Not long ago it might have been a rare and unusual experience to witness someone with his arms encircling a majestic tree, seemingly lost in profound contemplation of our spiritual connection to nature. Today, however, there is a growing awareness of this healing modality. Many individuals are seeking the wonders of what is now described as forest bathing. Japan has sixty-two sites designated for just this reason celebrating the magic of Shinrin-Yoku.
Scientists tell us that trees emit phytoncides to protect themselves from insects and plants such as lichen and moss. These molecules are absorbed by humans through respiration and are considered beneficial in dealing with stress management, regulating blood pressure and boosting the immune system.
I was excited recently to discover this information in a YouTube video. I have been hugging trees for many years without knowing the scientific validation. I just do it because it feels good. It connects me with the earth. It makes me feel grounded, conjoined with the trees, our roots together extending deep into Gaia.
Shinrin-Yoku. Perhaps this is a subtle invitation from the Divine Universe to our over stimulated psyches awash with so many concerns and tribulations.
I have come to believe there is so much more to discover about the gifts available to us from Mother Earth. We already know of stories from our ancestors of the healing properties of many plants.
Perhaps EVERY insect, flower, stone, blade of grass...every manifestation of nature...holds a secret we have yet to ascertain. Perhaps ALL necessary healing modalities are already accessible to us residing in Gaia in stark contrast to the medications we take to ease our pain.
Perhaps that pain exists to alert us to whatever is blocking the corridor to our expansion...emotions not accessed, experienced or released. And perhaps our environment....EVERYTHING in nature we see or feel or touch...is here to minister to our pain and soothe us on that journey.
Could Shinrin-Yoku be the key, the sacred entrance to the mystic messages awaiting our discovery?
image from pinterest.com