Getting out in nature is therapy, a form of self-care. People often say that they need to "go be in nature." Where is this nature? Is it the mountains, tall trees a sheltering canopy overhead? Is it the violent waves crashing against a battered rocky shoreline? Perhaps "nature" is the expansive park in your town square, home to childhood games and Sunday picknicks.
It just as well could be that valiant sprig of green jutting toward the sky through cracked cement slabs bent on holding it down, on suffocating it. Though that shoot may well be pulled, cut away, or die from lack of root space, where there is one grass-root seed, there are bound to be more. Even if one seedling perishes, it is intrinsically connected to others of its ilk adding to the vast living web spreading out before, around, and within humanity. People often see themselves as removed from this "nature," but by virtue of our very existence, we are part of it, as it is part of us. Living in the modern age of technology, with our computers, video games, and cell phones, we might not get outside, exploring the forests as much as our species once did, but we are part of the so-called natural world nonetheless.
It is this erroneous belief of separation from nature that appears to be the root cause for so much stress for so many. Humans seem to think that nature is both a thing you can have, posses, and a thing to go visit, far removed from daily existence. Does being in un-polluted, or probably more accurately, less-polluted regions often help calm the mind? Yes, studies have shown that getting out in the sunshine, breathing clean air, and eating food not laden with chemicals has vastly beneficial impacts on the body. Then again, any situation in which poisons are removed from a living organism's environment would likely be met with beneficial results. This does not, however infer that this well-being is entirely disparate from humanity's intrinsic nature. Instead, this illustrates our planet's interconnectedness. If we protect the Earth, we protect ourselves. If for no other reason than this tendency toward self-preservation, it is humanity's responsibility to care for our terrestrial home. The Earth has existed for eons and will continue long after humanity has been extinguished, should it come to that. Let's not give mummy dearest another reason, shall we? She's taken care of us for all of humanity's lifetimes, it's time we return the favor. Even just something small like re-using your water bottles would go toward helping the planet. And really, we need all the help we can get.
Till next time,