Sunday, August 26, 2012

Communing with Nature

This weekend, my family and I are spending time at our cabin in the woods. We're very lucky to have this retreat space and seek solitude here every month or two. Packing for the trip is always cumbersome, but once we're on the road, I feel the shift inside immediately. I naturally want to exhale deeply, letting go of any held tension. In 3 hours we are among beautiful redwoods and other evergreens. Instinctively, I lengthen my inhalations. I take in the splendor not only through my senses, but allow it to penetrate my entire being.

The air is different here - cleaner (unless there is a forest fire.)  In Eastern philosophies, it is believed that the quality of our vital energy (prana and qi) is made up of the energy we inherit from our parents and also absorbed from the food we eat and the air we breathe. Certain geographies have more refined qi.  Of course in our culture we are concerned with avoiding pollution. But most people do not realize that we are constantly benefiting from nature by simply communing with trees, water, and other natural landscapes. We do not need to take a Feng Shui course, though that can certainly help! Our health can improve by simply getting out more in natural environments and letting our cells soak up this invisible nectar.

My family has made weekend vacations to our cabin a necessity. We value the energetic gift from the land and also the quality time spent together.  Yesterday my son and I walked around our property collecting sticks, watched a woodpecker work on a diseased tree, played construction with a new cement truck toy, and I made a lot of progress with a sewing project. Today, we played around outside again, soaked up rays at Alpine Lake, and  I was able to do more yoga and qi gong than usual.  Tomorrow we will make a big breakfast, play outside a bit more, then clean and pack up. Simplicity is nourishing.

As I conclude this post, my son and husband are slumbering soundly nearby.  I'm being serenaded by hundreds of crickets. Hopefully soon, I will be lulled to sleep by their peaceful song. 

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