Continued from Page
"It is difficult to get people
to understand something when their salary (or
another reward) depends upon them
not understanding it."
- Upton Sinclair
Our troubles remain because our society rewards us for fighting
an undeclared war on nature. Our thinking gets paid, and otherwise
rewarded, to conquer ecosystems and webstrings for profit and
approval. Because conscious multisensory contact with nature's
lifeweb is not practiced, our thinking loses contact with the
truths that it needs to recover from the absence of these truths.
That is why, in our nature estranged society, you learn the Natural
Systems Thinking Process by doing its reconnecting activities,
not just talking about them. (6).
"One touch of Nature makes the
whole world kin"
The activities enable us to plug our 53 natural senses directly
into their webstring attractions in nature and energize. This
recharge nurtures the web's supportive string signals further
into our consciousness, thinking and being. As we learn to feel
and trust our senses, we increase our sensibility, balance and
wellness. We feel better, more energetic, and our outlooks and
relationships improve (7).
Anybody who has had a good experience in nature has momentarily
enjoyed this phenomenon.
"The beginning of wisdom is to
call things by their right name"
Through the Natural Systems Thinking Process each our natural
senses is identified by their right name, "Webstring"
Definition: "A seamless sensory attraction string of the
global web of life community within and around us." Webstrings
feelingly help us bring nature into our awareness and thinking
at will. No offense intended, but to call the webstrings anything
else, as we are trained to do, (senses, feelings, God, instincts,
needs, drives, spirit, desires, blessings, beliefs, subjective,
bias, angels, etc.,) often disconnects our thinking from the
web of life and its balanced ways. That disconnection is the
psychological heart of our insurmountable personal and global
Making space in our lives to do activities that reconnect
us with nature has proven to produce responsible relationships
you learn how to do a reconnecting activity you own it and can
teach it. Today, globally, the internet empowers people to enjoy
webstring connected consciousness through distance learning activities,
courses and communication (3)
"The laws of the universe are not
indifferent, but are forever on the side of the most sensitive."
- Henry David Thoreau
Earth and its people are at risk because our excessive stress
fuels greed, illness and disorders. Conscious webstring attraction
connections reduce our destructive stress. They bring us to our
senses. Along with empirical studies, thousands of email journal
entries, such as the following, validate the process (see
some others below):
"This morning I was battling the
remnants of some depression I had been feeling about my family
and life "stuff". I was doing the sensory attraction
activity, looking around enjoying the day, the breeze, the sun,
the beautiful trees and the sounds of singing birds. In a flash
of good feeling, I realized that these feelings are what is so
good about living on earth at this time. It was enough, if for
no other reason, to be here, to experience the beauty of this
planet. This was a major breakthrough for me, because I battle
the reason for being here quite a bit in my recovery work. This
happened before noon, and it is now 6 pm, and I still feel great!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
I wanted to share this because I am so happy!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
We learn only 15% of what we read but 90% of what we teach.
If you want to personally and globally come into balance, teach
what you have read here: Thoughtful, shared sensory reconnecting
activities produce conscious webstring connections with Earth
that help us build balanced relationships. The sensory webstring
of reason demands that we engage in the activities. (3,
"I know what I read here holds
benefits for me and makes perfect sense. I also know my history,
I'll not become involved in it until I'm forced to. What has
so stupidly addicted me to my apathy and its discontents?
best way to further gain from this and other natural systems
thinking process activities is to enroll in the short, online, Orientation
DOES THIS MAKE SENSE TO YOU? When you
call each of your senses and feelings a webstring,*
webstrand attraction* or
web love* you help your life and all of life improve.
(Remember: "The beginning of wisdom is to call things by
their right name." - Confucius)
your addictions to calling your sensuous experiences "senses"
and "feelings" prevent you from enjoying and teaching
the wisdom of knowing them as attraction
the web of life?
(Option: Return to Page 1 )
EXAMPLES OF SENSORY RECONNECTING THROUGH THE NATURAL
SYSTEMS THINKING PROCESS (10):
RE: Materialism and environmental
Participant A: "As I continued this special forest activity,
I found myself attracted to the various songs of the birds and
then gradually to the various stones and nuts and shells in the
path. I would stop in the path, pick up the stone, admire its
beauty and then feel clearly called to return it to its appropriate
place. So often other times I have felt I needed to put it in
my pocket and carry it home. Now, through the activity, I had
a real sense of appreciating each rock, each shell, each leaf
in its place for the time I was there. I felt suddenly freed
from the need to possess something. I had a growing sense of
letting things be and to just be still and glory in the fullness
of the moment. As I allowed myself to connect, appreciate, thank
and move on with so much of what surrounded me, I felt a letting
go into being present. In this transformation, I began to feel
I was part of the scene more, not my other self that needed to
possess. I learned that I do not need to possess something to
have the joy of it."
Participant B: Your
earlier questioning of the work place sounds so familiar but
we have our cultural story that needs to maintain in our society.
I find daily that I am changing things and getting back to more
basic life choices. I think each little one counts. These changes
feel so good. I find that I want less material things these days.
RE: Peace and Support
"I was never taught to
ask permission to relate to people or the environment. I just
take that for granted, as we all do. However, this activity required
my senses to learn how to ask an attractive tree covered area
for its consent for me to walk through it. The area continued
to feel attractive, but something changed. It was the first time
in my life that I totally felt safe. It felt like Earth's energies
were in charge of my life, not me. It gave me a wonderful feeling
of having more power to be myself. I felt in balance with nature
and the people here because I could distinctly feel their energies
consenting to support me. I never experienced nature and people
that way before. It was like a powerful law protected not only
my life, but all of life. I felt very secure and nurtured as
I walked under those trees. I learned that when I seek permission
from the environment and people I gain energy and unity, I belong."
RE: Chemical Dependencies
"I want to share with the group that I feel different from
when I started this course. I have always struggled with chemical
addictions, and these last few weeks, I find I hardly have cravings
at all anymore. At times I do, but then I can go into nature,
right outside my backdoor, and feel a connection that is real.
I have been through therapy as well as currently working a twelve
step program, and I feel these nature activities have really
helped me, more than I have words for. This is definitely an
attraction, I cannot label it, I do not have words for it, yet
I know in my heart something has changed."
RE: Global intelligence
"My how my mind does chatter
with words that can mislead me. When I make contact with nature
and think with nature's intelligence, it guides me with a wisdom
that helps me keep in balance. The contact is non-verbal because
nature does not communicate with words. As I worked through the
Introductory Course, I began to use the Reconnecting With Nature
book's methodology to quiet my mind. As I went through the activities
I began to sense a subtle, but perceptible, shift in my ability
to attain a non-verbal awareness. Then one day, as I was doing
one of the activities that asks us to "jam" the verbal
mind with a word ("unity" in my case) I suddenly connected,
WHAM, there it was - non-verbal awareness. No naming, no concepts,
just being. What a relief! It didn't last long but it did change
my life. Since then I have extended my abilities to just be.
Now my "mind chatter" is only a murmur when I ask it
to be. This has opened up experiences so far beyond anything
I even dreamed of a few years ago."
RE: Healing and Wellness
"The activity helped me
become aware of my attraction to the crescent moon as it hung
over two hills near my home. Soon, its mellow glow, framed by
peaks and trees, embraced me in a wordless, ancient primordial
scene. Timeless power, peace and unity swept me up. I just wanted
to stay in that state of awe, I felt in balance with all of reality.
I was simply "BEING." No tension, no pressing goal,
just truly belonging to the global community. This natural energy
captured my stress laden pulse and seduced it to the rhythms
of Earth. The sleeping disorder I have battled all my adult life
dissolved in this power. For the first time in decades, I gently
fell asleep after dark and arose shortly after dawn. I celebrated
the breakthrough and I thanked nature. I thanked the activity,
too, for it lets me reconnect whenever I choose."
1. Cohen, 1999, http://www.peacewithearth.org.
2. Cohen, 1997, Reconnecting
With Nature: Finding Wellness through restoring your bond
with the Earth, Ecopress, Corvallis, Oregon.
3. Cohen, 1994, The Natural Systems Thinking Process http://www.ecopsych.com
4. Cohen 1995, Counseling and Educating With Nature http://www.ecopsych.com/counseling.html
5. Cohen 1993, Well Mind, Well Earth,
Roche Harbor, WA, World Peace University Press
6. Cohen, 1994, Courses and Activities,
7. Cohen, 1996, Study and Survey of Participants http://www.ecopsych.com/survey.html
8. Cohen, 1996 Nature Psychology Courses and Degrees
10. Cohen, 1997, Journalized Findings,
11. Beyond Addicted Thinking:
do this activity
12. The Global Wellness and Unity
About the Author:
Applied Ecopsychologist Michael J.
Cohen, Ed.D. founded and coordinates Project NatureConnect
and the Natural Systems Thinking Process. They are continuing
education workshops, distance learning courses and degree programs
of Greenwich University, Portland state University and the Institute
of Global Education. Dr. Cohen chairs the Department of Applied
Ecopsychology/Integrated Ecology on San Juan Island, Washington.
For 33 years, he has founded and directed degree granting environmental
outdoor education programs for the Trailside Country School,
Lesley College, and the National Audubon Society. His 8 books
and 56 articles include the award winning Connecting With
Nature: Creating Moments that let Earth Teach which is included
in his 1997 self-guiding book Reconnecting With Nature
and Well Mind, Well Earth: 97 Environmentally Sensitive Activities
for Stress Management, Spirit and Self-esteem. Dr. Cohen
is the recipient of the Distinguished World Citizen Award.