Let's face it - usually when nature is mentioned, it sounds positively boring. 'Go for a peaceful walk outside for 20 minutes!' or 'Sit in nature, and just reflect'.
And I've gotta tell you, I'm a wee bit over nature being mentioned in passing, like it's simply an addition to an already full repertoire of self-help activities. As if a 20 minute stroll on pavement as you walk by a few trees in a park is all you need in order to connect deeply to the earth.
Contrary to society's messaging - Nature is not boring. Nature is not just 'going outside for a few minutes'. And nature cannot be treated as an afterthought if it is to provide epic transformation in your life.
Nature is where we start and where we end. Nature is everything! Our bodies are made from the food we eat, and the food we eat is nourished by the soil, the minerals, the atmosphere, and the water of the earth. The air we breathe comes from the leaves of plants. When we die, our bodies decompose, and we return in full to the continuous cycle of Gaia.
It is a part of my mission to open the dialogue surrounding nature. It is my sincere wish that every single being experiences, at least once in their lives, the incredible wisdom + love that is accessible through connecting to the earth.
That won't happen, however, if we keep treating her like an afterthought. But I must say, I do understand where this comes from:
It is because, for the most part, we no longer have meaningful interaction with the earth.
- Rather than walking outside and planting our bare feet on the earth, we put on shoes, and step onto pavement.
- Rather than tending the soil with our bare hands, and growing our own food, from the seeds we've saved - we head to the grocery store and walk down fluorescent lit aisles for processed food in plastic packaging.
- Rather than chopping wood for fires to warm our homes, we simply turn up the thermostat.
- And rather than burying our loved ones in the rich warmth of the earth's embrace, we purchase expensive boxes so that their flesh is kept away from the soil.
We have come a long way from the ways of our ancestors, and granted, most of us won't fully recapture the daily closeness we knew hundreds of years ago. However, that doesn't mean that our connection is no longer, or that it is hopeless to try to connect with nature.
We simply need to find ways to interact meaningfully with the earth again.
What do I mean by interact? I mean a true exchange. Rather than simply gaze upon nature, like a foreign visitor, we need to develop a dialogue with the earth.
We give it energy. It gives us energy.
It is in this way that relationships are formed. For example, if you're trying to develop a friendship, you need to have conversation, right? Same for the earth. You can't just look at her. You need to talk to her. And she will talk right back to you. In fact, she's been calling you this whole time - can you hear?
And so - I would like to offer you a few ways to meaningfully interact with nature, that will bring you back to a place of true connection.
I promise this connection with grow everyday that you nourish it, and in time, you'll be able to have conversations with trees, feel butterflies when you feel a breeze, and generally feel a much more profound connection than you ever thought possible! Yay for that!
1. Create a Ritual
Ritual is a way that we can see and feel a physical exchange with the earth, without having to chop wood or carry water.
A ritual is when intention meets action - so it can literally be anything.
Here are examples of rituals I've recently created:
- I carried 3 rose petals into the forest. For each one, I had a different prayer. For the first, I prayed over a specific relationship, and placed it at the base of a cedar tree. For the second, I prayed for a home built with wood or cob, and threw it into the ocean. For the third, I prayed for a sacred partnership to enter my life, and again, let it go into the sea.
- I've asked the cedar tree if I could snip some of it's branches. After I felt that is was OK, I broke some off, and carried them home to create beautiful green arrangements for around my house.
- I've gathered bits of driftwood, shells, and seaweed to create a mandala on the beach, and left it as a gift for the spirits of the earth.
- I've returned my menstrual blood to the earth, and watered my garden with it. (Granted, this might me a stretch for those of you new to earth connection, but blood from our moon times is one of the best fertilizers on the planet!)
- I've left a lock of my hair on a bush as a thank you for providing such a place for me to relax.
You'll notice in most of these rituals, I actually leave something physical with the earth, and let her have it. I find this to be an important part of creating that exchange I was talking about earlier. Feel free to create a ritual of your own, or model one after one I've listed above!
2. Get your Bare Feet on the Earth for at least 10 minutes
This is also known as 'earthing', and is growing an ever increasing body of scientific research for it's benefits. Getting your bare feet on the bare earth offers you that skin-to-skin effect with a loved one - but with the earth! Honestly, you just have to try it to see what I mean. Spend at least 10 minutes, if not 30, with your bare feet on soil, a log, a rock, or sand, and you'll notice a markable difference in your energy. My feet actually feel like they just had a massage when I do this. In most of my Moon Day Oracle videos, my feet are actually bare and resting on the earth.
3. Thank your food before you eat it
This is something you can do every day, no matter where you are! To thank our food, and thank Mother Earth for growing it, before we eat it, simply reminds us where it came from. It brings us back to the cycles of the earth, while also infusing it with extra love and the energy of gratitude. Yum!
4. Send love to a tree
This tip is the best ever, if I do say so myself. Many people think you can't talk to trees. In fact, a (former, god bless her) friend of mine, said it was the "f*cking stupidest thing she's ever heard".
Well, she's missing out, let me tell you! :D I've literally received the best advice from trees. But I've found that a key piece in communicating with them, is what I call - 'the bridge'. The bridge is love. You've got your human consciousness, doing it's thang. The tree's got it's tree consciousness, being all zen + powerful. In order to connect these 2 consciousnesses, I use the bridge of love. I simply place my hand on the tree, and send it love, usually in the form of green light. I talk to it, and say 'Hey, I love you! You're awesome.' Sometimes I get not much of anything, but other times, a whole rush of energy comes back to me, and I feel tingles all over.
From there, you can say 'what up!' to the tree and tell it all of your problems and joys and hopes and dreams and fears. Notice what thoughts and feelings come to you after you do this. The ones that feel amazing are likely coming from the tree.
5. Ask your Spirit Animals to come visit you in the dreamtime
This tip is also the best ever, if I do say so myself. Spirit animals, are like the spirit guides of the earth world. They are the essence of a race of animals that come to you when you need help, guidance, and assistance.
Most of us work with quite a few different spirit animals, whether we know it or not, though their assistance is powerfully increased when you ask them for help.
Tonight, before you go to bed, simply say 'Spirit Animals, I invoke your presence now. Please come to visit me in the dreamtime tonight, in a way I can truly cherish and remember.'
If you don't get anything right away, keep asking. They'll always come, but not always how you expect it.
Since practising this request regularly, while sleeping I've been swimming with humpbacks, talked to rabbits, admired butterflies, been surrounded by orcas + rainbows, visited by horses, and much more.
I love this practice! It's one of the easiest and most rewarding on this list!
So loved ones - have fun with it - and rekindle your connection to the Sacred Earth Mother. It is the best thing since sliced bread. Actually it is way better.
You're awesome. Now get out there and send love to the first tree you see!