environmental process that
explores and implements nature's blend of the ways of natural systems
with the process by which we think. It is a blend that
Industrial Society teaches us to
Researchers in this science observe that by the time we are
have at least 53 natural senses that enable our thoughts and feelings
to make sense so we may live in balance with Planet Earth and each
other. However, to our loss, we have learned to overlook this
inheritance. For example, most of us in
Industrial Society have enjoyed a walk in the park or
other attractive experiences in nature that have relieved our stress and/or
cleared our thinking. Although we usually take this
restoration for granted, the reason it occurs is because humanity is
part of the web of life. In a natural area, gently connecting our
natural senses with the grace of nature's
balancing and purifying powers revitalizes
the energies of our psyche.
We seldom learn that our body and mind consist of ten times more cells
of other organisms than human cells; over 110 species live on our skin
alone, our genetic makeup includes plant and animal DNA and every 2-7
every atom in us is replaced by atoms from
Our thinking learns to omit that each atom almost entirely
consists of space filled with natural attraction energies, that we and the world, almost 100 percent, consist solely of space filled with natural attraction
energies. These attractions interconnect, bind and unify everything, including us. Our psyche registers them as 53 natural attraction senses. Natural attraction creates, sustains and recycles nature's perfection to health.
Throughout our lives the natural world becomes us and
we become it. We are obviously part of Earth's web-of-life community, a
seamless continuum of its flow through our body, mind and spirit.
The detrimental effects of our indoor lives
disconnecting us from
nature's regenerative ways clearly shows that the global ecosystem is
an important nurturing heart of our lives. What is also true is that in
be part of any system, one must be in communication with that
system. We seldom recognize that, as part of the global
ecosystem, without using words, we biologically inherit the ability to
communicate with it.
As noted above, Earth communicates with us, as part of itself,
through the intelligent sensibilities of at least 53 natural senses.
For example, our sense/sensation of thirst intelligently "turns on" to
attract us to drink water, to make the global water cycle flow through
and sustain us. In addition, when we have enough water, thirst
reasonably "turns-off" and, in balanced ways, attracts us to stop
drinking. Each of our additional 52 senses is a similar attraction
intelligence. Besides the sense of thirst, our love for
water, these senses include our love of community, reason and trust;
aroma, place and consciousness; color, taste and motion; belonging,
beauty, music and gravity along with 40 additional wordless natural
attractions. The web-of-life and we hold them in common while they hold
us together in unity.
Let us pause here a moment, look
at, or think of, a natural
scene, or some alive member of nature, and, with awe, recognize that it
has come into its perfection through eons of wordless natural attraction
relationships that register in our awareness.
Significantly, on average, Industrial Society's prejudicial need to
profit by excessively exploiting nature socializes us to disconnect
over 98 percent of our time, thinking and feeling from the satisfying
guidance and restorative sensory callings of nature.
because we have learned to ignore or obstruct the peaceful
and biologically balanced fulfillment of most of our 53 natural senses.
This reduces our natural ability to make sense.
Our extensive loss of rewarding nurturance from nature's perfection
leaves us wanting. We feel that we never have enough, or that we are enough. This
excessiveness and other problems. We become destructively greedy,
stressed, abusive, depressed and/or chemical and relationship dependent.
Nature knows how to sustain its optimums of life, diversity, balance,
purity and cooperation. It does this without producing garbage and with
a minimum of greed, abusiveness and isolation. Everything in nature
belongs, including us. As part of nature, because we have these natural
sensibilities we dream about living in their perfection.
In natural areas,
Natural Attraction Ecology helps us apply a psychological science of
nature-connected education, counseling and healing. It offers an
"ecopsychology" or “ecotherapy” for many
troubles that enables us to increase personal, social and
environmental well-being. Through it, independent of drugs or
hallucinogens, and as a modern tool for
shamans, we reasonably reconnect our thinking to the
healing flow of natural systems, in and around us. Backyard
or backcountry, we learn to make genuine sensory contact with authentic
systems. As exemplified by even a walk in the park, this empowers our
thinking to help nature recycle any garbage
or pollution that Industrial Society has dumped in our mind.
In 1936, a New York City elementary school policy insisted that Michael
Cohen, a left-handed, six-year old, first grader, write with his right
hand. The suppression of this youngster's left-handedness depressed him
and led to mild speech, posture, nail-biting and stress
disorders. Over time, as he worked to overcome these
difficulties, his skills led him to attain a Ph.D. in a blend of
outdoor environmental science, education, counseling and
people in contact with natural areas helped Cohen, in
1965, recognize Earth to be a living organism and that from it we are
with, not just five, but more than 53 natural senses that help us
sustain personal and global well-being (including a sense of
left-handedness for 10-15 percent of the population).
investigation of our natural-senses brought to light that most
of the personal, social and environmental disorders that we suffer -
including greed, stress, violence, abuse, depression and addiction -
result from an unreasonable, but profit making, prejudice against
nature in Industrial Society that we seldom acknowledge. This
prejudice holds an irrational disregard for nature's integrity and the
callings of the 53 natural senses that we inherit as part of nature. We
become less sensible and we weaken our well-being due to the absence of
the self-correcting and restorative ways of our natural senses.
To our loss, we
produce our greatest problems because we seldom learn
to think sensibly by respecting our natural senses and their
sensibilities. Instead, our unreasonable prejudice against nature
socializes us to
injuriously drive these senses out of our awareness and into our
subconscious where they lie hurt and frustrated.
To deal with this
phenomenon, Cohen produced a hands-on,
nature-connecting, sensitivity tool that helps us eliminate our
natural-sense deprivation. He demonstrated that his renewing educating,
counseling and healing with nature process is a sensory and spiritual
ecology that enables us think like nature's restorative processes
work. Readily available on-line, and in his newly released
Counseling and Healing With Nature," the process generates
genuine, nature-connected learning and relating that heals and renews
our injured natural senses. By learning to use the process, we become
resilient and sensitive; we build more sensible relationships and many
Counseling and Healing With Nature,"
environmentally-based psychology that helps our thinking co-create with
nature's self-correcting and regenerative ways. Because it is
an effective antidote and preventative for many dysfunctions, including
Nature Deficit Disorder, it enables us to increase well-being and
decrease our alarming prejudice against nature.
Whenever natural attractions connect our psyche with the web of life,
natural senses transform our disorders into constructive relationships.
The latter consist of the balance, cooperation and unconditional love
that nature shares with us to sustain life in peace.
cannot win the battle to increase the well-being of the web of life,
that includes our life, without strengthening our natural senses, our
emotional bonds with nature - for we will not fight to save
what we do not love."
J. Cohen's blend of Stephen
Jay Gould and Jalaluddin
Read, download or review Educating,
Counseling and Healing With
Nature online, at http://www.ecopsych.com/ksanity.html,
or obtain a review copy of the hard-copy edition through links on that
page. A free button that helps to catalyze nature-connected relationships is available at http://www.ecopsych.com/button.html
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
of the 1994 Distinguished World Citizen Award, Ecopsychologist Michael
J. Cohen, Ph.D. is a Director of the Institute of Global Education,
where he coordinates its Integrated Ecology Department and Project
NatureConnect. He also serves on the faculty of Portland State
University, Akamai University and West Coast University. Dr. Cohen
founded sensory environmental education outdoor programs independently
and for the National Audubon Society and Lesley University(AEI.) He
conceived the 1985 National Audubon Conference "Is the Earth a Living
Organism," and has been identified as a “maverick genius” or “the
reincarnation of Henry David Thoreau as a psychologist.” He
award-winning author of The
Web of Life Imperative, Reconnecting With Nature,
Einstein's World, and How
as well as an accomplished folk song artist and contra dancer who
presents traditional music programs for the U.S. National Park Service
and Elderhostel on San Juan Island, Washington.
CONTACT: www.ecopsych.com firstname.lastname@example.org
360-378-6313, Pacific Time Zone
REPORTS: below, on-line program participants share their results
from doing the nature-connecting activities found in The Web of Life Imperative
and Reconnecting With
Nature books. (Continued from Educating,
Counseling and Healing With Nature where "Webstrings"
are identified as the natural attraction strands of the web of life
that hold it, as well as each of its individual members, together)
For additional reports visit our Search
Engine and Survey of Participants
I wandered into the yard, asking permission
to work on activity 16. I was drawn to a patch of Daisies that have
gone by. The dry, black heads of the flowers were not visually
attractive. I wondered what it was that attracted me as I connected
with the plant. Pulling gentle, I felt in communication with the entire
plant and through it, the ground as well. My fingers rubbed some of the
black and it was revealed to me to be compacted seeds. As they spread
out in my hand, I realized it was the life inherent in them that was
attractive. I stopped at a patch of turnip and pulled on the low
plant. It was attached to a turnip about three inches in diameter just
below the surface of the soil. Again feeling connected to the earth
through my attraction to the plant, I found myself comfortably
squatting. I relaxed into the position and looked around; blue sky,
puffy white clouds, late season, mature greenery all around. One by one
the sounds around me popped out - a bird call, a woodpecker's tap, the
sound of a squirrel scratching. I went toward the scratching sound and
was drawn by a Moonflower plant that had climbed to the top of a tall
fence post holding up the deer fence near the vegetable garden. Pulling
on it gently, I was immediately in touch with the powerful attraction,
love, of this plant for the things to which it relied up for support.
There was gratitude and admiration; a communing of the so-called
inanimate and animate - the fence and fence post with the living
plant. And now I was joining that relationship by being there. Looking
at toward the top of the post, I communed with the sky and the dozen or
so, small white clouds.
I realized this powerful love
attraction underlies all things. It is hidden from us by the veils of
our emotional/cognitive material. This universal attraction contains
new life, old life, cycling life, dying and reemerging continually.
Everything collapse back to the akashic field, the zero-point field of
quantum physics only to reemerge as another expression of this
ubiquitous force of attractions that is constantly offering new shapes
I am able to connect with this
underlying attractive power of love. I can connect by turning my
attention and intention toward it, such as through RWN exercises. I can
simply step aside from the cognitive, emotional, verbal chatter
that serves to insulate my from feelingly knowing the one great
truth of the universe.
My self worth increases because I
expand back into the fullness of my being-ness by integrating and
transcending the dominant human qualities that are both our blessing
and are bane.
emphasis on shapes, particularly the egg shaped tree was
interesting. The connection you made with its meaning and your
work with the veterans, that of new beginnings is something I find
myself doing a lot of. In other words I often find myself looking
for signs in nature that reveal some type of connection to what is
going on in my life, a sign of hope, direction, understanding,
love. Without words I find this connection and I fight against my
socialization, which has taught me to ignore and downplay these
connections and natural senses. For, in exercising these
connections and senses I'm looked down upon, considered crazy, a nature
freak, a pot smoking hippie, or any other label one can find to pin on
me that deems me irrational, emotional, and unrealistic.
signs I find could be anything from the wind blowing towards me at the
right time when I'm extremely hot, a tree releasing its leaves on me as
I stand below it looking up at its beauty and wanting to feel its
leaves gently fall on me, a tree moving more so than any other tree in
the area because I'm looking at it and finding its energy
amazing. These are the signs I look for in nature and encourage
others to see and feel as well.
you in advance for allowing the Nature in me to follow the natural
attraction for sleep rather than forcing a time bound commitment for
the course activity completion...even spring comes late in some years.
I took a hike with husband, Pete, around Indian Creek
Reservoir in the Sierra Nevada's. Because we've had no measurable rain
since May the water was very low. We were able to walk close to the
waters edge as the wind blew and the sun shone on us from a clear blew
sky. Mountains and Pines and Rock formations surrounded us creating a
basin of security and a container for Love. As we walked I switched
between consciously saying "Unity" and just walking and enjoying. I
became aware of the difference which was not immediately available
because natural environments are usually attractive. I began to sense
the difference as one of focus and an increased caring and connection
with all I saw...the Light and Wind on the Water, the Geese wary of our
approach, the Killdeer peeping and running ahead of us, the wind on my
face, the laughter of the Boy Scout group, the soft Earth of of a
recently receded shoreline beneath my feet, the Redtail Hawk which
allowed a close viewing, the Stellar Blue Jay who announced our
presence loudly, and the Golden Mantle Chipmunks that scurried for
safety among the rocks. As I repeated "Unity" I became One with all
Creation...I belonged. When I walked without "unity consciousness" I
lacked the focused attention much like driving and suddenly having no
recollection as to how I got to this place.
2. Three most important things I learned from this activity: To gain
the deepest connection with Nature I must intentionally engage.
Nature's community is constantly engaged and aware of new introductions
(me)into it's environment. My enjoyment increases in direct proportion
to my focused attention
3. Three G/G statements: I
connect with all creation by choosing to do so. Conscious engagement
enriches my experience of the natural world. I am a member of a unified
community regardless of my awareness of this fact.
How would you feel having G/G ability taken away: The quality of my
life would be greatly diminished...I might require medication to remain
stress free/sane...(which would be totally insane and detrimental based
on drug companies own admission)!
5. How does this
activity enhance your sense of self-worth? Your trustfulness of NIAL
and NIALS? Because I know though experience I am accepted into the
Community of Nature a desire to increase my conscious participation is
activated.This is a Natural Attraction that I trust will continue to
evolve in self-worth and benefit all creation.
Which authority or person, if any does this activity identify or
re-educate inside or outside of you? This activity re-educates my
ability to focus attention at a deeper level of consciousness.
Nature's Maverick Genius
1. A general description of the activity: After a long drive back
from Sacramento through the forest of the Sierra Nevada mountain range
I impulsively stopped at a favorite attraction, Cave Rock on Lake
Tahoe. After a long drive to stop was welcomed to stretch and sit on
the rocks at waters edge about 2 hours before sunset. As I faced west I
gained permission from this place to begin the RWN activity. I began
looking out over the sunlit water that led directly toward me. As I
released labels I became increasingly aware of light, dark, movement,
pressure only as pure sensation. The shimmering light became a response
of pure delight. I became the Light the Water the Wind the observer as
I let go of labels and self-identification. When I asked, "Who am I
with out my name?" I felt the scene say, OBSERVER, Godling, OBSERVER!
WE ARE AN UNSEPARATED SEA OF ONENESS! My heart opened fully in
gratitude for this profound experience.
2. Three most
important things I learned from this activity: Quote from RWN, "Stories
are not nearly as trustable as what we experiece in the immediate
moment." When I let go of labels I merge into the landscape. Nature has
the ability to quickly refresh my weariness (sans caffeine).
3. Three G/G statements: Connection with Nature through direct nameless
contact is an enjoyable path to wellbeing. When I fully engage
awareness of my senses without preconceptions of labels my experience
is enhanced. When I release labels I am capable of experiencing Nature
at the level of the Mystic.
4. How would you feel
having G/G ability taken away: I would have returned home exhausted
from the long drive never knowing how easily physical and mental
weariness could be dissipated.
5. How does this
activity enhance your sense of self-worth? Your trustfulness of NIAL
and NIALS? Well, you can only imagine how your self-worth would be
enhanced if Nature called you "Godling"!LOVE lifts the fog shrouded
labeled world; what is revealed is Magic.
authority or person, if any does this activity identify or re-educate
inside or outside of you? This activity profoundly nurtured and
re-newed my old brain ability to purely Sense the World.
did the activity on a very quiet lake early in the morning so there
were less distractions. While gaining permission a fish jumped
out of the water some distance out from me so i once again asked
natures consent and guidance. I was immediately attracted to the
water, no waves, dark, cool and just smooth as silk. Ducks
were gathered on the beach as if they were having a picnic, lily pads
were sticking out as if they were watching the area also, a
lone squirrel was playing in the wooded area next to me, I thought
how fun it would be to jump from tree to tree and run on the branches
all day, climbing and searching for food. I couldn't keep
focused on just one attraction, attractions were calling from all
directions, within that short time I counted 7 fish that jumped up and
back down into the water. The sky was a pale blue with fluffy
clouds and I could here birds in the distance. It sure is
amazing that this quiet little lake was so alive and filled with
life and I am grateful that I took the time to connect with
nature. I just want so many others to stop and re-connect with
nature. I felt people were missing out and I was getting my own
personal show. With all that was going on it was still very
peaceful. I learned from this experience that nature provides
everything, I also realized that nothing is unwanted, I tried to
remember this when I would have a connection with dry grass or
weeds. Everything has a purpose, everything is an attraction and
lives off of other attractions.
that's what mainstream folks are missing....all these "new" traditional
programs seem to be tailored towards getting kids to learn new-brain
stuff about the environment and conservation and recycling. Teachers
and parents can coax kids outside to play, and do experiments, and make
nature rubbings, and play nature games, and pet a few animals in
petting zoos.......all to learn about Nature, BUT...... What they all
seem to be missing is the FEELING that we are CONNECTED with all that
is Nature. There is no knowledge or talk of communicating with Nature -
of listening to learn about OURSELVES......of 53 sense intelligence. It
all seems to be geared towards head-stuff, not body stuff. Do teachers
let kids go outside and roll around in the mud and let the earth teach
them nonverbally? Heck no - don't get dirt in my classroom......no dirt
on the rug, I just vaccumed - it's all still sterile, agenda based
learning. What they need education on is HOW to create moments that let
Earth teach....not just facts, but emotionally..... things like respect
and cooperation and the ways of harmony. They need to awaken conscious
awareness that Nature speaks to THEM....that some of the best
experiences outdoors is when they are not "in charge" of orchestrating
the experience.....that just showing up in open expectation is what
creates the magic.
Oh yes, we still have a long way to go.
That's not to say that this step is not important, but it really lacks
the key to "real" understanding and connection.
This was a surprisingly stimulating and pleasant
activity for me. After a consent conversation, I took a tug
on a long cottonwood tree branch that was hanging out over the
path. More like I hung on and swayed with the branch, watching
the upper limbs sway in the breeze. My arms were an extension of
the branch, and I could see the strong yet yielding fibers inside, made
to withstand movement of almost any intensity. Even the smaller
stub of a branch I was clutching on to was so strong and made a good
hold. It felt fine for me to do this without causing any harm to
the tree. Maybe even serving to stimulate and strengthen.
Could it receive my energy as I received its? I was integrated
into the being of that tree for those few moments and was entirely
grateful for the possibility of being enriched and educated by hanging
and swaying on that mighty cottonwood.
On the path, there were
some tips of branches with yellow leaves still attached. I
guessed at how ready they were to come off, having served their initial
purpose of aiding in the process of photosynthesis, on to more
usefulness of breaking down and returning to the earth. Before I
pulled on the leaves, I noticed how the very tips of these pencil thin
branches were still newly green and supple. A gentle pull ---
perhaps even a puff of breath would have done it -- and the leaves
peeled off without any resistance. If I hadn't pulled them
off in this activity there would have been a gradual drying and then
they would have simply not had any glue left to keep them attached.
third experience: even though it was late in the morning and the
sun was fully up over the mountain, the moon was in place -- pale but
present. I wondered at the possibility of it pulling on me.
Could I overcome earth's gravity and, like the tide, be lifted up even
slightly up off of the earth? Did I feel a lightness in my
legs? Was my face even a nose-length closer to the face of the
moon? It was just a moment of playfulness, but the connection I
experienced with the moon was valued and I was grateful for the dance
for as long as it lasted.
Thank you, all of the nature that I
walked among this morning. Thank you for teaching me how a part
of me you are. You are constant. I am fickle. You are
patient and always available. I am caught up in my own
importance. I envy your ego-less-ness. I learn that being
still with nature gives me back my own center. I learn that my
new brain is eager for the stimulation and education that is
available. I want to continue to raise my awareness that, by my
actions, I may influence others to care for the earth, to appreciate,
to be mindful and concious of their affect on our surroundings.
what a beautiful September day!!! I walked over to the close-by
park and was delighted to find not a single human soul there.
This so rarely happens at this park. When I thought about it
later though it did make me a bit sad, especially knowing that there is
no school in session today at Denver public schools. Does that
mean all the kids are inside playing video games?
I still enjoyed the peace and quiet for sure. I was feeling happy
and that has not been happening much this past week so I delighted in
that. It is not a giddy happy but just finally a feeling of
letting go, a feeling of trust that everything is working out as it is
I asked permission to plop my seat
(and my blanket) on a spot of grass. I may not have listened as
intently as I meant to, for I landed on a stick. What does that
mean? Pick a different spot? I didn’t…I just moved a bit.
enjoyed going along on the nature trail as I was feeling peaceful and
at ease. Man, it was just such a pleasant moment, and a pleasant
day. I had read the beginning of the chapter the night
before. And now I see I highlighted nothing from that reading.
I stepped out of my vehicle, I noticed a beautiful
tree filled with brilliant orange and red leaves. I walked up
to the tree and thanked her for her brilliance this day for she
reminded me that fall was upon us. My husband and I started on the
trail and I didn't feel as welcome as I usually feel. We walked the
path that took us by the river and stopped at this very old tree on
the river's bank. I sat with the tree for a while.I tried to
tap into the spirit and the essence of this tree and I felt so
much sadness. I continued on and noticed someone had mowed down alot of
the beautiful plants and it looked like the path had been
disturbed in some way. I asked again for permission to visit
and this time it was a no. Suddenly we were inindated with
mosquitos which validated for us that we were not supposed to stay.
visited Cold Harbor Trail. I was welcomed by a chipmunk, said
thank you and I asked permission to visit. I felt the forest open
up to me with so much love so I continued. While on my journey
through the forest I had many natural attractions."I know my inherent
sensativities in natural attractions are alive and well because I
enjoyable sense and feel the beauty of purple flowers, the
freedom of the yellow butterlies, excitement of the chipmunks, and
how refreshing the cool breeze feels on my body today." As I
walked, while hearing the loud chirps of the chipmunks echoing in
the woods, I stopped in silence and asked again if the forest welcomed
me. Just then a bird flew on the tree next to me and sang the most
beautiful melodie, I had ever heard. I knew that the forest had again
gave me permission to continue. A lightening bug had joined my
husband, sat on the hood of his jacket. In the distance, I could
see a line of beauiful colors radiating off the trees and I was so
grateful. Through the field we walked where we were again visited by
our friends, the dragonflies and I felt so happy. As we drew closer to
the end of our walk, my husband picked up the lightening bug for his
hood, thanked him for joining us and placed him
safely on this big quartz filled rock.Fresh acorns
filled the ground we walked on and reminded me why the
chipmunks were so excited.It is harvest time! It is also a
time to honor our trees, that which provide us oxygen, that which
provide wood for our homes, that which provides nourishment and homes
for our wildlife.
10. I fully agree.
I learned- 1) Granting permission gives us the opportunity
to show honor for all our relationships 2) Inherent in us is a
sensibility, an ancient wisdom that guides us towards
nature. 3) When we totally immerse ourselves in what is
natural to us, our senses take over.
KeyWords- Honor all creatures big and small
Nature brings out our inner beaty
"In nature's whisper is where our truth lies"
Have a blessed nature-connect day!
I started my walk, I was so happy to see 2 fawns standing quietly
in a clearing just off the woodland trail .... I paused and asked them
if I could enter their lovely home .... they remained relaxed, and
as they continued browsing, I felt their calm, gentle nature welcome
me, and I thanked them and wished them health and safety as they
grow. I love the sounds of the local wild residents and
thank them for being just who they are ~ friendly chickadees
chattering, a flurry of goldfinches now beginning to trade the bright
yellow feathers of summer for the subdued colors they will have
throughout the winter ... and I am reminded that change is coming
....and my mind wanders to how hardy these tiny year-round residents
are to live amidst the winter winds and snows and freezing temperatures
.... I shake off the cold feeling of those winter days to come,
for today holds the beauty of a warm, colorful fall day. I breathe
in my gratitude for the warm sun on my face, the bright colorful maple
leaves painting the day in reds and oranges and yellows, the
freshness of the forest air around me, and the wildlife whose home I am
As I seem now to be following a deer trail, I am
drawn to a large grove of magnificent huge old trees ~ I feel
I am entering one of the most beautiful and sacred
of sanctuaries. Here, there is the hush of silence, and
I feel I have entered someone's home. I feel the soft layers of pine
needles beneath my feet as they quiet my steps, and I breathe in the
scent of pure earth and the cool depths of wisdom shared among these
trees. I ask permission to wander among them, and there, tucked
in the elbow of a branch of an ancient hemlock tree, right next
to its massive trunk, is a tiny sawet owl, and I am humbled
and grateful to share the air between us. I am honored to even have
seen him sitting there, his camouflage making him one with the tree
bark. How often I have looked to find one, yet,
unexpectedly, he is here ! I barely breathe so as not to
disturb him, and I thank him for being and wish him well ~ I wonder if
he is resting on his migration path ... I have often gone on owl
watches at spring migration time when hundreds pass through certain
areas. I always love owls. I pause to join in the solitude
and to see what other treasures I could so easily miss if I am here,
but not present.
As I now sit peacefully on the forest
floor, near, but not too near, the little owl, I am attracted to
lay upon the soft bed of pine needles and look up at the very tops of
the towering trees above me and around me ~ and I feel so
small and so protected. A few rays of sunlight find their way in
to light the darkness as insects buzz in the warming light.
The floor is soft; I could easily fall asleep here
:-) I feel part of this area as I am part of this earth and
it is part of me. Thank you . Thank you for
everything. I am content to just be here and grateful to be part
of it all, and for it all to be part of me. Thank you.
I sit up, I look beneath a tree near me and see some deer
droppings, and from my place at ground level, I can see some
indentations on the forest floor where they have slept. I imagine
that the deer find this an inviting place for rest and shelter from
storms, and perhaps we share the same protective feelings of the trees.
It feels timeless here in this place with such a very deep quiet. Do
the deer hear this quiet ? I have craved quiet lately and
realize it is perhaps the quiet of these places that has drawn me
here. I lay down again and become deer and feel contentment to be
part of it all ....
Looking around from my ground level
view, I can see an area where the sun seems begins
to brighten ~ it draws me to leave the seclusion of this
peaceful sanctuary, so I give a farewell thanks ~ I will follow the
inviting light and see where it leads ... I see how the warm
welcoming light and the peaceful serenity of a darkly
shaded woodland are both parts of inviting and welcoming
As I follow the light and the
terrain to see where it leads, I bid farewell again to that adorable
little sawet owl and this cozy place and shall picture the
deer protected and warm here when the winter snows blow. But for
now, I am excited as I think it is leading me to descend into
a very steep ravine and the creek she holds. I absolutely
love to walk through old growth forests and
creeks and ravines ~ I find this one is heavy with
mosses and downed trees and mist. I pause on my steep descent as I
feel I have entered another world. I sit amidst the soft
mosses and fallen trees, and a curious chickadee flits and sits near me
who I'm sure is wondering what I am doing here. I am clearly
not on a deer trail to the creek ... no one should descend here
! Joie, I don't know what you were thinking ! It is so
beautiful, and the mist I had not noticed before gives it an
other-worldly feeling. Below me a lovely creek winds through this
deep ravine. I look around for an easier route and see a
turkey feather in the distance, and then another ... oh good, I'll
follow them ! Thank you thank you !
Oh this is much
easier as I now see some easy traverses created by the deer.
Thank you turkeys and deer for your guidance. I step in their
tracks and become them as they descend seeking the waters of the
creek. What a beautiful wonderful place, as I feel
I am now the rambling creek looking up at the steep earth and
trees above me. We are the same, together in this
place. I feel in balance with the world here. In this
ancient place of old growth forests and it's treasures, I feel its
balance and great wisdom. Being in this place is a joy and reward
in itself ~ and my being here is perfect for me in this moment ~ and I
am grateful to find a welcome and a home here. Thank you thank
you. I love you.
learned:wandering in nature without expectation opens a world of
possibilities and nature will always take care of me if I follow her
and listen.It is easy to miss what is right in front of me, so I must
be present and open to receiving, not just mindlessly here.
am a person who loves to wander and follow my attractions as nature
reveals them, who trusts nature to help me and who is so very grateful
that my new brain and my old brain are happy for me to trust nature and
And I am person thankful for the Summer Tides ! Hugs, Jane
I struggle when I think of the occurrences of natural disasters such as
volcano eruptions, avalanches, earthquakes, tsunamis, hurricanes,
tornadoes, monsoons, droughts, etc. which defiantly wreak havoc on many
a healthy ecosystem. Are they bettering the Earth as a whole
system or organism?".
I can relate to this
but would like to share a perception that helped ease my anxiety over
this subject. It can be "seen" in the minds eye as destruction if
you so wish or it can be seen as a cleansing birth. Do we not
cause destruction with our buildings in places we are fully aware
belong to Nature? Take Galveston Texas for example where the
entire Island was wiped out and only one house left standing.
I saw the photo of this event I saw that Nature had reclaimed it's land
and washed it clean. Will the people listen to Nature? No,
most will rebuild. I also live on the coast and am aware that at
any time Nature could reclaim this land too. I personally wish to
move to higher ground with the climate change and rising sea levels, it
is inevitable that Nature will eventually reclaim this land, we have
built massive condo complexes right on the waters edge. Would
they call it a Natural disaster or can it be mans ignorance that this
land (the Island) is Nature's barrier and belongs to her in the first
place? Volcanoes although I have never seen one is also a birth
when it erupts..
We humans get ill from toxins in our
food, the plastic, the everyday products we use; make us sick.
Sometimes we wretch, have a fever, break out in hives. Since the
Earth is alive, is it too far fetch to think that she too gets ill from
the toxins man has created? Plus, Earth has to try and maintain a
delicate balance. Does the Earth not at times wretch, have a
fever, or have allergic reactions? Yet again, will man heed the
warning signs? Since positive energy breeds positive and negative
energy breeds negative; should we say that we collectively do have the
power to reverse our destructive ways, and heal the wounds we have
inflicted on Earth before the cancer spreads? Can't we find a
solution to ease her discomfort? We do have the power to change
our destructive "habits" but Earth will always need to cleanse just as
any other living being cleanses also. Without the cleansing we
might be living in a festering hot land . Can you imagine if you
never cleansed your body? Ooh, gross. Can you imagine what
it would be like if Earth never cleansed itself?
I am up
with the rising sun and my mind is unpolluted from the days forthcoming
events or yesterdays memories. Just here in the moment and I give
you my most pure thoughts. I hope it may serve you to be at ease
with the fact that Nature also has cleansing cycles..
May the Blessings of this day be yours to discover,
Organic Psychology by doing it.
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