Saturday, May 4, 2019

The Soul of Nature

"The land is sacred. These words are at the core of your being. The land is our mother, the rivers our blood. Take our land away and we die. That is, the Indian in us dies." ~Mary Brave Bird
Spring arrived with an explosion of color here in Southern California, gracing the landscape with brilliant hues of yellow, orange, and purple. Walking in a nearby canyon I rediscovered the magnificence of local medicinal plants growing in abundance. The rains have restored streams that flow through previously dry creek beds, reminding us of ancient earth rhythms. I am in awe of her beauty.

At the same time much of humanity continues to live in unaltered ways, littering the earth with materials that are not biodegradable, continuing dependence on fossil fuels and living in unsustainable ways. Climate change and global warming are a reflection of humanity's disconnection with ourselves. Mother Earth is inviting us to go into our hearts, seek balance within, and reconnect with Nature as a spiritual teacher. We are spiritual beings and the mind-body-spirit connection can be restored when we align with our Mother.

In every community there are places that can be reclaimed and restored as open spaces and community gardens. Restoring our yards and open spaces with trees and plants that are native to the area brings back the local ecosystem, including native wildlife. Grassroots organizations and nature-loving communities are doing this throughout our country. In this era of political ignorance and denial, we can be part of the change, of the solution by care-taking our neighborhoods and consciously restoring the natural habitats where we live.

When I was living on the property in Laguna Beach I learned a great deal about balance and how nature collaborates. Native plant species growing on the land invited birds to return and the birds spread seeds. Snakes kept the rodent population down and birds of prey balanced the snakes. I watched coyote, quail, and raccoon parents teach their young about the wild places to seek food and find shelter. I even had the privilege of observing a mountain lion walk the hillside in the canyon where I lived.

Get out into nature. If you are lucky enough to live in a wild place, spend time observing and sitting in sacred silence. For those who live in the middle of a bustling city, choose to take yourself for a long walk in nearby natural places at least once a week to restore your inner balance. Walk mindfully. Sit with a tree. Go bird watching. Meditate with the soothing rhythms of the ocean waves. Nature is a healing tonic for the soul and the more you connect with her the more your own inner peace and balance will be restored.
"Keep close to Nature's heart... and break clear away, once in awhile, and climb a mountain or spend a week in the woods. Wash your spirit clean." ~John Muir
Blessings of peace love and light,
Gogo Gretchen
May you find a harmony between your soul and your life ~ John O'Donohue

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