Eco-Therapy: The Healing Power of Nature

By December 14, 2012Uncategorized

Scientists are warning of a second environmental disaster on the horizon (the first being global warming). A general sense of apathy and ignorance combined with our love affair with technology has created a huge disconnect with the natural world with a great many people, much to our detriment. This disconnect includes several aspects including not knowing where your food comes from to low levels of vitamin D (from exposure to sunshine). In Richard Louve’s best selling book, Last Child in the Woods, where he coins the term, Nature Deficit Disorder, one child is quoted as saying, “Why would I want to go outside? There are no electrical outlets out there.” Not long ago (before video games and smart phones) kids were told by their parents to go outside and play. Today, a whole generation, perhaps two, has no idea what this means. Simply stated: we have taken nature for granted, and this is the first step in losing this precious relationship. Moreover, it compromises our health of mind, body and spirit. Scientists are now discovering the importance of our bond with nature, from brain chemistry to the entrainment of earthly rhythms. While sages and wisdom keepers have always touted the benefits of the healing power of nature, a new term has entered the American Lexicon: Eco-therapy. As with all wisdom, it is important to go beyond the theory to the application (all puns intended).
Stress Tip for The Day:
Make a habit to get outside every day. Go for a morning or a noon day walk, regardless of the weather. Get to know nature through all the elements. Familiarize yourself with the phases of the moon, even the ocean tides if you live near the shore. Reacquaint yourself with your local wildlife. Study the rhythms and energies of the planet. Walk softly on the back of the planet. Mother Nature eagerly awaits your return home.
Links and Books of Note:
The December issue of Outside magazine has an excellent article about the healing power of nature. I highly recommend reading it. And If you haven’t read, Richard Louve’s book, Last Child in the Wilderness, I highly recommend this too. There is also this great documentary called Earth Songs… currently playing on PBS affiliates around the country.
Quotes of the Day:
We are part of the natural world, and it is part of us.” — Anonymous
Photograph of the Day
Today’s photo was taken on the north shore of Kauai during a beautiful sunset (no Photoshop was necessary to make it look this good).
Brian Luke Seaward, Ph.D. is an internationally renowned expert in the fields of stress management, mind-body-spirit healing and stress and human spirituality. He is the author of over 12 books including the bestsellers, Stand Like Mountain, Flow Like Water, Stressed Is Desserts Spelled Backward, The Art of Calm, Quiet Mind, Fearless Heart and Managing Stress (7e) and the newly released, A Beautiful World: The Earth Song Journals. He can be reached through his website:
© Brian Luke Seaward, Ph.D.
Brian Luke Seaward

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