A way into Nature connection
It is a natural way for humans to live directly with nature. Being an innate part of it's waves, currents and evolution. As indigenous peoples we would use our listening to seek direction, hearing the flow of the earth and learning to work alongside her to grow and flourish as part of the breathing world.
As civilisation develops we rise higher and become detached from our roots and the beat of the earth, we need to return to the moist abundant soil and remember our own connection to the wilderness, to be nourished and enriched.
Each culture has it's way of conversing with the land. In Japan there is a practise that has evolved called 'Shinrin Yoku' meaning 'Shinrin' : forest/nature and 'Yoku' to bathe/be immersed. Through being lead on a specifically created walk you will be guided into this listening to nature. Gentle invitations offer the senses a chance to unfold, open and allow in the sounds, smells, sights and textures that may otherwise be lost in the busyness of our modern lives.
Much scientific research shows how valuable having this kind of time in nature can greatly enhance our wellbeing, physically, mentally and emotionally. Allowing for a slow pace and time to breathe in the stillness and gentle presence of nature can bring health benefits such as calmness and relaxation.
Having a Forest Bathing experience
Sessions can last from one and a half hours to 3. I work with landowners who offer me their land in return for a donation, publicity and because they believe in a natural way of communing with the environment.
The spaces I choose are a mixture of farm land with meadows and rivers, as well as forests and orchid fields. I will offer a walk depending on what I feel is alive in the space and what I think could be interesting for others.
You can expect a warm welcome from me! It's best to have all the gear you need to be cosy and warm. There will be moments of sitting and sharing as well as solo time following invitations. During a 'Virtual Forest Listening' (please see the Events page listing for info on current walks) you will be in your nature space, which maybe be outside, in your garden or inside looking out. We will connect through Zoom so participants can see and speak adding to that feeling of supportive circle and forest community. It is so valuable in this time. You will drop into your own awareness of where you are and enjoy your surroundings in the held circle. Being in nature for yourself.
As a lover of the land I always wanted to bring others to experience nature from a quiet, creative and soulful place in a way I experienced it. Being carefree, listening as I wandered, loosing time in the details and patterns of the land and it's beings, plants, grasses, skies and weather. This turned into a movement practise where a group of us created a collaboration of 'Dancers in Landscape' moving from an awakened sense of body in space, feeling into our contours and soaking in the wild aliveness around us. I suppose it's about seeing the natural world as a mirror for our own souls. A view into self and being that offers a purity, a natural essence, an open heart.
It's through this training with the ANFT that I have consolidated all that I know of moving and being in nature and I am delighted to be able to offer these sessions as sharings of the more-than-human-world from the inspired practise of Forest Bathing.
I do hope you'll join me, or fellow guides to experience for yourself the magical healing of being present in nature.