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How Nature Can Help us to Get Back on Track

Man’s heart away from nature becomes hard.
~Standing Bear 1829-1908~


When I was a young boy of about 8-10 years old, and I had questions about spirituality and the meaning of life – I was told by my Grandad that nature would answer those questions.

I have found it has been true on my journey. Whenever I felt alone as a kid or I was upset about something I’d go for a walk and sit down by the Waiwhero stream down the road. Sooner or later a duck would turn up and quack. A small tornado would come out of nowhere and seconds later disappear. Leaves would blow across the grass towards me. A trail of ants would grab my attention as they trod over sticks heading towards their destination. I’d look up and see a bird gliding effortlessly through the sky. Something within nature would occur and it would center me and bring me back to peace.

Soon enough I’d forgotten my troubles.

In my late teens I decided to complete a 10 week Spiritual Healing course effort to awaken the senses and instincts and satisfy my quest for spiritual knowledge. Once again I was told by my teacher that it was through nature I would gain insights; that nature would speak to me. Well I can say this – nature speaks to everybody.

If you’ll listen.

Slow down and take time out in nature when you need a bit of head space. When I’m stressing out I often look to the sky and notice the clouds rolling by in the wind and birds flying about. Relax.

Maybe you have a big decision to make and you might be unclear, undecided, unsure – once again, nature can come to the rescue. After being in nature, most people say that “it cleared my head”, “I centered myself”, “it’s all clear to me now, I know what I’m doing”. After a good surf you feel totally relaxed and at ease. A refreshing swim in the stream can bring you back into the moment (especially if it’s 10-12 degrees Celsius) a simple walk in nature does it for others. Some people are mountain people. Some are bush or forest people. Others are ocean people (like me). Whatever works.

Always remember that we are part of nature, we are connected. So next time you need inspiration, peace of mind, clarity of mind – go be with nature.

Animal interaction can also be great for getting back on track. Some people use horses to teach people how to learn to trust themselves. While interacting with horses, individuals are able to identify and shift their limiting behavior patterns. Patterns that stop them from developing trusting relationships in various life settings. Horses respond to what they see and feel in the moment, they sense and respond to a person’s intentions, thoughts and emotions that are conveyed subconsciously through body language. Through the experience of observing a horse’s response to their directions and requests, one learns how to communicate more effectively, face their fears, manage their emotions, and become more consistent and congruent with their actions. And all this is done is real-time.

Nature provides the ultimate short cut for those who are serious about finding solutions to the challenges they face in this sometimes complex and fast paced, technological society in which we now live. Remember from whence we came!

Te toto o te tangata, he kai; te oranga o te tangata, he whenua (while food provides the blood in our veins, our health is drawn from the land).
Old Maori Proverb

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