I just returned from camping in the Redwoods. There is a deep stillness in those ancient settings of trees, some that have lived for 1500 years or more.
Several gifts to share from this time away. One is about taking in stillness where it's needed. Another is to recognize the role that nature has played and does play in so many healing journeys. And the other is respecting that for some of us being in a setting like this doesn't feel safe.
The truth is that we each have unique needs and what works for you might not work for me and vice versa. So please practice kindness to yourself as you read this.
How Nature Can Help us Heal
I've learned that some of us turn to nature for soothing when feeling connected with other humans it's too painful. If we've felt hurt in relationship with another, we can begin to meet the need for connection in nature. Perhaps you too can relate to taking refuge by leaning into a tree. Dropping into a wave while surfing. Feeling the wonder of a rainbow painted in the sky. The calming of a gentle breeze on your skin.
It seems that those timeless moments speak to a place inside our nervous system that recognizes stillness and connection. Stillness is a biological part of our human experience.
The experience of stillness is one signal of our nervous system. Recognizing the variety of our nervous system's signals can begin a journey of curiosity about how our own system evolved. Learning about our nervous system is like leaning against an ancient Redwood tree. Our nervous system story is ancient.
Take Away Practice: Taking in Stillness Where we Need it
Sitting for a timeless moment among the Redwoods, I felt anunconditional regard. A quiet embrace that held every part of mewithout judgement or condition. This compassionate encounter tended to younger places inside that have felt a lack of this kind of care.
Each moment like this is an opportunity to strengthen one of the resources we need for healing and to live fully. To extend kindness to ourselves, where we need it most.
Consider where might you find refuge in nature. Make a sacred time, unhurried, and give meaning - invite soothing where you would benefit inside. Invest your attention, your awareness wholeheartedly. You might devote yourself again to coming home to yourself.
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