My relationship with the natural world - Sacred Paths Cont...

Srucara's picture

I really enjoyed the class experience in Morris Woods. It was a pleasure to be surrounded by mostly plants for an hour and a half and there was such a noticble difference in environment and my experience of the way environment affects each of us as I walked out of the Morris Woods and into the English house parkinglot. My favorite aspect was the final activity - the partnered trust activity. I had explored a beech tree, without sight, and felt the vines of ivy that surrounded the right half of the beech tree and the bare, elephant skin that surrounded the other half. This tree was just perfect, I could wrap my arms around it and my hands could still meet on the other side. After rachelr carefully guided me about 10 meters away, I only had to spin once before I realized exactly which tree I had spent the past few minutes with. I wondered why that is so - how is it I could have known that instantly? As if one is recognizing an old friend, even without ever having seen him/her visually before. I wanted to apply this once more to my site and see what I found.

The labyrinth is surrounded by trees and the one immediately next to it is large and has swooping branches. Today I decided to spend time with this tree and further explore my relationship to trees and plants in general. I pressed my face to the cool, gray bark and inhaled the smell of damp, moist earth. My arms could barely wrap entirely around the mid-section of the tree and I touched the wide, thick branches that extended upwards and then outwards. With regards to connection to the land, I find that in indigenous traditions and even in my own culture, there is an emphasis on respect for the natural world. In some native traditions, after an animal is hunted or a plant is used, it is offered gratitude and is used respectfully and with respectful intentions. Corn/Maize is intensely spiritual in indigenous Mexican traditions - as they consider themselves children of the corn. In Hinduism, the maintainer of the universe - Vishnu - had incarnated as Krishna many thousands of years ago and was a cow herder. Cows are sacred in Hinduism. With regard to my relationship to the natural world I am beginning to find seeds of greater respect and kindness towards plants in myself. And as such, I left my site today, with an offering of gratefulness to my new natural friend. 

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