Did you get to celebrate Earth Day this weekend? Many people simply get outside and enjoy nature, while others take steps to protect and preserve the Earth by doing things like conserving energy, cleaning up their communities and recycling, or even working hard to help pass legislation that will help curb the effects of climate change.
For this Earth Day, I want to plant a seed and encourage you to go outside for some Niksen time in nature and “bathe” in nature. The past few years, the practice of Forest Bathing has become more popular in the West (though it was developed in Japan over 40 years ago!). Simply put, it's being in nature, not doing much of anything, letting our bodies absorb the healing properties of nature. Forest Bathing can be as simple as walking in any natural environment and consciously connecting with what’s around you. For a more structured experience, you can join trained guides for a meditative two- to three-hour ecotherapy excursion. I won't go into the science here, but if you want to learn more, you can check out this link from the Forest Bathing Institute.
In Forest Bathing, you are offered what are called "invitations," which are basically different ways to connect with nature (& yourself). Here are seven invitations for you to consider when trying forest bathing for yourself. You can pick just one or several of these, whatever you feel drawn to. Spend as much time with each as feels right for you.
It's with this realization that I want to leave you with today, and it is this that draws me to celebrate Earth Day every day. Knowing and wondering about these connections is what drives me to support and protect the Earth whenever I can, and I hope it inspires you to do the same.
Happy Earth Day!
Teacher, mother, lover of lounging in nature. This blog documents my experience with Niksening in nature and applying this type of minimalism to all aspects of my life, in order to simplify and amplify the best parts of life.
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